Ottobock launches the world’s smallest Exoskeleton at Hannover
Ottobock presents new exoskeletons for ergonomic workplaces during the Hannover Messe trade show
Hannover, April 2019 – Ottobock, a global market leader for med-tech products and fitting concepts specialising in prosthetics, orthotics and human mobility, presented its industrial exoskeletons for the first time at the Hannover Messe trade show recently. Visitors had the opportunity to personally test the passive exoskeletons in the Paexo product family and experience the relief they provide. “Exoskeletons designed for industrial settings will bring about permanent changes in many working environments,” said Dr Sönke Rössing, Head of Ottobock Industrials. “They can play a major role in preventing workplace injuries in many sectors, and help to make workplaces more ergonomic. Based on our 100 years of biomechanical and orthopaedic expertise, we are driving this change.”
Paexo Thumb – the smallest exoskeleton in the world
The new Paexo Thumb supports people who place strain on their thumbs at work on a daily basis. Such activities can include clipping, inserting or plugging tasks on assembly lines. The small and extremely lightweight exoskeleton relieves the thumb by up to 70% by redirecting forces to the entire hand. This relieves strain on the thumb joints and protects the tip of the thumb against mechanical influences. In addition, users automatically assume an ergonomic hand position when wearing the Paexo Thumb.
“The Paexo Thumb is the smallest exoskeleton in the world – but it has an impressive effect,” says Rössing. “It was developed using the new opportunities offered by 3D printing and in close collaboration between our biomechanics experts and industry partners.” Ottobock developed and tested the Paexo Thumb together with companies in the automotive and home appliances sectors. The new device was deployed in paint shops and on assembly lines, for example. “The potential of the Paexo Thumb was clearly evident in these settings. It’s a simple yet innovative solution for preventing joint problems in the hand,” says Rössing.
The Paexo Thumb is one of the first Ottobock products to be fabricated in series production using a 3D printer. The exoskeleton is “printed” in Germany, in seven sizes, and will be available from the end of April 2019. For those buying in bulk, prices start at €99 per piece for larger quantities. Companies interested in testing the product can obtain sample kits with seven pieces for 149 euros
Other exoskeletons on display included the Paexo Wrist and the Paexo Shoulder.