Skip to Content

Motorfoot

Stroke victims and other people suffering from “drop foot”-a condition in which the front of the foot can’t be controlled-generally wear stiff braces to keep their afflicted feet from flopping and dragging when they walk. But a device under development could give them a robotic boost for improved mobility. Instructor Hugh Herr and graduate student Joaquin Blaya of a joint MIT-Harvard program in health technology, together with electrical engineer Gill Pratt of Olin College in Needham, MA, built an ankle brace with a motor that raises and lowers the front of the foot as the heel strikes the ground and lifts again, providing more natural movement and a reduced risk of falling. The battery-powered device, developed at MIT’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, uses algorithms modeled on “biological information about how a normal ankle is controlled,” Herr says. The first tests of the contraption on real patients are expected to begin late this year.

Keep Reading

Most Popular

individual aging affects covid outcomes concept
individual aging affects covid outcomes concept

Anti-aging drugs are being tested as a way to treat covid

Drugs that rejuvenate our immune systems and make us biologically younger could help protect us from the disease’s worst effects.

Europe's AI Act concept
Europe's AI Act concept

A quick guide to the most important AI law you’ve never heard of

The European Union is planning new legislation aimed at curbing the worst harms associated with artificial intelligence.

Uber Autonomous Vehicles parked in a lot
Uber Autonomous Vehicles parked in a lot

It will soon be easy for self-driving cars to hide in plain sight. We shouldn’t let them.

If they ever hit our roads for real, other drivers need to know exactly what they are.

crypto winter concept
crypto winter concept

Crypto is weathering a bitter storm. Some still hold on for dear life.

When a cryptocurrency’s value is theoretical, what happens if people quit believing?

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.