Manipal Journal of Science and Technology


The complex ankle foot movements of patients suffering from muscular and neurological abnormalities are supported and restored by an active ankle foot orthosis (AFO). Foot drop is a symptom in which the muscles around the ankle become weak due to the paralysis of the neural system. Patients with foot drop show abnormal gait patterns, which can reduce the speed of walking and increase the energy consumption. The gait pattern deviation in patients with foot drop can be corrected by designing a fuzzy controller for gait pattern. This paper focuses on designing a fuzzy controller for an active AFO that can be used to assist a patient with impaired ankle foot joint. The controller designed for AFO can provide both plantar flexion and dorsiflexion assistance. The force sensors are placed inside the soles of the left leg shoe, which is assumed healthy. During each gait cycle the controller based on the sensor information and fuzzy inference system estimate the position of the impaired foot. The sensor data is transmitted wirelessly to the controller using Xbee module, which uses IEEE 802.15.4 standard. NI myRIO is an embedded hardware device with a processor and a reconfigurable FPGA into which fuzzy controller is deployed.

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