Socially Responsible Design Projects In An Undergraduate Engineering Education Program
2008 Annual Conference & Exposition Proceedings
This work describes several design projects in an undergraduate engineering program which are directed to benefit an individual or a community. Examples of such projects are: 1) Feeding Device for people with disabilities. 2) "Fun" to operate water pump to be used in developing countries. 3) Exercise bicycle machine for people with Down syndrome. 4. Tooth Paste dispenser machine. 4) Design and analysis of an artificial Prosthetic leg. In this paper, however, only the design of artificial
... f artificial Prosthetic leg and its development is described in detail. The rest of the projects mentioned above are in development stage and they will be presented during presentation of the paper. Thousands of people world-wide currently require artificial leg prostheses. The basic design of a prosthetic leg consists of an axial structural member, a foot component, and a cosmetic cover. In the past two decades, prosthetic limb design has advanced significantly, with an emphasis on a very active lifestyle that includes sport activity as being one of the normal ones. As a result prosthetic technology has needed to improve to minimize subsequent injuries of the spine and other joints. The foot is required to simulate the shock generation and absorption properties of intact foot, store the energy from the early part of the stride and release it again at the point of take-off. Because of this, the requirement of the foot design is different and can be mathematically quite complex based on the chosen geometry, material and required performance. A wide range of different mechanical designs have been developed by number of companies and suppliers and there is significant room left for more investigation by the researchers. This paper is primarily an undergraduate research level paper and its primary goal is to design and investigate improving such mathematically complex problem of artificial leg using the state of the art solid modeling and analysis technology available to students in an undergraduate education. The intent of the paper is to open the way to other undergraduate students to get involved in research early in their education and be able to choose their future career path more readily. A short introduction is gathered from the available literature about the mechanism and kinematics of human leg. A few designs similar to the ones already in existence is studied and investigated and a few more new designs are introduced and investigated using the most up-todate software packages in solid modeling and Finite Element Method.