LEVERAGING LARGER MARKETS TO ENCOURAGE INNOVATION IN PROSTHETICS: DESIGN OF MYOPEN, AN OPEN MYOELECTRIC SIGNAL PROCESSOR FOR USE AS AN INPUT DEVICE FOR VIDEO GAMING AND HOBBY ROBOTICS
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The prosthetic arm market is small; perhaps 70,000 people lack arms in the US. This, coupled with the difficulty of making and controlling a mechatronic hand replacement, has forestalled innovation in arm prostheses in the fifty years since its introduction. Since the Boston Arm project in 1965, the popular press has promised thought-controlled prosthetic arms, yet the promises of scientific research have not often been kept in the clinic.  We aim to surmount these obstacles by developing an open myoelectric signal processor targeted at researchers, hobbyists, and video game enthusiasts. Our device is capable of processing 16 channels of surface electromyographic (EMG) (or other data), applying pattern recognition algorithms in real-time via a power-efficient Blackfin Digital Signal Processor (DSP), and delivering the results through ethernet, I2C, RS232, USB, and Lego NXT bus. We hope that this open, commodity level platform will become a disruptive technology, encouraging experimentation in the algorithms and applications of a field that has been sequestered too long in the research lab.
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Copyright 2002, 2005 and 2008, The University of New Brunswick.
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