The Technology Behind Exoskeletons

Thu, 08/15/2013 - 8:01am

With a robust history of pop culture examples, its no wonder that real-life exoskeleton prototypes have been evolving for decades. General Electric's 'Hardi-Man' project funded by the U.S. military, began in the 1960s. According to the manual, the exoskeleton could help users lift 1500 pounds, but it also weighed 1500 pounds. Lockheed Martin's current day 'hulc' helps soldiers tote up to 200 pounds without significantly weighing them down. Using gyroscopes, microprocessors, sensors, and battery technology, today's exoskeleton suits are much more intuitive than their predecessors.

"The control of the device actually mimics what you and I do when we walk normally," said Craig Maxwell, vice president and cheif technology officer for Parker Hannifin, the company behind the technology of 'Indego.' "The next frontier for us will be how we control it, so the human machine interface. You know-do we tap right into the neural network of the brain to control the device." Read more at

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