Development of Energy-Storage Ankle-Foot Orthosis Using 3d Printing Technology
Abnormal gait has been an issue for post-stroke patients and several types of ankle-foot orthosis have been
developed. However, only a few non-active ones focused on energy-storage function and actually presented the enhanced
performance. Therefore, this study intends to design a new energy-storage ankle-foot orthosis to improve the gait
performances of post-stroke patients. A prototype consisting of the foot sole, joint structure and calf support was designed and
built to provide limited plantarflexion and unrestrained dorsiflexion of ankle joint as well as energy-storage function. An actual
model was test-printed by using 3D printer and comfortably fitted to the subject. Moreover, finite element analysis was
performedon the joint structure to prove the safety and feasibility of our design concepts. Future studies will be conducted to
investigate the mechanical strength and fatigue endurance as well as whether improvements regarding gait patterns and energy
generation can be made on patients wearing the ankle-foot orthosis.
Index Terms- Ankle-foot orthosis, Energy-storage,3D printing, Stroke, Gait.