Award Gallery

Dynamic Prosthetic Socket System

Award: Notable Technology Development

Year: 2015

Award Type:

Region: Mid-Continent

Laboratory:
Sandia National Laboratories (SNL)

Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories have been using robotics to design advanced prosthetics for years.

However, Jason Wheeler soon realized that no matter how great the technology; amputees will not wear it if it is not comfortable. The discomfort comes from the fit since a limb’s shape continually changes due to bodily fluid fluctuations.

In answer, Wheeler and his team are working on a Dynamic Prosthetic Socket System. The system is continuously updated by including integrated sensors and bladders that will monitor fit, detect changes, and then automatically adjust the shape.

The discomfort comes from the fit since a limb’s shape continually changes due to bodily fluid fluctuations.

Another application is in shoes for diabetics to keep feet healthy. Diabetes is the leading cause of limb loss, accounting for more than 65,000 amputations a year. Nearly two million people in the United States live with limb loss.