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Publication numberUS2567066 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 4, 1951
Filing dateMay 15, 1948
Priority dateMay 15, 1948
Publication numberUS 2567066 A, US 2567066A, US-A-2567066, US2567066 A, US2567066A
InventorsGoldman Irving A
Original AssigneeGoldman Irving A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Robot controlled limb
US 2567066 A
Abstract  available in
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Sept. 4, 1951 l. A. GOLDMAN ROBOT coNTRoLLED LIMB 5 Sheets-Sheet l Filed May 15, 1948 IN VE NTOR nvm@ GrommAN Alf/MW Sept. 4, 1951 l. A. GOLDMAN ROBOT CONTROLLED LIMB 3 SheeiS-Shee 2 Filed May 15, 1948 IN/ENTOR Rv-LN@ GOLDMAN Sept' 4, 1951 l. A. GOLDMAN ROBOT CONTROLLED LIME 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed May l5, 1948 n .midi i e4 ls INVENTOR IRVING GOLDMAN BY .ym/

Patented Sept. 4, 1951 UNITED STATES PATENT -OFFICE ROBOT CONTROLLED LIMB Irving A. Goldman, Alexandria, Va.

Application May 15, 1948, Serial No. 27,272

7 Claims.

1 l This invention relates to artificial limbs and in particular to one of the robot controlled type.

An important object of the invention is to provide means for controlling the movement of the fingers of a hand so that the nnger joints thereof Vcan be operated at the will of the wearer of the artificial arm so that the hand may be used to move things about and may be used to pick up articles and grip the same for use, such as a lead pencil, a book or the like.

Another important object of my invention is the. provision of means in connection with ahand whereby the wearer can determine. whether the article picked up or touched is hot or cold and if so., to what degree.

Another important object of the invention is ,to provide means whereby the operation of the fingers may be controlled as gripping members from a switch carried in the mouth of the wearer of the artiiicial limb so that a difference in biting pressure may be used to control the different outer and inner joints of the hand, a sourcer of power `being also included in the nature of a storage battery or power pack. which may be carried varound by the individual and which may be charged by him when he is at home.

Still further objects of 'my invention include the use of detecing means' incorporated in the foot and leg structure of' an artificial ieg in which the unevenness of a surface walked upon may be sensed by the individual in the stump of the leg to which is secured the articial limb; to provide in such a leg, a mechanical means which will in- 'dicate to the wearer for instance, the edge of a step or curbstone so that he will be aware of a step or unevenness of the ground; and to provide a switch mechanism for the control of the various parts.

For further comprehension of the invention, and of' the objects and advantages thereof, reference will be had to the following description and accompanying drawings, and to the appended claims in which the various novel features of the invention are more particularly set forth.

In the accompanying drawings forming a material part of this disclosure-- Fig. 1 is a View in perspective showing a person equipped with an artificial arm and using the invention as applied to the hand thereof for holding an implement.

Fig. 2 is a plan view of a hand and the mechanism for operating the parts thereof, together with the electrical circuit involved, the same being shown in diagrammatic arrangement.

Fig. 3 is an enlarged side view of the hand portion of the articial limb, a part thereof being shown in section to illustrate the operating mechanism.

Fig. 4 is a view in section through a switch which is part of a control unit, a power pack being also shown.

Fig. 5 is a. side View of a hand in which is incorporated temperature detecing means.

Fig. 6 is an enlarged fragmentary section taken through one of the fingers of the hand illustrated in Fig. 5 showing the contact member used against the surface, of an object.

Fig. 7 is a view of the lower part of a body supported by an. artificial leg in which has been incorporated detecting means. y n

Fig. 8 is an enlarged view taken on the line 8-8 of Fig. 'l illustrating the relative position of the parts of the detecting mechanism.

Fig. 9 is an enlarged view, partly in section of the foot portion of the artificial limb having the ground engaging detecting means shown in connection therewith.

