Our research interest focuses on human movement, which is an important aspect of human life because it ensures physical mobility and thus interaction with the environment. Against this background, the goal of our research is to understand the functioning of human movements, i.e. the interaction of the nervous system and the musculoskeletal system, which enables coordinated movement behavior. To be able to study human movements, the BioMotion Center has a biomechanics lab and a robotics lab where most of our team's research takes place.
Our biomechanics lab enables a comprehensive study of human movement on a neurophysiological and mechanical level from different scientific perspectives (e.g. motor control, sports or clinical biomechanics, training science…) and is equipped with modern and in-house development measurement tools (see lab equipment). Our team members are engaged in a wide range of research projects on the analysis of whole-body movements (e.g. walking, running, stair walking and dynamic balance tasks) as well as human-technology interaction (e.g. lower limb orthoses and exoskeletons).
Our robotic interfaces (KINARM End-Point Lab and BioMotionBot) enable the study of human arm control and the adaptation of arm movements to changing kinematic and dynamic constraints. This means for instance, that our robots can create physical objects with novel dynamic properties and change these object properties in real time. In addition, the robotic interfaces have high-precision sensors that provide force, position, and velocity data for our analyses. Moreover, both robots have open programming interfaces, which enable us to create different movement tasks using e.g. Simulink programs. For more comprehensive analyses, biomechanical (e.g. motion capture) and neurophysiological measuring tools (e.g. EMG or EEG) can be connected to our robotic interfaces, allowing time-synchronous data acquisition.
Measuring tools: 10 Vicon Vantage V8 cameras, 6 Vicon Vero v2.2 cameras, 2 Vicon Vue cameras, 2 Vicon Lock Lab with A/D converter (each 64 channels), 4 force plates (AMTI & in-house development), instrumented stairs (in-house development), novel emed pressure distribution plate, novel pedar pressure distribution insole, novel pliance pressure distribution on surfaces & IsoMed 2000 (D. & R. Ferstl GmbH)
Modeling tools: alaska/Dynamicus, OpenSim & Vicon Plug-In Gait
Noraxon Ultium wireless EMG system (16 channels), Noraxon Telemyo 2400TG2 EMG system (16 channels) & Brain Products EEG system (16 channels)
BIOSWING Posturomed (with in-house developed perturbation module), Lafayette Instrument 16030 stability platform (with in-house developed online feedback system), forward-fall simulation tool (in-house development) & brake-and-release tool to induce perturbations during walking (in-house development)