Economy

New Exoskeleton Does the Heavy Lifting for Factory Workers

New Exoskeleton Does the Heavy Lifting for Factory Workers”

They call it the EksoVest, and it's an upper-body exoskeletal technology created to help support workers while they perform overhead tasks. While this might not seem like a huge amount, Ford claims that certain employees do as many as 4,600 tasks a day, so you can imagine that it all adds up, and having the suit there to help will certainly make things easier as well as reduce chances of injury. BMW experienced similar results, including less fatigue and a lower rate of injury. It's lightweight, not too cumbersome, and can accommodate workers from 5 feet to 6 feet, 4 inches in stature. SuitX, a Berkeley, California-based startup, designed a workplace exoskeleton that redirects loads and provides lift assistance for construction workers and timber cutters.

"My job entails working over my head, so when I get home my back, neck and shoulders usually hurt", says an assembly line worker at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant, Paul Collins. "Since I started using the vest, I'm not as sore".

According to UAW-Ford Vice President Jimmy Settles, "The health and safety of our membership has always been our highest priority". Ford is piloting the project in two US plants, and since they started using the vest, workers have claimed that they are not as sore and that they have more energy when they get home from the job.

Ford recently expanded the use of Microsoft's HoloLens but designers aren't the only ones benefiting from advances in technology.

The auto giant has developed a futuristic exoskeleton that aims to combat fatigue and injury caused by performing repetitive movements.



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