A new design method for generating surrogate kinematic truss orthoses to support pathological gait patterns in human model simulations

DS 122: Proceedings of the Design Society: 24th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED23)

Year: 2023
Editor: Kevin Otto, Boris Eisenbart, Claudia Eckert, Benoit Eynard, Dieter Krause, Josef Oehmen, Nadège Troussier
Author: Steck, Patrick; Scherb, David; Mayer, Johannes; Jäger, Michael; Miehling, Jörg; Völkl, Harald; Wartzack, Sandro
Series: ICED
Institution: Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
Section: Design Methods
Page(s): 0323-0332
DOI number: https://doi.org/10.1017/pds.2023.33


With increasing life expectancy, the risk of diseases of the central nervous system, such as cancer, strokes, etc., also increases. Strokes often result in injury to the sciatic nerve, which is responsible for controlling the calf muscles (plantar and dorsal flexors). A so-called ankle joint orthosis (AFO) helps to support the pathological gait and to avoid foot drop during gait. Passive orthoses are of particular importance for research, as they do not require additional incoming energy from outside to the orthotic system. However, current passive orthoses are often not personalized. On the one hand, because they usually have only a temporary muscle-building function and, on the other hand, because the individual design process is computationally time consuming and thus expensive. This paper presents a possibility to pre-dimension and pre-design passive orthoses fast and cost-efficiently by reducing the complexity of the model based on volume-optimized truss elements. Therefor a traditional high calculation intensive design procedure is compared with the complexity reduced model to show its effectiviness and the similarity of the results.

Keywords: Orthoses, User centred design, Lightweight design, Truss optimization, Design methods

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