Cyberdyne HAL Thought-Controlled Exo-Skeleton

Cyberdyne HAL robot suit

HAL has developed to expand and improve physical capabilities. The power units are attached on each joint of HAL. The torque of power units are converted from HAL to wearer's limb through the mold fastening equipments. Potentiometers are attached to the each joint in order to measure the joint angles. The FRF sensors are embeded into shoes to detect the CoP(Center of Point). The bioelectrical signal sensors are detected to the signals such as myoelectricity. In addition, a computer and batteries are attached on a wearer's waist, so the wearer can move in stand-alone mode.

Collected from: Cyberdyne HAL robot suit

What's "HAL" (Hybrid Assistive Limb®)? - CYBERDYNE

When a person attempts to move, nerve signals are sent from the brain to the muscles via motoneuron, moving the musculoskeletal system as a consequence. At this moment, very weak biosignals can be detected on the surface of the skin. "HAL" catches these signals through a sensor attached on the skin of the wearer. Based on the signals obtained, the power unit is controlled to move the joint unitedly with the wearer's muscle movement, enabling to support the wearer's daily activities. This is what we call a 'voluntary control system' that provides movement interpreting the wearer's intention from the biosignals in advance of the actual movement. Not only a 'voluntary control system' "HAL" has, but also a 'robotic autonomous control system' that provides human-like movement based on a robotic system which integrally work together with the 'autonomous control system'. "HAL" is the world's first cyborg-type robot controlled by this unique Hybrid System.

CES mystery gadget: Cyberdyne HAL robot suit

Robot Suit HAL Demo at CES 2011 - IEEE Spectrum

Technology journalist Evan Ackerman became the first person in the United States to test the robotic exoskeleton Hybrid Assistive Limb, or HAL, created by Japanese company Cyberdyne

To use the suit, Cyberdyne employee Takatoshi Kuno first attached sensors to Ackerman's legs. The sensors monitor the electrical activity of nerves to control the suit's dc motors.

The suit works on intent: the user needs only to "think" of moving his or her legs -- the suit does the rest. That's because the brain sends signals to the muscles of the legs, and the sensors detect them.