Chairless Chair solution offered as leg exoskeleton for work

Aug 22, 2014 by Nancy Owano weblog
Credit: noonee

We have read the medical news about exoskeletons developed to empower people to walk and leap but there is another pathway for the application of exoskeletons, this time being a wearable device that can help working people in settings such as factories experience better comfort. Some workers have tasks that make it difficult for them to avoid the stress and fatigue of having to stand, bend, and stoop for long periods, assuming postures that may cause physical, muscle-related problems. The creators say the Chairolution is here, and they are referring to their product, the Chairless Chair. In this instance, researchers are promoting a wearable device that can help people at work maintain optimal posture. This is a wearable chair that could be worn by production-line workers; the wearable chair idea is to relieve the stress of tasks that can cause such problems and pain. Unhealthy postures also lead to fatigue. Whether the difficulty is pain or fatigue or both, the worker's issue becomes a productivity issue, which is not beneficial to employers. The company behind this wearable is Zurich-based noonee. The noonee website describes the product as a wearable ergonomic leg device; or a leg exoskeleton; or a powered, lightweight and energy-efficient lower limb posture-support device.

The product is also presented as a "mechatronic device" worn on the legs, which allows the user to walk or run when not activated. Once activated, the Chairless Chair uses a portable variable damper to engage and hold the person's , relieving the stress on and joints. "The user just needs to move into the desired pose, activate the Chairless Chair and profit from the provided posture support." The Chairless Chair is based on research from the Bio-Inspired Robotics laboratory at ETH Zurich. A belt secures the wearable to the hips and its straps wrap around the thigh. Since it is the chair that can carry the person's body weight, the stress on leg muscles and joints is relieved.

Jacopo Prisco in CNN said the runs for about 24 hours on a single 6V battery and "An aluminium and carbon fiber frame keeps the overall weight of the Chairless Chair at just two kilograms, so it doesn't burden the wearer with too much excess weight." Production-line trials are to start in Germany with BMW in September and with Audi later in the year, he added.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

Keith Gunura, CEO and co-founder of noonee, said in CNN that, in moving forward, the company envisions the product in more than factory settings—riding on a crowded train, for example, or having to stand behind a retail counter, or picking fruit.

Explore further: Shipyard workers test out robot suits in South Korea

More information: www.noonee.ch/

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Shipyard workers test out robot suits in South Korea

Aug 05, 2014

Industry leaders looking to see how automation and product ion will behave on the next levels will see two technology paths, robots offered as replacements for human labor and robotic technologies that will ...

Panasonic unveils wearable 4K camcorder

Jan 06, 2014

Panasonic unveiled a product Monday that combines two big tech trends—ultra HD and wearable devices— with a portable, camera that hooks onto your ear and records in ultra-high definition 4K video.

Taiwan's Acer to launch 'smartband' wearable device

May 30, 2014

Taiwan's leading personal computer maker Acer announced Friday that it will debut its first wearable device at the upcoming Computex trade show before shipping the products later this year.

Recommended for you

New iPad cellular models have Apple SIM flexibility

Oct 19, 2014

Cellular-enabled iPad models are under a new paradigm, said AppleInsider, regarding the Apple SIM. Apple's newest iPad models with cellular connectivity use a SIM card which tech sites said could eventually ...

Thinner iPads, sharper iMacs in Apple's lineup (Update)

Oct 16, 2014

(AP)—Apple unveiled a thinner iPad Thursday with a faster processor and a better camera as it tries to drive excitement for tablets amid slowing demand. The company also released an update to its Mac operating ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

pntaylor
not rated yet Aug 22, 2014
While standing, for long periods, puts compression stress on the knee joints, this contraption
appears to put negative stress on the joint, to pull it apart.