Fig. 10 is an enlarged view in cross section, through the upper portion of the limb, showing the means employed for imparting to the stump supported in. the articial leg, indication of an uneven surface upon which the foot rests.

Fig. 11 is a diagrammatic view of .ay modified form of the sensing mechanism that may be employed in connectionV with thev limb shown in Fig. 8.

Referring to the drawing in detail, the numeral I0 indicates the stump of an arm to which is attached, in the well known manner, an artificial arm Il terminating in a hand I2. The hand, as illustrated in Fig. 3, while of the usual construction found in artificial hands, may, in this particular instance, be articulated as at I3 in the iinger portions I4 thereof to provide for the pivotal movement of the outer, inner and intermediate joints i5, I6 and il, respectively. The nger portions I4 are of hollow construction and in their pintle portions I3 may present square shafts I 8 upon which are nXed the lever arms I9 in any suitable manner. The free ends of the arms are pivoted as at 28 to the cores 2l of solenoids 22 which operate against the tension of springs 23 to actuate the nger joints and position them as shown in outline in Fig. 3, so that any article may be gripped thereby and picked up.

For the purpose of illustration, I have employed only two sets of solenoids for the operation of the outer and intermediate finger joints but it is to be understood that other sets may be used to operate not only the inner joints of the nngers but the wrist and elbow joints if. so desired. Referring to Fig. 2, the solenoids 22 are arranged in rows and the upper row is connected through the medium of the wires 25 with a source of current 26 which in this instance may be a storage battery or a power pack 21 which may 3 be slung over the shoulder of the user of the articial arm through the medium of the strap 28. Wires 23 connectl an outer set of the solenoids 22 with the source of current and there is in terposed in the lines 25 and 29 a control unit 3l) (Fig. 4).

The control unit consists of a very minute housing 3l of cylindrical form in the opposite walls of which are imbedded the contacts 32 and 33, the housing being closed by a ring member 34 which imprisons a self-seating cylindrical contact switch 35 which is maintained against the ring 34 and in the upper part of the housing by a compression spring 36. -This switch unit 38 is placed in the mouth of the person using the same when the fingers are to be operated, and positioned between the teeth so that the switch 35 can be depressed to bridge the contacts 32 first and then the contacts 33 to close the circuit through the line 29.iirst and, when the member 35 moves farther into the housing, through the line 25. The shape of the device 25 is such that after the circuit through the` line 29 is closed and the Vswitch 35 is fully depressed it will maintain the circuit already made and will complete a new ycircuit through the line 25. This' actiontis necessary so that the fingers may be closed to pick up something, that is, the outer joints will be operated first'and then the inner joints.

The wires 25 and 29 may be molded in the `.housing 3l, as are the contacts, the wires being lead therefrom in a single cable casing 35H-, that is, connected to the power pack 2 in any suitable manner and from which said casing extends as at 3l to the artificial arm structule.

In Figs. and 6, I have illustrated a temperature sensitive device that may be `incorporated in the artificial hand structure either as a separate feature or in combination with the finger operating mechanism. This sensitive device consists of inserts or pads lll molded or otherwise formed in the inner surface of the finger joints and in which is molded a large number of metallic pins s! such as aluminum. These pins protrude very slightly beyond the surface of the pad 4S so that they may engage a surface touched by the hand and serve as heat or cold conductors. The pins 4i are connected through the medium of Wires 42 extending from each iingerpad 46 to a bimetal expansion and contact strip unit 53. The operation of a bimetal strip of this nature is well understood, it being suicient to note that the degree of heat affecting it will cause it to bow and Yoperate the pointer le to indicate, on the meter dial 45, opposite ranges of heat from a normal dial indication 55.

Referring to the` form of .the invention shown in Figs. 7 to ll, the stump of a leg 55 is shown mounted in the upper portion 5l of anrartiiicial limb structure 52 comprising a leg portion 54 and a foot 55, articulated and controlledrlby any means common in artificial leg, structures.

