Robotics

Ekso Bionics announces airier, more flexible Evo exoskeleton

Ekso Bionics announces airier,...
Like its predecessor, the Evo Upper Body Exoskeleton provides up to 15 lb of support to each arm
Like its predecessor, the Evo Upper Body Exoskeleton provides up to 15 lb of support to each arm
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The Evo requires no batteries
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The Evo requires no batteries
Like its predecessor, the Evo Upper Body Exoskeleton provides up to 15 lb of support to each arm
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Like its predecessor, the Evo Upper Body Exoskeleton provides up to 15 lb of support to each arm
The Evo can be put on by its wearer, without any assistance
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The Evo can be put on by its wearer, without any assistance
View gallery - 3 images

A couple of years ago, we heard how Ford was supplying its assembly plant employees with an assistive exoskeleton called the EksoVest. Now, the maker of that device has unveiled a lighter and limberer but just as capable model.

Worn on the upper body, Ekso Bionics' original EksoVest was made to support the wearer's arms as they performed repetitive overhead tasks. It didn't utilize motors or anything else electrical to do so, instead using gas springs – these provided a user-adjustable 5 to 15 lb (2.3 to 6.8 kg) of lift support per arm.

The company's recently announced Evo Upper Body Exoskeleton offers that same amount of support, but features a new low-profile multi-link design that is claimed to make it lighter and more flexible … and thus also comfier.

The Evo can be put on by its wearer, without any assistance
The Evo can be put on by its wearer, without any assistance

Aimed at "eliminating work-related injuries to the neck, shoulder, and back," it reportedly allows for more freedom of movement while performing overhead tasks, or even when doing things like reaching into a back pocket.

At the same time, though, the Evo contacts the wearer's body at fewer points than the EksoVest, and covers over less of it – this leaves the user's back exposed, so they stay cooler. That said, it's still compatible with the standard third-party safety harnesses that are required for elevated work.

We're still waiting to hear back on the weight of the Evo, along with its pricing and availability. In the meantime, you can see it in use in the video below.

Source: Ekso Bionics

Introducing EVO

View gallery - 3 images
4 comments
Username
It supports the back, the shoulder and the upper arm, leaving the elbow to bare the brunt.
JeffK
Not a good plan when your elbows are shot and the current artificial replacement joints limit you to lifting about five pounds.
Techrex
?? Wouldn't these workers need another version of this device that enables them to keep STANDING all day long?
Ginkoweed
The elbow would comparatively take more load, but the shoulder and back originally took that weight, and this takes care of those.