In a current prototype, a series of webbing straps around the lower half of the body contain a low-power microprocessor and a network of supple strain sensors. These act as the “brain” and “nervous system” of the Soft Exosuit, respectively, continuously monitoring various data signals, including suit tension, wearer position (walking, running, crouched), and more.“Over just a couple of short years, Conor and his team will work to fundamentally shift the paradigm of what is possible in wearable robotics,” said Wyss Institute director Don Ingber. “Their work is a great example of the power of bringing together people from multiple disciplines with focused resources to translate what first seems like a dream into a product that could transform people’s lives.”In addition to its military application, the team will collaborate with clinical partners to develop a medical version of the suit that could greatly benefit stroke victims, for example, whose gait often becomes slow and inefficient.Collaborators include Wyss Institute and SEAS faculty member Robert Wood and visiting professor Ken Holt, and Terry Ellis at Boston University’s College of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. Critical to this project’s success to date has been a team of Harvard postdoctoral fellows (Alan Asbeck, Stefano de Rossi, Ignacio Galiana, Yigit Menguc) and graduate students (Ye Ding, Jaehyun Bae, Kai Schmidt, Brendan Quinlivan), and staff from the Wyss Institute (Zivthan Dubrovsky, Robert Dyer, Mike Mogenson, Diana Wagner, Kathleen O’Donnell). Boston-based New Balance also will be a key collaborator on this new phase of the project, bringing expertise in textile and apparel innovation.Under the terms of the contract with DARPA, the Wyss Institute will receive up to $2.9 million for its work on Warrior Web, with full funding contingent on meeting a series of technical milestones. <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azSpdF8CGPw” rel=”nofollow” target=”_blank”> <img src=”https://img.youtube.com/vi/azSpdF8CGPw/0.jpg” alt=”0″ title=”How To Choose The Correct Channel Type For Your Video Content ” /> </a> A biologically inspired smart suit that fits under clothing and could help soldiers walk farther, tire less easily, and carry heavy loads more safely has been given a boost that could be as much as $2.9 million.The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University announced today that it has been awarded a first-phase, follow-on contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to further develop its Soft Exosuit — a wearable robot — alternative versions of which could eventually help those with limited mobility as well.Technologies developed by DARPA’s Warrior Web program aim to prevent and reduce musculoskeletal injuries for military personnel, but can have civilian applications, too. The suit could reduce long-term health care costs and enhance the quality of life for people on and off the battlefield.The award is the first of what could be a two-phase contract, and it enables Wyss Institute core faculty member Conor Walsh and his team to build upon their earlier work (also funded by DARPA) demonstrating the proof-of-concept of this radically new approach to wearable robot design and fabrication. Inspired by a deep understanding of the biomechanics of human walking, Soft Exosuit technology is spawning development of entirely new forms of functional textiles, flexible power systems, soft sensors, and control strategies that enable intuitive and seamless human-machine interaction.The lightweight Soft Exosuit overcomes the drawbacks of traditional, heavier exoskeleton systems, such as power-hungry battery packs and rigid components that can interfere with natural joint movement.“While the idea of a wearable robot is not new, our design approach certainly is,” said Walsh, an assistant professor of mechanical and biomedical engineering at Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and founder of the Harvard Biodesign Lab.The lightweight Soft Exosuit overcomes the drawbacks of traditional, heavier exoskeleton systems, such as power-hungry battery packs and rigid components that can interfere with natural joint movement. It is made of soft, functional textiles woven into a piece of smart clothing that is pulled on like a pair of pants, and is intended to be worn under a soldier’s regular gear. The suit mimics the action of leg muscles and tendons when a person walks, and provides small but carefully timed assistance at the leg joints without restricting the wearer’s movement.
The Everton winger struck twice, the second of them in the 90th minute, to clinch a 2-1 win at the Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena in Tbilisi and earn the plaudits of both manager Martin O’Neill and skipper Robbie Keane. O’Neill said: “He was the only player on the field that was scoring the goal. He really is a fantastic talent. Press Association “He probably thinks at this age he should have been up there with the very finest players. He has that talent and he showed that tonight.” Long-time team-mate Keane was equally effusive after seeing McGeady, who had opened the scoring with 24 minutes gone, snatch the points at the death after turning on the edge of the penalty area and curling a delicious shot past substitute keeper Roin Kvashvadze. Keane said: “If you score a goal like that, you deserve to win the game. If anyone else did that, the top players in the world, you would be talking about it for a long time. “The turn, the touch, the finish – only he could do that. No-one else on that field would have been able to do that.” McGeady, who played under O’Neill during his time as Celtic manager, had scored only three goals in his previous 69 appearances for his country. His double in Tbilisi in his manager’s first competitive game – he also scored in the 62-year-old’s first friendly against Latvia in November last year – increased his relatively meagre tally significantly, and the second of them proved priceless. McGeady was applauded back into the away dressing room after conducting a series of interviews following the final whistle, and admitted he did not know what to do with himself. He said: “I’d been doing a few interviews outside while the manager was talking to the team about the game. I was a bit awkward when it happened, I didn’t know how to react really. It was nice.” Asked about his decisive strike, he added: “The second goal was all about concentrating on my touch. I had my back to the goal, I just thought I’d try something. It came off for me. “It doesn’t happen very often for me, but thankfully it went in.” McGeady’s 24th-minute strike gave Ireland an early advantage which was cancelled out in spectacular style by Tornike Okriashvili seven minutes before half-time. The game looked to be heading for a draw until the Ireland midfielder span and delivered the denouement to send the small band of travelling supporters into raptures. O’Neill said: “We scored a goal, and we were at our most comfortable when they equalised. It changed the complexion and momentum of the game. There was moments in the second half when it might have been worrying for us, but we’ve seen it through. “I think there’s improvement in the team – we’ve won away from home, which is terrific – but there’s definitely improvement in the team.” For Georgia boss Temuri Ketsbaia, a sixth successive defeat by Ireland proved hard to accept. He said: “Ireland’s second goal was the only moment of quality in the second half. Perhaps a draw would have been a fair result and left both teams happy. “Our performance is not what we want to see and we definitely want to see better games and results. We have limitations in the team and in Georgian football in general – that is the reality we have to face. “We cannot fault the players’ effort and they stuck to task for 99 per cent of the time, but Ireland have 25 players who play at the top level with most in the Premier League.” Aiden McGeady was the hero as the Republic of Ireland launched their Euro 2106 qualifying campaign with a dramatic victory in Georgia.