Comau has released the first Muscular Aiding Tech Exoskeleton – MATE, which is a lightweight, passive, portable upper-limb exoskeleton.
Released in China, it was developed in collaboration with ÖSSUR, an Icelandic leading non-invasive orthopedic company, and IUVO, a spin-off company of the Italian BioRobotics Institute specialized in wearable technologies.
MATE can reproduce shoulder movement with joint axes parallel to the user’s shoulder axes, providing effective gesture support and stable movement assistance to reduce the burden of repetitive tasks.
It has three main components: the garment interface, mechanical shoulder chain and torque generator box. All parts of the garment interface can be in direct contact with the user’s body.
The mechanical shoulder chain can follow physiological movements of the user’s shoulder without resistance or misalignment, thereby facilitating the user’s free movement.
The torque generator box stores and transforms potential mechanical energy in order to create an adjustable assistive torque (7 levels). During manual and repetitive tasks, MATE transfers much of the burden away from the worker’s arms to the pelvis, reducing fatigue.
MATE is ergonomically designed to fit workers, with a compact structure. It is comfortable, easy to wear, lightweight and modular. Moreover, all parts that come in contact with the operator can be adjusted to any body shape to ensure the greatest comfort possible.
It is designed for repetitive and labour-intensive work such as car assembly, tool handling and transportation. MATE was designed in close collaboration with factory workers engaged in manual activities.
The wearable technology reduces the user’s fatigue, improves posture, enhances the precision of repetitive tasks and increases the user’s job quality.