We plan to do further analysis of the sensor data and relevant metrics collected as continuation of WK80655. This will allow us to compare relative exposure levels for shoulder/low-back and leg injuries across the various tasks simulated. Analysis will focus on computing metrics such as load moments on the spine and shoulder, percentage of total work times in poor posture etc. For example, a prolonged shoulder flexion at angles greater than 90 degree will lead to higher risk for shoulder injuries. The analysis will focus on listing/ranking of jobs across these metrics and translating those metrics into risk levels for the specific body parts. This ranking will be used to develop Exoskeleton recommendations about job classifications.
Milestone: We will be able to classify physical jobs based on measured sensor data and develop standard recommendations for matching the type of exoskeleton to a particular physical job. Overall, this will create a scientific basis for standardized recommendations on: 1) the type of physical tasks that should be monitored with exoskeletons and 2) the selection of the most appropriate exoskeleton for a specific task.
Return to work; physical demands; job matching; job analysis; job hazard analysis
Employers have access to several different types of exoskeletons on the market, namely (a) back assist, (b) shoulder and arm assist, (c) tool holding/support, and (d) leg assist, each designed to augment a specific part of the body14. Employers face two main challenges; first determining which employees would benefit the most from using an exoskeleton and second the selection of the appropriate type of exoskeleton for a specific job. Other stake holders such as physicians want to ensure that workers are not re-injuring themselves as they return to work. This standard work item will help address these needs.
The title and scope are in draft form and are under development within this