A lightweight gravity-balanced exoskeleton for home rehabilitation of upper limbs

Hsiang Chien Hsieh, Chao-Chieh Lan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Stroke recovery requires intensive and continuous rehabilitation over a long period of time. Access to existing rehabilitation devices is limited to hospitals due to the considerable cost and maintenance. This paper proposes a lightweight, low-cost gravity-balanced exoskeleton for home rehabilitation of upper limbs. Gravity balancing is based on a two-bar mechanism that can fit the periphery of a human arm. A type of planar flexural spring is proposed to achieve the required spring potential energy. This type of spring has a thin cross-section and can be designed and fabricated conveniently. A model is constructed to optimize the geometry and dimension of the exoskeleton. Performance is evaluated through a static analysis. The results show that the proposed exoskeleton is both simpler and lighter than existing passive devices. It can be easily custom-made for different arm masses and sizes. We expect the exoskeleton to be used in both clinical and homecare environments for the arm rehabilitation of stroke patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6899444
Pages (from-to)972-977
Number of pages6
JournalIEEE International Conference on Automation Science and Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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