Portable Take-Home System Enables Proportional Control and High-Resolution Data Logging With a Multi-Degree-of-Freedom Bionic Arm

Mark R. Brinton, The University of Utah
Elliott Barcikowski
Tyler Davis, The University of Utah
Michael Paskett, The University of Utah
Jacob A. George, The University of Utah
Gregory A. Clark, The University of Utah


This paper describes a portable, prosthetic control system and the first at-home use of a multi-degree-of-freedom, proportionally controlled bionic arm. The system uses a modified Kalman filter to provide 6 degree-of-freedom, real-time, proportional control. We describe (a) how the system trains motor control algorithms for use with an advanced bionic arm, and (b) the system's ability to record an unprecedented and comprehensive dataset of EMG, hand positions and force sensor values. Intact participants and a transradial amputee used the system to perform activities-of-daily-living, including bi-manual tasks, in the lab and at home. This technology enables at-home dexterous bionic arm use, and provides a high-temporal resolution description of daily use—essential information to determine clinical relevance and improve future research for advanced bionic arms.