The Swiss exoskeleton manufacturer, Auxivo AG, unveiled today the DeltaSuit, a backpack-like wearable device for anyone who needs to perform continuous work at or above shoulder level. The DeltaSuit is a passive shoulder-support exoskeleton that utilizes a new approach to reduce loads on the shoulder and neck muscles while simultaneously reducing fatigue.
The DeltaSuit uniquely differs from the twenty or so shoulder support exoskeletons (link to catalog) that are known to the public. Its patent-pending design includes multiple features that aim to maximize usability in manufacturing, construction, logistics, and agriculture. For starters, the DeltaSuit does not have a belt around the waist nor supporting rods or beams connecting it. This is designed to make for an exoskeleton that is easier to wear with fewer restrictions to normal body movement. This, and many additional innovations, result in a novel solution that combines rigid and soft elements.
Additional innovations include a split vest upper body interface, integrated elastic energy storage elements, aerospace-grade aluminum alloys, and dynamic misalignment compensation. In yet another quality-of-life improvement, the DeltaSuit will not push the user’s arms upwards when they are lowered.
“We are thrilled to launch the DeltaSuit, our latest innovation in the exoskeleton market,” said Volker Bartenbach, CEO of Auxivo AG. “The DeltaSuit will provide workers with the support they need to perform their jobs with less strain and fatigue. At Auxivo, we are committed to developing innovative solutions that enhance worker safety and well-being, and we take pride in adding the DeltaSuit to our portfolio and providing our customers with the best possible solutions.”
Size & Customization:
The DeltaSuit will come in two sizes: S/M and L/XL. The design calls for a suit with fewer straps and adjustments compared to what has been previously available on the market. This wearable device is meant to be more similar to a backpack, both in its ease of use and freedom of movement. An additional targeted benefit is a smaller footprint, making it easier to use the exoskeleton in tight spaces.
The level and angle of maximum support should be adjustable without tools using a built-in switch. Unlike some other devices on the market that can have a combination of adjustable settings, the DeltaSuit will have only two. Low and high support (5.2 Nm and 6.6 Nm peak torque), with the goal of being an easier and more intuitive-to-use product.
Price & Availability:
The DeltaSuit was first shown today at the Hannover fair in Germany. The Auxivo team will also bring it with them to Logimat in Stuttgart on April 25-27. After the fairs, the DeltaSuit will become available for purchase in Europe. This new wearable device will become globally accessible to purchase through Auxivo AG’s international network of authorized distributors at a later time.
The DeltaSuit has a list price of €2290 (~ $2,500) per unit. The total cost of ownership (site integration, storage, maintenance, etc. will likely vary from location to location).
Since there are still no widely accepted validation or certification standards, each exoskeleton manufacturer has to choose how to test their products. The DeltaSuit has been evaluated in Auxivo’s laboratory and in collaboration with leading partners. Results will be made available to customers, and the company and its academic partners plan to publish the evaluation results in a peer-reviewed scientific journal later this year.
“We believe that rigorous scientific and field evaluations are critical to the development of reliable and effective exoskeletons,” said Dr. Rachel van Sluijs, Senior Scientists at Auxivo AG. “We are committed to providing our customers with products that have been thoroughly tested and evaluated to ensure their safety and performance. By publishing the methods and results in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, we further demonstrate the efficacy of our products and contribute to the broader exoskeleton community by supporting the establishment of standards.”
How we got here?
Auxivo AG was founded in 2019 as a spin-off of ETH Zurich. The company’s CEO, Volker Bartenbach, first landed on Exoskeleton Report’s radar in 2017, when Volker won the WearRAcon 17 Innovation Challenge with his entry for the EduExo STEM Education kit (Wearable Robotics Association Innovation Challenge 2017). The EduExo STEM powered elbow exoskeleton was introduced initially as a successfully funded crowdfunding project on Kickstarter.com (see: Introducing EduExo). Auxivo launched the more powerful version, EduExo Pro, four years later (http://Start-Up Auxivo AG Launches Educational Robotic Exoskeleton Kit on Kickstarter) again initially as a Kickstarter and later as a full product.
DeltaSuit joins its sister products, the CarrySuit and LiftSuit. You can find out more about all of Auxivo’s products on their website: https://www.auxivo.com.
The DeltaSuit is meant to address some of the challenges contributing to the gradual adoption of shoulder-support exoskeletons: complexity, ease of use, comfort, price, weight, device footprint, and movement restriction. The Auxivo team has taken risks to create something that could be a valuable addition to the exoskeleton market.
The Auxivo® and DeltaSuit® are registered trademarks owned by Auxivo AG. All images provided courtesy of Auxivo AG. The original press release can be found on the company’s website.