• Robots

    To investigate human and animal locomotion, a number of legged robots were developed in our group since 2004. Read about the bipedal robot BioBiped or the research in the Locomorph project focusing on morphology and morphosis strategies in locomotion.

  • Prosthesis

    To investigate models of the muscle-tendon dynamics on humans we developed the research platform PAKO. Using our insights on gait biomechanics, walking and running could be realized with the robotic Walk-Run Ankle prosthesis.

  • Facilities

    Several indoor and outdoor facilities with state-of-the-art measurement equipment helps us to perform experiments on humans, animals and robots. Details can be found here: Facilities.

  • Experiments

    Both in research projects and in teaching courses at the Sports Science Institut at TU Darmstadt experimental studies are performed. Outcomes from student research and educational projects on biomechanics can be found in the awarded Teaching Wiki of our institute.

  • Models

    Models help us to study the fundamental principles of human and animal locomotion. The derived biomechanical concepts can be applied to bipedal robots, exoskeletons or prosthesis. In the European project Balance, we are working on an active orthosis.

News

Pick of the Month

Sensor-Motor Maps for Decoding Reflex Contribution

Figure 2. Sensor-Motor Maps for vertical hopping (Schumacher and Seyfarth, 2017).

We present the concept of Sensor-Motor Maps for investigating the blending and processing of sensory pathways. In these maps, the resulting motor output (e.g. motion stability or performance, energy efficiency etc.) can be used to evaluate the functional contribution of blended sensory signals (Fig. 1).

To explore this methodology we chose a simple hopping model from Geyer et al. (2003) and tested the robustness of the Sensor-Motor Maps by changing the body morphology of the system as well as properties of the environment. We found compact and consistent map topologies for all conditions, suggesting the that the Sensor-Motor Maps can be a valuable tool to investigate sensory integration.

The related work is available here: Open Access.

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