Chairless Chair solution offered as leg exoskeleton for work

August 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: Panasonic unveils wearable 4K camcorder

More information:

Related Stories

Panasonic unveils wearable 4K camcorder

January 6, 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.

Shipyard workers test out robot suits in South Korea

August 5, 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 not replace humans ...

Recommended for you

Toyota promises better mileage and ride with Prius hybrid

October 13, 2015

Toyota Motor Corp. released details for its fourth-generation Prius on Tuesday, promising that improvements in the battery, engine, wind resistance and weight mean better mileage for the world's top-selling hybrid car.

Facebook to test mobile app shopping tab

October 12, 2015

Facebook said Monday that it will begin testing a shopping tab for its mobile app as it works to ramp up advertising and online commerce offerings.

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

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.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.