Thursday, November 18, 2010

Hal Exoskeleton For Wheelchair Users Updated On CNN

CNN has given an update on a the HAL Exoskeleton Suit. Amongst the new points mentioned there include:

There are 140 HAL suits in use in Japan, renting for just under $2,000 a
month

I have not seen that number before of 140 suits. This means that Cyberdyne is earning just $3.3 million per year in Japan? I would have thought it would have been considerably higher.

Professor Sankai is in the final stages of bringing the suits to Sweden and
Denmark

I am certain that HAL will launch in Europe soon. Just wish we had more information about when.

Another variation is more scaled down; looking to a future when the robotic legs
are so thin the patient could wear them underneath clothing

This is a prediction I would make. One day exoskeletons will be so advanced, they will be like prosthetic legs, that is, hidden under clothes. Paraplegics will walk and except for a slightly different gait, no one will know they are using an exoskeleton.

The problem with articles like this is that they are one dimensional. CNN presents this story as though there is only one exoskeleton in development. They do not mention, for example that Rex Bionics has an exoskeleton which is on the market in New Zealand or that ReWalk from Argo is currently launching in Europe, or that eLEGS from Berkeley Bionics will soon launch in the USA. Read about all of the leading exoskeletons for wheelchair users on the Exoskeleton Website.

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