The purpose of the device is to give to the bottom surface of the stump a sensation in accordance with the roughness of the surface upon which the foot is resting so that it will be pos-` sible for instance, for the wearer to feel the edge of a curbing or other obstruction and to this end I provide a large number of Bowden wires 55 which consist of the usual casings 57 and inner wire 58. The bottom wall of the foot 55 is recessed as at 6l) to provide a pocket in which the heads 5| of the wires 58 may rest, the ends of the casings 5l being suitably connected in a holding plate 62 secured in any suitable manner to the bottom 63 of the foot 55.

When the foot is resting upon a iiat surface, all of the heads v6| of the Bowden wires will be flush with the hanged edge 59 that extends about the bottom of the foot portion 55, but when the foot rests upon an uneven surface (Fig. 9), the latter, indicated as at 64, Will depress the Wires 58 and will lift them at their opposite ends as at 65. Said opposite ends are disposed at a point in the leg structure immediately beneath the supporting sock 66 in which the stump 50 is supported in the leg part 5|. The ends of the wires 58 pass through a plate B1, are provided with heads 68 and are arranged to engage plates or strips 63 over which is stretched a rubber sheet 10 which is secured at its ends to the member 61, which in turn is mounted on a suite able bracket l for support within the leg portion 5| and constitutes a holding means 12 into which the upper ends of the Wire casings 5l are secured.

The sheet l0 will be stretched taut across the plates es and win yieldabiy hold the heads@ in their depressed position. When the foot rests on an uneven surface,v the Bowden wires vare pressed inwardly against the yielding action of the rubber sheet with the result that a section of the rubber sheet corresponding to, a section of the foot portion that engages the uneven sur-l face is raised up and is pushed against the bot-1 tom of the leg stump and thus the individual will get the `impression that the 4foot has stepped on something. As illustrated in Fig. ll,A the Bowden wire structure` 'l5 maybe separated and may have interposed between'the ends thereof an adjustable link 16, through the medium of .which the pushing action of the lower Bowden wire may be varied. y

It is evident therefore, that I have provided an articial limb structure which may be used to pick up articles, may be used to sense heat and cold and may be used to sense even `and uneven surfaces.

While I have illustrated and described the preferred embodiments of my invention, Vit is to be understood that I do not limit myself to the precise constructions herein disclosed and the right is reserved to lall changes and modifications com ing within the scope of the invention as defined in the appended claims.

Having thus described my invention, what I claim as new, and, desire to secure byUnited States Letters Patent is:

l. In an artificial hand having a plurality of tubular fingers, contact pads on the inner surf faces of each of the fingers, contact pins inthe pads for engaging a surface to be felt, wires lead-,- ing from said pins, a bimetal member to which the wires are joined to be influenced .by differ.- ences in temperature transferred from said con'- tacts through said Wires, and an indicator actuated by said bimetal member. 2. In an artificial hand having a plurality of tubular fingers, contact pads on the inner surfaces of each of the fingers, contact pins inthe pads for engaging a surface to be felt, wires leading from said pins, a bimetal member to which the Wires are joined to be influenced by differences lin temperature transferred from said contacts through said Wires, and an indicator actuated by .said bimetal member, said pads being flexible to conform closely to the contour of the surface engaged. ,3. In an artificial hand having a finger formed of a plurality of hollow end aligned nger portions with adjacent ends of the nger portions being slightly overlapped, pivot pins extended through the overlapped ends of the finger portions, each of said pivot pins being secured to one of the finger portions through which it is engaged and being rotatively extended through the other oi the finger portions, a solenoid having a core for each of said pivot pins xedly mounted in the finger portion through which the respective pivot pin is rotatively extended, levers each fixedly connected at one end to one of said pivot pins and at the other end to the core of the respective solenoid for turning the respective pivot pin to move the finger member when the solenoid is energized, spring means operating between each or" said cores and a fixed part of the respective finger members for urging said cores into extended positions, and electrically operated circuit means connected to said solenoids and controlled by a manually operable switch for energizing said solenoids when said switch is closed.

