Prosthetic Foot

In India alone, there are about one million people with lower limb amputations. These people are using inadequate limbs that require significantly more effort to walk, exhibit unnatural walking motions, and are subject to social stigmas preventing them from employment and independent living. There is a gap between the high performance prosthetic feet in the United States that cost thousands of dollars and the affordable prostheses in the developing world that lack quality, durability, and performance.

GEAR Lab is working with Bhagwan Mahaveer Viklang Sahayata Samiti (BMVSS) to design an updated version of their Jaipur Foot, which is the most widely distributed prosthetic foot in the world. The original Jaipur Foot’s success was due to its lifelike look, flexibility, and extreme durability. We aim to create a new version of the foot that is much lighter, can be mass-manufactured, meets international testing standards, is compatible with other prosthetic equipment, and matches the durability of the current foot. We developed a novel metric called Lower Leg Trajectory Error (LLTE) that maps the mechanical design of a prosthetic foot to its biomechanical performance, meaning that we can optimize the compliance and geometry of a passive prosthesis to replicate able-bodied gait dynamics using affordable materials.

We used the LLTE to design a single part foot with a life-like cosmetic cover that can be mass produced in India. We are currently conducting clinical trials with the help of the BMVSS. Subjects will use our prototype feet for all their activities of daily living over a month-long period, and their feedback will be used to further refine our design. In the future, we will apply the LLTE to other ambulatory tasks such as running and ascending stairs, to create high performance, multi-purpose, low-cost prosthetic feet that can be mass produced in India and throughout the developing world.

Partners

Bhagwan Mahaveer Viklang Sahayata Samiti (BMVSS)

Northwestern University Prosthetics-Orthotics Center

VIBRAM

Sponsors

Tata Center for Technology and Design

DoD Orthotics and Prosthetics Outcomes Research Program (OPORP)

National Science Foundation

Publications

Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

A Novel Framework for Quantitatively Connecting the Mechanical Design of Passive Prosthetic Feet to Lower Leg Trajectory [🔗]
Olesnavage, K.M., & Winter, A., IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, DOI:10.1109/TNSRE.2018.2848845 (2018)

Design and Testing of a Prosthetic Foot with Interchangeable Custom Rotational Springs for Evaluating Lower Leg Trajectory Error, an Optimization Framework for Prosthetic Feet[🔗]
Prost, V., Olesnavage, K.M., Johnson, W.B., Major, M.J., & Winter, A., ASME Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics (2018)

Passive Prosthetic Foot Shape and Size Optimization Using Lower Leg Trajectory Error [🔗]
Olesnavage, K.M., Prost, V., Johnson, W.B., & Winter, A., ASME Journal of Mechanical Design. (2018)

Clinical Validation of Predicting Lower Leg Trajectory for Passive Prosthetic Feet Using Physiological Data as Inputs
Olesnavage, K.M., Prost, V., Johnson, W.B., Major, M.J., & Winter, A., IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering. (In Review)

Peer Reviewed Conference Articles

Design and Testing of a Prosthetic Foot Prototype with Interchangeable Custom Rotational Springs to Adjust Ankle Stiffness for Evaluating Lower Leg Trajectory Error, an Optimization Metric for Prosthetic Feet [🔗]
Prost, V., Olesnavage, K.M., & Winter, A., 41st Mechanisms and Robotics Conference ASME IDETC/CIE (2017)

Development of a Passive and Slope Adaptable Prosthetic Foot [🔗]
Amiot, D.E., Schmidt, R.M., Law, A., Meinig, E.P., Yu, L., Olesnavage, K.M., Prost, V., & Winter, A., 41st Mechanisms and Robotics Conference ASME IDETC/CIE (2017)

Passive Prosthetic Foot Shape and Size Optimization Using Lower Leg Trajectory Error[🔗]
Olesnavage, K.M., & Winter, A., 41st Mechanisms and Robotics Conference ASME IDETC/CIE (2017)

Design and Preliminary Testing of a Prototype for Evaluating Lower Leg Trajectory Error as an Optimization Metric for Prosthetic Feet [🔗 ]
Olesnavage, K., & Winter, A., 40th Mechanisms and Robotics Conference ASME IDETC/CIE (2016)

Lower Leg Trajectory Error: A Novel Optimization Parameter for Designing Passive Prosthetic Feet [⇩]
Olesnavage, K., & Winter, A., 14th International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics, IEEE/RAS-EMBS ICORR (2015)

Design and Qualitative Testing of a Prosthetic Foot with Rotational Ankle and Metatarsal Joints to Mimic Physiological Roll-Over Shape [⇩]
Olesnavage, K., & Winter, A., 39th Mechanisms and Robotics Conference ASME IDETC/CIE (2015)

Analysis of Rollover Shape and Energy Storage and Return in Cantilever Beam-Type Prosthetic Feet [⇩]
Olesnavage, K., & Winter, A., 38th Mechanisms and Robotics Conference ASME IDETC/CIE (2014)

Theses

Development and validation of a novel framework for designing and optimizing passive prosthetic feet using lower leg trajectory [🔗 ]
Olesnavage, K.M., PhD's Thesis (MIT, 2017)

Experimental validation of the Lower Leg Trajectory Error, an optimization metric for prosthetic feet [🔗 ]
Prost, V., Master's Thesis (MIT, 2017)

Design and Evaluation of a Cantilever Beam – Type Prosthetic Foot for Indian Persons with Amputations [🔗 ]
Olesnavage, K., Master's Thesis (MIT, 2015)

Press Articles

Kathryn Olesnavage under the Spolight, on TataCenter News (2017) [🔗 ]

Kathryn Olesnavage Graduate Winner of the Lemelson-MIT Student Prize "Cure it!" (2017) [🔗 ]

MIT Meche News (2015) [🔗 ]