EURA's team from the BioRobotics Institute pursues different areas of research.
A major focus in on the area of mechatronics and human-machine interfaces with the goal of developing advanced robotic limbs to be used as thought-controlled prostheses. Current research topics include: the (high-tech) observation of the human hand, the design of artificial sensory system; the design of artificial hands, digits, wrists and elbows, their transmission and artificial sensory system; the design of control architectures and intuitive control strategies; the use of biological signals for the physiological control of prehension; the development and clinical validation of bidirectional non-invasive (wearable) interfaces through novel assessment tools; the investigation and comparison of shared-control strategies between user and the prosthesis; the incorporation of sensory feedback strategies into one’s sensorimotor control.
Extensive research is also conducted to develop a new generation of assistive robot companions, underpinning technologies and bionic solutions to help citizens of all ages, from infants to elderly, and in different scenarios (in the factory, at home, in farms, or in marine scenarios), that are characterized by an extremely high efficiency, robust behaviour in unstructured environments, low cost and novel design for acceptability. The use of robotics as a method to increase the quality of scientific and technical education in school and the ethical, legal, social and economic issues are also investigated.
In the field of neuro-robotics, EURA's researcher design and develop advanced robotic devices interacting with human beings, such as robotic devices for applications in rehabilitation and daily-life assistance of people affected by movement disorders, and robotic models (physical platforms) for the investigation of neuroscience theories, exploiting results of the neuroscience investigation to design and develop robotic systems. In this area, the main research topics are those ofwearable assistive machines, artificial sense of touch, rehabilitation robotics and tele-rehabilitation.