How 3D Printing Helping Disabled People

Exosuit is 3D printed suit which helps disabled people to walk again.

In 1992, a freak skiing accident left Amanda Boxtel paralyzed from the waist down. Her doctor said she would never walk again. But this week at the Singularity University summit in Budapest, Hungary, Boxtel was able to walk with the help of a 3D-printed exosuit.

The suit is the result of a collaboration between North Carolina-based 3D-printing company 3D Systems and California-based exoskeleton developers Ekso Bionics. To make it, developers scanned Boxtel’s legs and back with professional laser scanners. 3Dsystems used the scans to design several custom-fitted parts, which were then 3D printed in ultra-durable nylon.

Disabled People

The rest of the suit is comprised of motors and scanners, developed and tested by Ekso Bionics, that help wearers move their limbs.The onboard scanners detect the user’s motion, then tell the motors how much more power to add in order to help the wearer walk.

This isn’t the first so-called exosuit that Ekso Bionics has developed. It worked with military contractor Lockheed Martin to develop the HULC (Human Universal Load Carrier), a military exosuit to help soldiers carry heavy loads in the field.

Watch video 3D Printed Hybrid Robotic Exoskeleton Helps Paraplegic Woman Walk Again:

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