Hardware-in-the-loop equipment for the development of an automatic perturbator for clinical evaluation of human balance control

Carlo Ferraresi, Daniela Maffiodo, Walter Franco, Giovanni Gerardo Muscolo, Carlo De Benedictis, Maria Paterna, Oliviero Walter Pica, Marco Genovese, Daniel Pacheco Quiñones, Silvestro Roatta, Zeevi Dvir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Nowadays, increasing attention is being paid to techniques aimed at assessing a subject’s ability to maintain or regain control of balance, thus reducing the risk of falls. To this end, posturographic analyses are performed in different clinical settings, both in unperturbed and perturbed conditions. This article presents a new Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) equipment designed for the development of an automatic perturbator for postural control analysis, capable of providing controlled mechanical stimulation by means of an impulsive force exerted on a given point of the body. The experimental equipment presented here includes the perturbator and emulates its interaction with both the subject’s body and the operator performing the test. The development of the perturbator and of the entire HIL equipment is described, including component selection, modeling of the entire system, and experimentally verified simulations used to study and define the most appropriate control laws.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8886
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalApplied Sciences (Switzerland)
Volume10
Issue number24
DOIs
StatePublished - 2 Dec 2020

Keywords

  • Hardware-In-the-Loop
  • Human–machine interaction
  • Impulsive force control
  • Pneumo-tronics
  • Postural control
  • Posturography

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