One of the disadvantages to most prosthetics is that they’re rather stiff in nature. For example while on the surface people with prosthetic legs look the same, when they walk it is usually a dead giveaway. However a company by the name of Vanderbilt has built a prosthetic leg that comes with a “smart” ankle that will allow it to adapt to uneven ground.

Basically it has been designed to move and function like an actual human leg/ankle. This means that those who wear it will not have problems with climbing up the stairs, a slope, or walking on uneven surfaces as the ankle will be able to move and adapt accordingly. According to the company’s mechanical engineering professor Michael Goldfarb, who helped create the smart prosthetic, he claims that the device “figures out what you’re doing and functions the way it should.”

The device was also tested by prostheses-wearer Mike Sasser who said, “I’ve tried hydraulic ankles that had no sort of microprocessors and they’ve been clunky, heavy and unforgiving for an active person. This isn’t that.” Unfortunately for now it seems that device is still in the early stages of development and still runs on wired power, meaning that it is clearly not designed to be taken outdoors just yet. However Goldfarb plans to introduce the device to the commercial market in the next few years.

Filed in Medical. Read more about Health and Wearable Tech.

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