Aalborg, Denmark
Aalborg, Denmark

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Andersen M.S.,University of Aalborg | Benoit D.L.,University of Ottawa | Damsgaard M.,AnyBody Technology A S | Ramsey D.K.,State University of New York at Buffalo | Rasmussen J.,University of Aalborg
Journal of Biomechanics | Year: 2010

We investigated the effects of including kinematic constraints in the analysis of knee kinematics from skin markers and compared the result to simultaneously recorded trajectories of bone pin markers during gait of six healthy subjects. The constraint equations that were considered for the knee were spherical and revolute joints, which have been frequently used in musculoskeletal modelling. In the models, the joint centres and joint axes of rotations were optimised from the skin marker trajectories over the trial. It was found that the introduction of kinematic constraints did not reduce the error associated with soft tissue artefacts. The inclusion of a revolute joint constraint showed a statistically significant increase in the mean flexion/extension joint angle error and no statistically significant change for the two other mean joint angle errors. The inclusion of a spherical joint showed a statistically significant increase in the mean flexion/extension and abduction/adduction errors. In addition, when a spherical joint was included, a statistically significant increase in the sum of squared differences between measured marker trajectories and the trajectories of the pin markers in the models was seen. From this, it was concluded that both more advanced knee models as well as models of soft tissue artefacts should be developed before accurate knee kinematics can be calculated from skin markers. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Benoit D.L.,University of Ottawa | Damsgaard M.,AnyBody Technology A S | Andersen M.S.,University of Aalborg
Journal of Biomechanics | Year: 2015

When recording human movement with stereophotogrammetry, skin deformation and displacement (soft tissue artefact; STA) inhibits surface markers' ability to validly represent the movement of the underlying bone. To resolve this issue, the components of marker motions which contribute to STA must be understood. The purpose of this study is to describe and quantify which components of this marker motion (cluster translation, rotation, scaling and deformation) contribute to STA during the stance phase of walking, a cutting manoeuvre, and one-legged hops. In vivo bone pin-based tibio-femoral kinematics of six healthy subjects were used to study skin marker-based STA. To quantify how total cluster translation, rotation, scaling and deformation contribute to STA, a resizable and deformable cluster model was constructed. STA was found to be greater in the thigh than the shank during all three movements. We found that the non-rigid (i.e. scaling and deformation) movements contribute very little to the overall amount of error, rendering surface marker optimisation methods aimed at minimising this component superfluous. The results of the current study indicate that procedures designed to account for cluster translation and rotation during human movement are required to correctly represent the motion of body segments, however reducing marker cluster scaling and deformation will have little effect on STA. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Andersen M.S.,University of Aalborg | Damsgaard M.,AnyBody Technology A S | Rasmussen J.,University of Aalborg | Ramsey D.K.,State University of New York at Buffalo | Benoit D.L.,University of Ottawa
Gait and Posture | Year: 2012

We investigated the accuracy of a linear soft tissue artefact (STA) model in human movement analysis. Simultaneously recorded bone-mounted pin and skin marker data for the thigh and shank during walking, cutting and hopping were used to measure and model the motion of the skin marker clusters within anatomical reference frames (ARFs). This linear model allows skin marker movements relative to the underlying bone contrary to a rigid-body assumption. The linear model parameters were computed through a principal component analysis, which revealed that 95% of the variance of the STA motion for the thigh was contained in the first four principal components for all three tasks and all subjects. For the shank, 95% of the variance was contained in the first four principal components during walking and cutting and first five during hopping. For the thigh, the maximum residual artefact was reduced from 27.0. mm to 5.1. mm (walking), 22.7. mm to 3.0. mm (cutting) and 16.2. mm to 3.5. mm (hopping) compared to a rigid-body assumption. Similar reductions were observed for the shank: 24.2. mm to 1.9. mm (walking), 20.3. mm to 1.9. mm (cutting) and 14.7. mm to 1.8. mm (hopping). A geometric analysis of the first four principal components revealed that, within the ARFs, marker cluster STA is governed by rigid-body translations and rotations rather than deformations. The challenge remains, however, in finding the linear model parameters without bone pin data, but this investigation shows that relatively few parameters in a linear model are required to model the vast majority of the STA movements. © 2011 Elsevier B.V..

