Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

Faculty Candidate Seminar


Intent Recognition for Amputees using Powered Lower Limb Prostheses


Dr. Aaron Young


Northwestern University


Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at 3:00:00 PM


MRDC Building, Room 4211


Dr. Jun Ueda


New powered lower limb prostheses are being developed that allow amputees to better traverse multiple types of terrain. Current devices are not capable of transitioning automatically and seamlessly between locomotion modes such as sitting, standing, level walking, stairs and slopes. The focus of my study was to enhance intent recognition interfaces with an electromyographic (EMG) interfaces. Additionally, novel bayesian algorithms were applied to incorporate the time history information of both mechanosensory and electromyographic signals to further improve intent recognition accuracy. Eight transfemoral amputees walked on a powered knee and ankle prosthesis using the intent recognition interface, and it was shown that incorporating EMG and time history information significantly reduced the real-time misclassification rate. These results suggest that the application of myoelectric and pattern recognition technology can consistently and accurately predict amputees' intent for every day activities.


Aaron J. Young received the B.S. degree and M.S. degrees in biomedical engineering from Purdue University in 2009 and Northwestern University in 2011, respectively. He is currently working toward the Ph.D. degree at Northwestern University in the Center for Bionic Medicine at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. His research interests include neural signal processing and pattern recognition using advanced machine learning techniques for control of myoelectric prosthesis for the upper and lower limb.


Refreshments will be served.