Design and Control of a Powered Transfemoral Prosthesis

Int J Rob Res. 2008 Feb 1;27(2):263-273. doi: 10.1177/0278364907084588.


The paper describes the design and control of a transfemoral prosthesis with powered knee and ankle joints. The initial prototype is a pneumatically actuated powered-tethered device, which is intended to serve as a laboratory test bed for a subsequent self-powered version. The prosthesis design is described, including its kinematic optimization and the design of a three-axis socket load cell that measures the forces and moments of interaction between the socket and prosthesis. A gait controller is proposed based on the use of passive impedance functions that coordinates the motion of the prosthesis with the user during level walking. The control approach is implemented on the prosthesis prototype and experimental results are shown that demonstrate the promise of the active prosthesis and control approach in restoring fully powered level walking to the user.