Bone and Joint Institute

Design and validation of a novel mechatronic transmission system for a wearable tremor suppression device

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Robotics and Autonomous Systems



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Traditional treatments, medication and surgery, for tremor management in Parkinsons disease have shown varying effectiveness carry a risk of significant side effects. Recent research and development of wearable tremor suppression technology have shown a promising third solution for tremor management. This paper presents the design of a novel multi-channel mechatronic splitter (MMS) for use in wearable tremor suppression devices. This mechatronic system allows a single drive motor to support multiple independent outputs. The operation (speed and direction) of the MMS is controlled by a 2 W DC motor. This low power characteristic may provide a promising approach to achieving a prolonged operating life for wearable devices. Furthermore, the size of the MMS can be scaled proportionally according to different applications for optimal performance. This paper describes the design, modeling, implementation and characterization of the MMS. The weight of the MMS prototype is 129 g, the maximum output speed is 120 rpm, and the maximum continuous torque is 0.15 Nm. In addition, recorded tremor motion along with voluntary movement from 7 individuals with Parkinsons disease was used to validate the performance of the MMS. The MMS was controlled to suppress tremor motion while following the voluntary movement of the subject. An average of 12.4% RMS error in voluntary motion tracking was achieved on a dynamic tremor suppression test. A mono-input-multiple-output mechatronic mechanism for tremor suppression is presented.The power transferred from the power source to the output is controlled by a 2 W DC motor.A single drive motor can be used to support multiple independent outputs.The mechanism was validated using tremor data from patients with Parkinsons disease.An average of 12.4% RMS error was achieved on a dynamic tremor suppression test.

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