Flexible Dry Electrodes for EMG Acquisition within Lower Extremity Prosthetic Sockets

Yeon, Seong Ho, et al. "Flexible Dry Electrodes for EMG Acquisition within Lower Extremity Prosthetic Sockets." 2020 8th IEEE RAS/EMBS International Conference for Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics (BioRob). IEEE.


Acquisition of surface electromyography (sEMG) from a person with an amputated lower extremity (LE) during prosthesis-assisted walking remains a significant challenge due to the dynamic nature of the gait cycle. Current solutions to sEMG-based neural control of active LE prostheses involve a combination of customized electrodes, prosthetic sockets, and liners. These technologies are generally: (i) incompatible with a subject's existing prosthetic socket and liners; (ii) uncomfortable to use; and (iii) expensive. This paper presents a flexible dry electrode design for sEMG acquisition within LE prosthetic sockets which seeks to address these issues. Design criteria and corresponding design decisions are explained and a proposed flexible electrode prototype is presented. Performances of the proposed electrode and commercial Ag/AgCl electrodes are compared in seated subjects without amputations. Quantitative analyses suggest comparable signal qualities for the proposed novel electrode and commercial electrodes. The proposed electrode is demonstrated in a subject with a unilateral transtibial amputation wearing her own liner, socket, and the portable sEMG processing platform in a preliminary standing and level ground walking study. Qualitative analyses suggest the feasibility of real-time sEMG data collection from load-bearing, ambulatory subjects.

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