Politecnico di Torino - Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24 - 10129 Torino, ITALY

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Exoskeleton for instrumentation support

Articulated armExoskeletonFatigue reductionHuman labourOccupational Safety


A passive exoskeleton for manual handling of heavy work tools by an operator. The device includes a wearable structure supporting the operator’s body, and articulated supports, for supporting and handling at least one work tool. The handling is implemented with at least one degree of freedom.

Technical features

The wearable device simplifies the manual handling of work tools. In particular, the exoskeleton supports tools that are moved continuously, and bring a continuous movement of masses and vibrations, that are unbalanced. Some examples of such tools are pole-mounted devices for cleaning glass, agricultural tools designed to operate at some distance from the user’s body, such as pruning hedges and trees, or shaking olive trees. In these circumstances, there is a need to facilitate the use of such tools, to be moved manually, by better distributing the weight and other forces acting on the person, to reduce fatigue of the upper limbs and, at the same time, improve human balance during exercise, reducing the risk of accidents or accidental falls. The device aims to favour human dexterity, to be practical to dress, and to make the worker safe in unstable and dangerous terrain.

Possible Applications

  • Harvesting of olives and fruit in general;
  • Pruning of tree branches;
  • Cleaning of glass and exterior surfaces of buildings;
  • Whitewashing of walls and laying of plasters;
  • Gluing of billboards;
  • Handling of garments in the warehouse.


  • Increased work safety (reduced work at height);
  • Less back fatigue (better body balance);
  • Possibility to move the tool with one hand only;
  • Increased work speed;
  • Ease of use (good fit);
  • Economical exoskeleton requiring little maintenance.