Development of Self-Powered 5-Finger Pneumatically Driven Hand Prosthesis Using Supination of Forearm
Kotaro Nishikawa*, Kentaro Hirata**, and Masahiro Takaiwa***
*Department of Integrated Science and Technology, National Institute of Technology, Tsuyama College
624-1 Numa, Tsuyama, Okayama 708-8509, Japan
**Graduate School of Natural Science and Technology, Okayama University
3-1-1 Tsushima-naka, Kita-ku, Okayama 700-8530, Japan
***Graduate School of Technology, Industrial and Social Sciences, Tokushima University
2-1 Minamijyousanjima-cho, Tokushima 770-8506, Japan
Recently, myoelectric hand prostheses produced by the combination of 3D-CAD and printer have gained attention. 3D printing of hand prosthesis has resulted in cost reduction. However, when an electric actuator with reduction gears is used as the driving source of the hand prosthesis, the joint rigidity becomes high; therefore, compliance control is required to grasp soft target objects. In this study, we propose a pneumatically driven hand prosthesis using a flexible bellows actuator. The hand prosthesis is lightweight and inexpensive because it is self-powered and generates compressed air through the supination motion of the user’s forearm instead of an external compressor, which is essential for conventional pneumatic systems. Stable flexible grasping of the target object was achieved by driving a five-finger hand using this system.
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