On 28th April 2020, the ESO-EAWS scientific research project was concluded; it was born from the collaboration of the Fondazione Ergo with the Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna, the Laboratory for Engineering of Neuromuscular System (LISiN) of the Polytechnic of Turin and promoted by IUVO – spin-off company of the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies and part of the Comau group, global leader in robotics and industrial automation.
The first aim of the project was to face one of the greatest open challenges in the field of industrial exoskeletons: to understand and quantify how the use of exoskeletal systems can effectively reduce the biomechanical load for workers, assisting them in their postures and movements.
Besides, the focus was on the impact on the biomechanical load calculation model of the EAWS system (Ergonomic Assessment Work-Sheet – a tool for assessing the overall risk of biomechanical overload), generated by the use of the passive exoskeleton MATE (Muscular Aiding Tech Exoskeleton).
The main results of ESO-EAWS project are the ESO-EAWS 1.3.6 Form and the “Addendum” to the user manual of the EAWS system, entitled “Exoskeletons impacts on EAWS evaluation”: the ESO-EAWS version allows to calculate the reduction of the ergonomic evaluation score of manual work activities achievable thanks to the use of a passive exoskeleton certified by Fondazione Ergo.
In this first project, it has been defined the evaluation procedure of passive exoskeletons for the upper limbs support, defining the exoskeletons class S-01 (“S” is for “Shoulder”), basing on specific requirements.
On the Addendum of EAWS User Manual, the calculation rules to be applied in case of use of S-01 exoskeleton are defined.