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Development of VariLeg, an exoskeleton with variable stiffness actuation: first results and user evaluation from the CYBATHLON 2016

Overview of attention for article published in Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, March 2018
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (82nd percentile)

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14 tweeters
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Citations

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14 Dimensions

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125 Mendeley
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Title
Development of VariLeg, an exoskeleton with variable stiffness actuation: first results and user evaluation from the CYBATHLON 2016
Published in
Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, March 2018
DOI 10.1186/s12984-018-0360-4
Pubmed ID
Authors

Stefan O. Schrade, Katrin Dätwyler, Marius Stücheli, Kathrin Studer, Daniel-Alexander Türk, Mirko Meboldt, Roger Gassert, Olivier Lambercy

Abstract

Powered exoskeletons are a promising approach to restore the ability to walk after spinal cord injury (SCI). However, current exoskeletons remain limited in their walking speed and ability to support tasks of daily living, such as stair climbing or overcoming ramps. Moreover, training progress for such advanced mobility tasks is rarely reported in literature. The work presented here aims to demonstrate the basic functionality of the VariLeg exoskeleton and its ability to enable people with motor complete SCI to perform mobility tasks of daily life. VariLeg is a novel powered lower limb exoskeleton that enables adjustments to the compliance in the leg, with the objective of improving the robustness of walking on uneven terrain. This is achieved by an actuation system with variable mechanical stiffness in the knee joint, which was validated through test bench experiments. The feasibility and usability of the exoskeleton was tested with two paraplegic users with motor complete thoracic lesions at Th4 and Th12. The users trained three times a week, in 60 min sessions over four months with the aim of participating in the CYBATHLON 2016 competition, which served as a field test for the usability of the exoskeleton. The progress on basic walking skills and on advanced mobility tasks such as incline walking and stair climbing is reported. Within this first study, the exoskeleton was used with a constant knee stiffness. Test bench evaluation of the variable stiffness actuation system demonstrate that the stiffness could be rendered with an error lower than 30 Nm/rad. During training with the exoskeleton, both users acquired proficient skills in basic balancing, walking and slalom walking. In advanced mobility tasks, such as climbing ramps and stairs, only basic (needing support) to intermediate (able to perform task independently in 25% of the attempts) skill levels were achieved. After 4 months of training, one user competed at the CYBATHLON 2016 and was able to perform 3 (stand-sit-stand, slalom and tilted path) out of 6 obstacles of the track. No adverse events occurred during the training or the competition. Demonstration of the applicability to restore ambulation for people with motor complete SCI was achieved. The CYBATHLON highlighted the importance of training and gaining experience in piloting an exoskeleton, which were just as important as the technical realization of the robot.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 14 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 125 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 125 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 29 23%
Student > Master 22 18%
Student > Bachelor 11 9%
Student > Doctoral Student 8 6%
Researcher 8 6%
Other 13 10%
Unknown 34 27%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Engineering 48 38%
Nursing and Health Professions 6 5%
Psychology 5 4%
Neuroscience 4 3%
Computer Science 4 3%
Other 19 15%
Unknown 39 31%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 11. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 25 May 2018.
All research outputs
#1,664,539
of 15,046,038 outputs
Outputs from Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation
#95
of 898 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#49,799
of 278,096 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation
#1
of 1 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 15,046,038 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 88th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 898 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a little more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 7.1. This one has done well, scoring higher than 89% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 278,096 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 82% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has scored higher than all of them