Wearable exoskeletons are not new to the world, as most of them are aimed at helping physically disabled walk again. But these robotic designs tend to be very expensive that offering them commercially is not quite feasible. So, with the aim to provide something fairly affordable to public, California-based robotics company SuitX has developed a modular wearable exoskeleton for restoring mobility to paraplegics and permanently paralyzed for US $40,000.
We know the price is still pretty high, as much as a mid-range car, but it’s half the typical price for powered exoskeletons. Comparatively, it’s a fair deal. Developed at University of California-Berkeley’s Robotics and Human Engineering Lab, the robotic device is designed to be worn around hips and knees with small motors attached to standard orthotics.
Once the wearer is all geared up, he/she can easily can control the movement of each leg and support the upper body with a pair of crutches. Plus, the wearer will be able to walk up to 1.1 miles per hour by pushing buttons incorporated into the pair of crutches. Besides that, the caregivers can even tweak the robotic suit’s parameters all thanks to its companion smartphone app.
Weighing 27-pound, Phoenix is among the lightest and cheapest exoskeletons. It will be a great solution for physically disabled people to live freely like most of us, without depending on any other person for movement, as well as reaching out at certain things at home. The SuitX team is now taking orders for Phoenix and its shipping is expected to begin sometime in March.
For now, you can check out the video given below to see how the device works.