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Vol. 135, Issue 12, December 2011, pp.57-69

 

Bullet

 

Proposal for a Mini Wireless Force Platform for Human Gait Analysis
 

Giovani PIFFER and Alexandre BALBINOT

Instrumentation Laboratory (IEE)

Electrical Engineering Department (DELET)

Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS)

Av Osvaldo Aranha, 103, Porto Alegre, 90035-190, Brazil

Tel.: +550215133084440

E-mail: giovanipiffer@ibest.com.br, alexandre.balbinot@ufrgs.br

 

 

Received: 29 September 2011   /Accepted: 16 December 2011   /Published: 28 December 2011

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Abstract: This paper aims to develop a mini wireless force platform placed in the shoe sole for analysis of human gait. The platform consists of a machined aluminum mechanical structure fixed into a sole, whose sensors are electrical resistance strain gages strategically cemented at the points of greatest deformation of the structure. The strain gages are configured as a Wheatstone bridge connected to an amplifier for output signals and filtered by a signal conditioner. The signals are conditioned using a data acquisition board in conjunction with a graphical interface developed in LabVIEW. The static and dynamic behavior of the eight load cells was evaluated. Calibration at static pressures has shown that the eight load cells are linear within the usage range from 0 kgf to 45 kgf. The dynamic response has determined that the first vibration mode is around 1 kHz, indicating that the load cells have no resonance during the test. Three subjects carried out gait tests to examine the range of force platform use, and these tests demonstrated that the signals obtained are consistent with the classical references in this area.

 

Keywords: Load Cell, Strain-gage, Human Gait, Biomechanics, ZigBee

 

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