JRM Vol.32 No.1 pp. 157-172
doi: 10.20965/jrm.2020.p0157


Development and Evaluation of a Close-Fitting Assistive Suit for Back and Arm Muscle – e.z.UP®

Yun-Ting Liao*, Toshifumi Ishioka**, Kazuko Mishima**, Chiaki Kanda**, Kenji Kodama**, and Eiichiro Tanaka***

*Graduate School of Information, Production and Systems, Waseda University
2-7 Hibikino, Wakamatsu-ku, Kitakyusyu, Fukuoka 808-0135, Japan

**Asahicho Corporation
110 Fukawa-cho, Fuchu-city, Hiroshima 726-0004, Japan

***Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University
2-7 Hibikino, Wakamatsu-ku, Kitakyusyu, Fukuoka 808-0135, Japan

April 7, 2019
November 12, 2019
February 20, 2020
manual handling workers, assistive suit, elastic materials, arm and back assistance

This paper proposes a close-fitting assistive suit, called e.z.UP®, with a passive actuation mechanism composed of an adjustable structure. The suit can adequately assist the back and arm muscles of a user with the proposed layout of an arm assistive belt and a two-layer structure, respectively. With its lightweight characteristic (i.e., weighing 0.75 kg only), the proposed suit is portable and easy to wear without additional burden. By using the averaged Japanese body data, a simulation was conducted based on a human body model wearing our proposed suit to evaluate the layout of the arm assistive belt. The simulation results prove that the proposed suit can adequately assist the user’s arm muscles based on the user’s motion. An experiment involving the measurement of muscle activities is also implemented with seven young subjects and seven middle-aged subjects to evaluate the arm assistive belt and the two-layer structure. The experimental results reveal that the proposed suit can successfully and appropriately assist both the arm and back muscles simultaneously.

Lift-up motion assistive suit

Lift-up motion assistive suit

Cite this article as:
Y. Liao, T. Ishioka, K. Mishima, C. Kanda, K. Kodama, and E. Tanaka, “Development and Evaluation of a Close-Fitting Assistive Suit for Back and Arm Muscle – e.z.UP®–,” J. Robot. Mechatron., Vol.32 No.1, pp. 157-172, 2020.
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