4. In an artificial hand having a finger formed of a plurality of hollow end aligned finger portions with adjacent ends of the finger portions being slightly overlapped, pivot pins extended through the overlapped ends of the finger portions, each of said pivot pins being secured to one of the finger portions through which it is engaged and being rotatively extended through the other of the finger portions, a solenoid having a core for each of said pivot pins fixedly mounted in the nger portion through which the respective pivot pin is rotatively extended, levers each xedly connected at one end to one of said pivot pins and at the other end to the core of the respective solenoid for turning the respective pivot pin to move the linger member when the solenoid is energized, spring means operating between each of said cores and a fixed part of the respective finger member for urging said cores into extended positions, and electrically operated circuit means connected to said solenoids and controlled by a manually operable switch for energizing said solenoids when said switch is closed, said switch means being operable to energize said solenoids one after the other.

5. In artificial hand having a finger formed of a plurality of hollow end aligned finger portions with adjacent ends of the finger portions being slightly overlapped, pivot pins extended through the overlapped ends of the nger portions, each of said pivot pins being secured to one of the nger portions through which it is engaged and being rotatively extended through the other of the iinger portions, a solenoid having a core for each of said pivot pins fixedly mounted in the finger portion through which the respective pivot pin is rotatively extended, levers each xedly connected at one end to one of said pivot pins and at the other end to the core of the respective solenoid for turning the respective pivot pin to move the nger member when the solenoid is energized, spring means operating between each of said cores and a xed part of the respective finger member for urging said cores into extended positions, and electrically operated circuit means connected to said solenoids and controlled by a manually operable switch for energizing said solenoids when said switch is closed, said switch comprising a hollow housing of insulation material, sets of contacts connected in series in said circuit mounted in diametrically opposite sides of the inner wall of said housing, a movable switch member slidably extended from said housing to be pushed inward for bridging said sets of contacts, and means retaining said switch member yieldably in an inoperative position extended from said housing.

6. In artificial hand having a finger formed of a plurality of hollow end aligned finger portions with adjacent ends of the finger portions being slightly overlapped, pivot pins extended through the overlapped ends of the finger portions, each of said pivot pins being secured to one of the nger portions through which it is engaged and being rotatively extended through the other of the nger portions, a solenoid having a core for each of said pivot pins xedly mounted in the finger portion through which the respective pivot pin is rotatively extended, levers each xedly connected at one end to one of said pivot pins and at the other end to the core of the respective solenoid for turning the respective pivot pin to move the finger member when the solenoid is energized, spring means operating between each of said cores and a xed part of the respective linger member for urging said cores into extended positions, and electrically operated circuit means connected to said solenoids and controlled by a manually operable switch for energizing said solenoids when said switch is closed, said switch being of a size to be positioned between the teeth of the wearer of the hand to be operated by opening and closing of the jaws.V

'7. In artificial hand having a iinger formed of a plurality of hollow end aligned finger portions with adjacent ends of the finger portions being slightly overlapped, pivot pins extended through the overlapped ends of the finger portions, each of said pivot pins being secured to one of the nger portions through which it is engaged and being rotatively extended through the other of the nger portions, a solenoid having a core for each of said pivot pins fixedly mounted in the iinger portion through which the respective pivot pin is rotatively extended, levers each xedly connected at one end to one of said pivot pins and at the other end to the core of the respective solenoid for turning the respective pivot pin to move the finger member when the solenoid is energized, spring means operating between each of said cores and a fixed part of the respective finger member for urging said cores into extended positions, and electrically operated circuit means connected to said solenoids and controlled by a manually operable switch for energizing said solenoids when said switch is closed, said switch being usable at a point on the body of thewearer of the hand remote from the hand, and cables connecting said switch with said solenoids and a source of power for said circuit.

