Project McArm is close to its finalisation

The original planning of the McArm project would have led to finalisation in March 2014. The realisation in a prototype version of an advanced motion controlled exoskeleton for the arm function is quite a challenge. Our developers requested for some more time to work on fundamental issues like measuring, control and modelling. This has paid off- a six month prolongation has been allowed resulting in more mature outcomes. Much work has been done since 2013 and the first half of 2014. All partners kept a good focus on their specific tasks and in a good spirit many results were achieved. In 2013 a prototype demonstrating novel control principles as well as a first working 2D prototype were realised. Based on the many lessons learned we went back to the drawing boards in our efforts to realise world's best exoskeleton for the human arm of very challenged persons. All developmental work is done in interaction with clinical and university partners. Laboratory and field measurements made it possible to address complex questions about muscle- skeleton models better and make more educated choices for the architecture of the system. Other developmental work was done on the rehab training version of the future McArm product. Tasks in this domain related to understanding of the role of haptics, serious gaming development, game mechanics. Clinical partners did innovative work on the development of outcome measurement scales to be used in the evaluation stage. Other important supporting technology developments concerned light materials (carbon fiber) construction for which a 'teaching prototype' was realised. Last but not least or partner TU Eindhoven worked on a novel multi degree actuator, an activity that will be continued in the near future.

The project Motion Controlled Arm Support will come to an end on September 30, 2014. This is only the end of an intensive and challenging development project. After this Focal has to take next steps to realise first products. To inform stakeholders of what has been achieved a wide overview will be given in a special session on the McArm project. This will be held at the Design of Medical Devices Conference 2014 on October 23 at Delft. Futher announcements will follow. Please keep an eye at the website of this conference: designofmedicaldevices.eu or contact us!.