Smart Suit to Monitor Body Biomechanics
Thursday, July 19 2012
The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, Boston, MA, received a $2.6 million contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop a smart suit that could improve field soldiers’ physical endurance.The proposed suit, while being lightweight, efficient, and nonrestrictive would incorporate several novel Wyss technologies. The system proposes to monitor the body's biomechanics to detect the onset of fatigue and to help the wearer maintain balance by using low-level mechanical vibrations to boost the body's sensory functions.
While DARPA is focused on assisting and protecting field soldiers, the technologies being developed could have other applications as well. For instance, similar soft-wearable devices could help to increase endurance in the elderly and help improve mobility for people with physical disabilities.