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Honda Walk Assist Device

Honda has unveiled walk assit legs that can help the elderly or even workers who work standing or in a crouching position for a long time. The   awesome gadget helps by redistributing body weight along its frame and lightening the burden on a workers' real legs.
The concept is still at an experimental stage, but elderly people and people undergoing rehabilitation who need support for their leg muscles and joints are the main target. Honda will test the walking assist device at its Saitama Factory (in Sayama, Saitama).

Walk Assist
According to Honda, the device supports a large portion of the person’s body weight while walking, squatting and even climbing stairs. The user simply steps into the device’s built-in shoes and leans back into the high seat. Honda developed the device after researching walking techniques for its humanoid robot, Asimo, and said the device was developed for people who can walk and maneuver on their own, but need a little extra assistance.
The device consists of a pair of shoes, a frame that sits in between your legs, and a seat. When worn it takes the strain off the hips, knees and ankles so there is less strain on your muscles. It is powered by a rechargeable battery that can operate the walk assist device for up to 2 hours and weighs 6.5kgs

The system has a computer, motor, gears, battery and sensors embeded in it so it responds to a person's movements, according to Honda Motor Co.

Pricing and commercial product plans are still undecided. Japan's No. 2 automaker will begin testing a prototype with its assembly line workers later this month for feedback.

The need for such mechanical help is expected to grow in Japan, which has one of the most rapidly aging societies in the world.

Honda Walker Assist

"We used ASIMO's technology for developing the walking assist device," Masato Hirose, a senior engineer at Honda Research and Development, told AFP. "ASIMO is designed to be used as a tool, but the walking assist device is designed to complement real human bodies," he said. "Both will exist for the sake of people. First, we hope to have visible results in rehabilitation and other medical fields," Hirose said. "Then we will look at welfare as another target."
"The device will support a portion of the person’s body weight by lifting the seat as the frame between the shoe and seat bends and extends, just like knees, with the force from the motor. As a result, the load on leg muscles and joints (in the hip, knees, and ankles) is reduced," the company added.

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