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Article

Structural FEA-Based Design and Functionality Verification Methodology of Energy-Storing-and-Releasing Prosthetic Feet

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Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Bologna, 40131 Bologna, Italy
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Interdepartmental Centre for Industrial Research in Advanced Mechanical Engineering Applications and Materials Technology, University of Bologna, 40131 Bologna, Italy
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Bernoulli Institute for Mathematics, Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence, Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Groningen, 9747 AG Groningen, The Netherlands
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Research and Development, Össur, 110 Reykjavík, Iceland
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Zimi Sawacha
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(1), 97; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12010097
Received: 19 November 2021 / Revised: 13 December 2021 / Accepted: 15 December 2021 / Published: 23 December 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Biomedical Engineering)
The prosthetic feet that are most often prescribed to individuals with K3/K4 levels of ambulation are the ESR feet. ESR stands for energy-storing and -releasing. The elastic energy is stored by the elastic elements in composite materials (carbon fiber or glass fiber). ESR feet must be developed and optimized in terms of stiffness, taking into account the loads that a healthy human foot undergoes and its kinematics while walking. So far, state-of-the-art analyses show that the literature approaches for prosthetic foot design are not based on a systematic methodology. With the aim of optimizing the stiffness of ESR feet following a methodological procedure, a methodology based on finite element structural analysis, standard static testing (ISO 10328) and functional verification was optimized and it is presented in this paper. During the path of optimization of the foot prototypes, this methodology was validated experimentally. It includes the following: (i) geometry optimization through two-dimensional finite element analysis; (ii) material properties optimization through three-dimensional finite element analysis; (iii) validation test on physical prototypes; (iv) functionality verification through dynamic finite element analysis. The design and functional verification of MyFlex-γ, a three-blade ESR foot prosthesis, is presented to describe the methodology and demonstrate its usability. View Full-Text
Keywords: finite element analysis (FEA); prosthetic feet; stiffness optimization; biomechanics finite element analysis (FEA); prosthetic feet; stiffness optimization; biomechanics
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MDPI and ACS Style

Tabucol, J.; Brugo, T.M.; Povolo, M.; Leopaldi, M.; Oddsson, M.; Carloni, R.; Zucchelli, A. Structural FEA-Based Design and Functionality Verification Methodology of Energy-Storing-and-Releasing Prosthetic Feet. Appl. Sci. 2022, 12, 97. https://doi.org/10.3390/app12010097

AMA Style

Tabucol J, Brugo TM, Povolo M, Leopaldi M, Oddsson M, Carloni R, Zucchelli A. Structural FEA-Based Design and Functionality Verification Methodology of Energy-Storing-and-Releasing Prosthetic Feet. Applied Sciences. 2022; 12(1):97. https://doi.org/10.3390/app12010097

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tabucol, Johnnidel, Tommaso M. Brugo, Marco Povolo, Marco Leopaldi, Magnus Oddsson, Raffaella Carloni, and Andrea Zucchelli. 2022. "Structural FEA-Based Design and Functionality Verification Methodology of Energy-Storing-and-Releasing Prosthetic Feet" Applied Sciences 12, no. 1: 97. https://doi.org/10.3390/app12010097

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