Title: Low-Cost Force Sensors Embedded in Physical Human-Machine Interfaces: Concept, Exemplary Realization on Upper-Body Exoskeleton, and Validation
Authors: Hoffmann, Niclas 
Ersoysal, Samet
Prokop, Gilbert
Hoefer, Matthias
Weidner, Robert 
Language: eng
Keywords: Exoskeleton;dtec.bw
Issue Date: 10-Jan-2022
Document Type: Article
Project: Digitale Entwicklungs- und Validierungsumgebung für physische Unterstützungssysteme zur Optimierung der Mensch-Technik-Interaktion (MTI) und -Schnittstellen am Beispiel von Exoskeletten 
Journal / Series / Working Paper (HSU): Sensors
Volume: 22
Issue: 2
In modern times, the collaboration between humans and machines increasingly rises, combining their respective benefits. The direct physical support causes interaction forces in human-machine interfaces, whereas their form determines both the effectiveness and comfort of the collaboration. However, their correct detection requires various sensor characteristics and remains challenging. Thus, this paper presents a developed low-cost sensor pad working with a silicone capsule and a piezoresistive pressure sensor. Its measurement accuracy is validated in both an isolated testing environment and a laboratory study with four test subjects (gender-balanced), and an application integrated in interfaces of an active upper-body exoskeleton. In the material-testing machine, it becomes apparent that the sensor pad generally features the capability of reliably determining normal forces on its surface until a certain threshold. This is also proven in the real application, where the measurement data of three sensor pads spatially embedded in the exoskeletal interface are compared to the data of an installed multi-axis load cell and a high-resolution flexible pressure map. Here, the consideration of three sensor pads potentially enables detection of exoskeletal support on the upper arm as well as "poor" fit conditions such as uneven pressure distributions that recommend immediate system adjustments for ergonomic improvements.
Organization Units (connected with the publication): DTEC.bw 
ISSN: 14248220
Publisher DOI: 10.3390/s22020505
Appears in Collections:3 - Reported Publications

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