Design and development of a fall arresting robot

A. Ertas, C. W. Malone, J. C. Jones, T. B. Leamon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite the large personal and economic losses associated with the effects of falling and slipping, the etiology of falling and slipping behaviour is unknown. A major inhibition of past research has been the lack of a facility to experimentally investigate such behavior without exposing human subjects to the natural danger of injury resulting from falls. To carry out this research, a facility was constructed to investigate falling and slipping behavior. One component of this facility, a fall arresting robot, is used to experimentally research the basic mechanics involved in falls. Specifically, this robot was designed to provide passive, reactive support of a test subject, so that a reduced friction walk surface could be used to induce a fall. This fall arresting robot (FAR) is composed of two subsystems. The mechanical components are combined to provide an overhead suspension system which can be made to track a predetermined path in anticipation of arresting an induced fall. The second subsystem is an automatic control system that provides passive tracking of the test subject's movement along the path. This paper describes the design and development of the fall arresting robot and how the components are combined to provide a functional fall arresting system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-186
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1991


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