Romansy 16 pp 321-328 | Cite as

Prosthesis Design by Robotic Approaches Part 1: Metabolical Cost

  • Werner Schiehlen
  • Marko Ackermann
Part of the CISM Courses and Lectures book series (CISM, volume 487)


The design of devices or therapies to improve gait quality of persons presenting gait disorders requires the definition of an appropriate optimizing criterion. Minetti and Alexander (1997) pointed out that humans are minimizing the metabolical cost which is different from the mechanical cost. While earlier work by Alexander (1992) was based on the minimization of the mechanical cost or work, respectively, in a more recent paper (Alexander, 2002) the metabolical cost is minimized. In particular, the improvement of the gait comfort of disabled persons will depend on the metabolical cost since the natural limit cycle does no longer fit to their skeletal bones involved in the locomotion. This paper reviews some fundamentals of metabolical cost, discusses the musculoskeletal dynamics arising from the use of Hill-type muscle models and presents a recently proposed phenomenological metabolic cost model by Umberger et al. (2003).


Joint Moment Contractile Element Pennation Angle Prosthesis Design Series Elastic Element 
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Copyright information

© CISM, Udine 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Werner Schiehlen
    • 1
  • Marko Ackermann
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Engineering and Computational MechanicsUniversity of StuttgartGermany

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