IRVING A. GOLDMAN.

REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 2,301,009 Beeker Nov. 3, 1942 2,402,327 Harrington June 18, 1946 2,497,493 Edwards Feb. 14, 1950 FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date 301,108 Germany Oct. 9, 1917 311,455 Germany Mar. 17, 1919

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2656545 *Jan 10, 1952Oct 27, 1953Conzelman Jr John EProsthetic device sensory attachment
US2662228 *Apr 13, 1951Dec 15, 1953Modern Limb Supply Co IncOrthopedic and prosthetic appliance
US2669727 *Jul 24, 1951Feb 23, 1954Opuszenski TheodoreArtificial hand
US2842774 *May 26, 1955Jul 15, 1958Lionel CorpElectromechanical control systems
US3374762 *Jan 27, 1967Mar 26, 1968Alan W. BaldwinPressure indicator
US3509583 *Sep 9, 1965May 5, 1970Bendix CorpElectro-mechanical hand having tactile sensing means
US3751733 *Feb 22, 1972Aug 14, 1973Fletcher JTactile sensing means for prosthetic limbs
US4387472 *Oct 2, 1980Jun 14, 1983Medical Center Prosthetics, Inc.Torque absorber with biofeedback
US4980626 *Aug 10, 1989Dec 25, 1990The United States Of America As Represented By The Administrator Of The National Aeronautics And Space AdministrationMethod and apparatus for positioning a robotic end effector
US7168748 *Sep 26, 2003Jan 30, 2007Barrett Technology, Inc.Intelligent, self-contained robotic hand
US7511443Sep 30, 2005Mar 31, 2009Barrett Technology, Inc.Ultra-compact, high-performance motor controller and method of using same
US7854631Mar 30, 2009Dec 21, 2010Barrett Technology, Inc.Ultra-compact, high-performance motor controller
US7893644Mar 30, 2009Feb 22, 2011Barrett Technology, Inc.Ultra-compact, high-performance motor controller and method of using same
US8573663 *Apr 30, 2012Nov 5, 2013Precision Machinery Research & Development CenterFinger-gesticulation hand device
US8840160Jun 11, 2010Sep 23, 2014KinovaMechanical finger
US9572688Dec 12, 2006Feb 21, 2017Otto Bock Healthcare GmbhFinger and hand prosthesis
US20040103740 *Sep 26, 2003Jun 3, 2004Townsend William T.Intelligent, self-contained robotic hand
US20060071622 *Sep 30, 2005Apr 6, 2006Townsend William TUltra-compact, high-performance motor controller and method of using same
US20090018670 *Dec 12, 2006Jan 15, 2009Ottto Bock Healthcare Ip Gmbh & Co. KgFinger and hand prosthesis
US20090289584 *Mar 30, 2009Nov 26, 2009Barrett Technology, Inc.Ultra-compact, high-performance motor controller and method of using same
US20090295317 *Mar 30, 2009Dec 3, 2009Barrett Technology, Inc.Ultra-compact, high-performance motor controller and method of using same
WO2005117768A1 *Jun 3, 2005Dec 15, 2005Isabelle PrenatRemote tactile sensory perception system
WO2007076762A1 *Dec 12, 2006Jul 12, 2007Otto Bock Healthcare Ip Gmbh & Co. KgFinger prosthesis and hand prosthesis
WO2010142043A1 *Jun 11, 2010Dec 16, 2010KinovaMechanical finger
Classifications
U.S. Classification623/24, 310/272, 73/105, 623/53, 623/64, 116/221, 310/273, 374/205, 374/188
International ClassificationA61F2/60, A61F2/70, A61F2/58, A61F2/50
Cooperative ClassificationA61F2/60, A61F2/583, A61F2/586, A61F2002/587, A61F2002/704
European ClassificationA61F2/60, A61F2/58H