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Marko Markovic, Strahinja Dosen, Christian Cipriani, Dejan Popovic, and Dario Farina (2014)

Stereovision and augmented reality for closed-loop control of grasping in hand prostheses

Journal of Engineering 11(046001):1-17.  (export entry)

BFNT-Chair Neuroinformatics
Objective. Technologically advanced assistive devices are nowadays available to restore grasping, but effective and effortless control integrating both feed-forward (commands) and feedback (sensory information) is still missing. The goal of this work was to develop a user friendly interface for the semi-automatic and closed-loop control of grasping and to test its feasibility. Approach. We developed a controller based on stereovision to automatically select grasp type and size and augmented reality (AR) to provide artificial proprioceptive feedback. The system was experimentally tested in healthy subjects using a dexterous hand prosthesis to grasp a set of daily objects. The subjects wore AR glasses with an integrated stereo-camera pair, and triggered the system via a simple myoelectric interface. Main results. The results demonstrated that the subjects got easily acquainted with the semi-autonomous control. The stereovision grasp decoder successfully estimated the grasp type and size in realistic, cluttered environments. When allowed (forced) to correct the automatic system decisions, the subjects successfully utilized the AR feedback and achieved close to ideal system performance. Significance. The new method implements a high level, low effort control of complex functions in addition to the low level closed-loop control. The latter is achieved by providing rich visual feedback, which is integrated into the real life environment. The proposed system is an effective interface applicable with small alterations for many advanced prosthetic and orthotic/therapeutic rehabilitation devices.