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: NMP-2008-4.0-7 | Award Amount: 5.30M | Year: 2009

Disabling foot and ankle pain is common; it impacts negatively on health related quality of life, and it is has major cost implications on health systems across Europe. Foot and ankle orthoses are an effective treatment for these conditions. However, the market is dominated by low cost mass produced products, craftsmanship built customised devices with delivery times >15 days, and a limited range of computer-aided design and manufactured products. The objective of the A-FOOTPRINT project is to develop novel foot and ankle orthoses which are personalised for shape and biomechanical function and can be ready for patient use within 48 hours. The goal is to achieve improved fit and comfort, functionality, aesthetic appeal and ease of use with better clinical and cost effectiveness over state-of-the-art products. Innovative CAD tools will be developed and combined with rapid manufacturing to create complete geometric design freedom. This will be coupled with step change advances in personalisation by developing individual patient data from gait analysis and medical images to inform the design process, aided by biomechanical simulation to optimise functionality such as joint stabilisation and pressure distribution. Rapid manufacturing techniques will be used to develop novel customised orthotic components such as living hinges, variable stiffness and fine resolution cushioning to enable better personalised function. Setting new industry standards, prototype devices will be evaluated by near pharmaceutical industry level controlled trials to further improve product knowledge. This highly integrated, multidisciplinary project will make a significant impact on the health-related quality of life and well-being of EU citizens. The Consortium comprises leading orthotic and enabling technology SMEs, clinical and academic research centres and large enterprise. The project will enable the SMEs to become international leaders with strong competitive advantages.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2009.5.2 | Award Amount: 4.32M | Year: 2010

The burden of Musculo-Skeletal (M-S) diseases and prosthetic revision operations is huge and increasing rapidly with the aging population. For patients that require a major surgical intervention, procedures are unsafe, uncertain in outcome and have a high complication rate. The goal of TLEMsafe is to create an ICT-based patient-specific surgical navigation system that helps the surgeon safely reaching the optimal functional result for the patient and is a user friendly training facility for the surgeons. TLEMsafe is developed by generating automated 3-D image-analyzing tools to parameterize the M-S system. The patient-specific parameters are fed into a recently developed M-S model with which the patient-specific functional outcome can be predicted. This consists of a direct effect (e.g. due to the removal of a muscle in a tumor patient), but has also a secondary effect in the sense that the patient will generate adaptive behavior to the altered M-S system. Implementation of the adaptive capacity will be a unique (but essential) feature which allows valid predictions of the functional effects of surgical interventions. The next step is that the surgeon can virtually operate on the patient-specific model after which the model predicts the functional effects. Once the optimal plan is selected, this is fed into a system that allows the surgeon to reproduce the selected surgical plan during the actual surgery TLEMsafe is a navigation system based on innovative ICT tools for training and pre-operative planning. Extensive, innovative validation techniques including quantitative indicators to improve safety (of surgical operation) and quality (highly predictable effects of complex surgery) are included. The emphasis on the M-S pathologies and the adaptive capabilities of the human M-S system creates a unique system. Co-developing the software of the visual and interactive (surgical) parts with clinicians and companies eases the successful introduction to (future) surgeons.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ICT-25-2016-2017 | Award Amount: 3.95M | Year: 2017

Recent technological progress in robot physical interaction permitted robots to actively and safely share with human a common workspace. Thanks to these technologies, Europe nowadays leads the robotic market in the niche of safety certified robots by endowing them with the ability to react to unintentional contacts. ANDY leverages these technologies and strengthen the European leadership by endowing robots with the ability to control physical collaboration through intentional interaction. These advances necessitate progresses along three main directions: measuring, modeling and helping humans engaged in intentional collaborative physical tasks. First, ANDY will innovate the way of measuring human whole-body motions developing the ANDYSUIT, a wearable force and motion tracking technology. Second, ANDY will develop the ANDYMODEL, a technology to learn cognitive models of human behavior in collaborative tasks. Third, ANDY will propose the ANDYCONTROL, an innovative technology for helping humans through predictive physical collaboration. ANDY will accelerate take-up and deployment by validating its progresses in realistic scenarios. In the first validation scenario the robot is identified with an industrial collaborative robot (i.e. robot=cobot) which adapts its ergonomy to individual workers. In the second validation scenario the robot is identified with an assistive exoskeleton (i.e. robot=exoskeleton) optimizing human comfort and reducing physical stress. In the third validation scenario the robot is identified with a humanoid (i.e. robot=humanoid) offering assistance to a human while maintaining the balance of both.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: FoF.NMP.2013-6 | Award Amount: 8.93M | Year: 2013

In today globalized world, companies are trying to remain competitive through the adoption of a strategy where high quantity production of goods is the leverage to reduce costs. By negating this approach, ADDFactor proposes the Mini-factories concept, which is conceived to be an innovative solution for most of the actors involved in the whole supply chain: the relationship between retailers and the manufacturing technologies will be considered and characterized by a new production framework concept, founded on central knowledge-based design and local distributed manufacturing. This high-level concept will be applied focusing on need-driven products, and ADDFactor will manage the complexity of their design phase thanks to a direct connection with the retailer, that will provide biometric data of the customers as tacit requirements and aesthetics tests as explicit demands, being both fundamental for an effective individual personalization. ADDFactor achievements will be focused on two different levels of manufacturing solutions, which will be placed: at retail environment, to consider products simple and/or reduced in terms of assembled components (i.e. orthotics or modular fashion heels and plateau); and at district level when the products are complex and the manufacturing procedures cannot be scaled at local level (i.e. sport shoes or complete customized fashion shoes). Within this overall project concept, ADDFactor will structure its activities towards the achievement of different objectives, from diagnostic devices to advanced design tools in order to convert personal data in individual product specifications. The manufacturing is then guaranteed by a local manufacturing through novel ultra-fast and auto-configurable machines. Thanks to the concurrent impact of these project results, ADDFactor will spark off an innovation virtuous cycle towards a future European industry.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: NMP.2012.2.2-1 | Award Amount: 18.29M | Year: 2013

