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Low power consumption assistive device for knee movement

Assistive deviceDriver with actuatorKnee movementLocking clampsLow Power Consumption


State-of-the-art knee movement devices are known to include a garment that can be attached to the waist and a garment that can be connected to the user’s calf. Said devices are configured to switch from an active to an inactive state. Immediately after passing into inactivity, the force put into effect in the active state and transmitted to the calf garment is automatically and progressively withdrawn, ceasing to assist the patient’s knee. Keeping the device constantly active, however, result in instability and a huge consumption of power. In this context, the objective of the present invention is to provide a device to assist the movement of the knee that overcomes the limitations just mentioned.

Technical features

Inside the waist garment is anchored an actuator, having a driver configured to be switched between an active and inactive state. A transmission cable connects the actuator to the calf garment; the former is configured to transform the rotating force of the driver into the tension force to be transmitted to the latter. The actuator includes: a first gear connected to the driver and a second gear that operationally engages the first one. The transmission cable is connected to said second gear. Locking clamps are then employed which operationally engage the first and second gear and are configured to be switched between a locking configuration, in which the second gear is prevented from rotating, and a release configuration, where the rotation of the first gear makes the second gear rotate so the driver can transmit the tension force to the calf garment. The locking clamps are configured to be switched from the locking configuration to the release configuration due to the rotation of the first gear, when the driver is in the active state, and vice versa, from release to locking, when the driver is idle. TRL=4.

Possible Applications

  • Assist knee movement of a patient undergoing rehabilitation.


  • Allows to properly assist the movement of the user’s knee, reducing the risk of incorrect movements
  • Requires low power for its proper functioning
  • Does not cause a high discomfort in the user wearing it, reducing the risk of not using the assistive device.