Development of a Planar Haptic Robot with Minimized Impedance

Keonyoung Oh, William Z. Rymer, Ilaria Plenzio, Ferdinando A. Mussa-Ivaldi, Seunghan Park, Junho Choi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Several studies have reported that stroke survivors displayed improved voluntary planar movements when forces supporting the upper limb increased, and when impeding forces decreased. Earlier haptic devices interacting with the human upper limb were potentially impacted by undesired residual friction force and device inertia. To explore natural, undisturbed voluntary motor control in stroke survivors, we describe the development of a Decoupled-Operational space Robot for wide Impedance Switching (DORIS) with minimized mechanical impedances. This design is based on a novel decoupling mechanism separating the end effector from a manipulator. While the user manipulates the end effector freely inside the workspace of the decoupling mechanism, to which a manipulator of the robot is attached, the robot detects such change in position using a lightweight linkage system. The manipulator of the robot then follows such movements of the end effector swiftly. Consequently, the user can explore the extended workspace, which can be as large as the manipulator's workspace. Since the end effector is mechanically decoupled from the manipulators and actuators, the user can remain unaffected by the mechanical impedances of the manipulator. Mechanical impedances perceived by the user and bandwidth of the control system were estimated. The developed robot was capable of detecting larger maximum acceleration and larger jerk of the reaching movement in chronic stroke survivors with hemiparesis. We propose that this device can be utilized for evaluating voluntary motor control of the upper limb while minimizing the impact of robot inertia and friction forces on limb behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number9263368
Pages (from-to)1441-1449
Number of pages9
JournalIEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • User workspace
  • haptic robot
  • impedance
  • neurological disorder
  • upper limb

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


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