Articulating joint replacements represent a medical market exceeding 14 billion p.a. that is expected to rise as demographics reflect an ageing population. However, faster growth has been seen in the revision market, where prosthetic joints are replaced, than in primary interventions. The major cause of these revisions is that all joint replacements are prone to wear leading to loss of implant function. Further, it has been demonstrated that adverse or extreme loading has a detrimental effect on implant performance. Thus, device failure still occurs too frequently leading to the conclusion that their longevity and reliability must be improved. The premise of this proposal is to realise that wear and corrosion are an inevitable consequence of all implant interfaces within contemporary total joint replacements. To overcome this problem our novel approach is to use silicon nitride coatings in which the combined high wear resistance of this material and solubility of any silicon nitride wear particles released, reduce the overall potential for adverse tissue reactions. In this work a variety of silicon nitride based coatings will be applied to different tribological scenarios related to total hip arthroplasty. The coatings suitability in each scenario will be assessed against target profiles. In particular, it is important to consider coating performance within each of these applications under adverse conditions as well as those outlined in internationally utilised standards. To accomplish this, cutting-edge adverse simulation techniques, in vitro assays and animal models will be developed together with a suite of computational assessments to significantly enhance device testing in terms of predicting clinical performance. Data will inform new standards development and enhance current testing scenarios, and will provide 5 European enterprises with a significant market advantage, whilst providing data for a regulatory submission which is aligned with Dir 93/42/EEC.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: FoF-10-2015 | Award Amount: 5.95M | Year: 2015

I - Over forty million workers in the EU are affected by work-place related musculoskeletal disorders, as a result of working in painful or tiring positions and handling heavy loads with repetitive hand or arm movements. II - The aging population is growing fast and approaching the mean age where loss of function and hence loss of mobility is to begin. In addition to diabetic and obesity, in 5 years time, there will be significant increase in number of elderly people who require mobility aids or orthoses which need to be fitted in order to enable population to live at their home independently. III - A number of neuromuscular disorders, along with other pathologies such as arthrogryposis, affect children motor patterns in the limbs causing motion deficits. To achieve long term benefits for the European society, the proposal addresses those three groups with the development of a next generation of Movement Assistive Devices (MADs): innovative, passive and highly customized kineto-dynamic equipment, built to provide natural compensation of human movements (both upper and lower limbs). MADs will be conceived and developed exploiting a generative design approach (capable to combine unique morphological characteristics with personalized kinematics) coupled with an innovative additive multi-material technology ( capable to deliver specific mechanical properties), By delivering products for mobility enhancement of the older persons, the project directly contributes in dealing with familiar ageing society issues by decreasing the need of care sector and enhancing a reduction of falls with an overall consequent saved costs. In workplace safety, the MAD fosters correct kinesis, injury prevention and improved productivity. Meanwhile, placing focus on the last, third group, MovAiD promotes the final stage of a modern sustainable society by augmenting the quality of life of its youngest members with difficulties in mobility.

SPINEFX is an integrated ITN comprising academic, industrial and clinical partners that is designed to create exceptionally trained researchers with the key skills to deliver commercially significant, innovative solutions to the challenges posed by spinal disease and trauma, namely vertebral fracture. The significant economic and personal impact of these fractures can be gleaned from the fact that in osteoporosis 1 in 3 women will suffer one. Added to this is the high cost of vertebral fractures due to trauma, which can exceed 1 million per patient. It is only with a multidisciplinary approach, which is a synthesis of key academic and industrial skills, that high quality training can be delivered to researchers to address this economic and individual burden. Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) will be located within internationally renowned academic institutions with state-of-the-art facilities and will be involved in projects organized around key themes which cascade over basic, oriented and applied research in a truly bench to bedside and beyond manner. New knowledge generated by the ESRs will be exploited by the Experienced Researchers (ERs) who will be located in three of Europes leading Small-Medium Sized Enterprises in this arena. Here the ERs will strengthen their scientific competencies in a market-driven environment and advance their managerial and knowledge transfer skills. As well as playing a significant role in training-through-research, Industry will also be a central element of the Structured Training. The latter includes Network-Wide Workshops open to the international community, secondments and the co-hosting of the Final Conference in conjunction with the EuroSpine Meeting organized by the Spine Society for Europe. All training will emphasise both complementary and scientific skills, thus significantly enhancing the career prospects of the ESRs/ERs and creating future research leaders.

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