Hilti and Ottobock developing exoskeletons
Hilti plans to bring exoskeleton solutions to the construction industry. They will improve the health and productivity of workers. The tool manufacturer from Schaan has joined forces with German medical technology company Ottobock to develop exoskeletal systems.
“Exoskeletons are an important trend having great relevance for us,” explains Johannes Wilfried Huber, Head of Hilti’s Diamond Systems Business Unit, in a press release from the tool manufacturer based in Schaan. “They provide relief for physically demanding tasks, such as those performed on construction sites every day.” This can make a significant contribution to health protection and also improve productivity. Hilti therefore intends to launch on the market exoskeletal systems specifically designed for construction work.
The tool manufacturer has joined forces with German medical technology company Ottobock SE & Co. KGaA to develop these exoskeletal systems. Ottobock is “delighted to be opening up a new area of application together with Hilti,” says the Head of Ottobock Industrials, Sönke Rössing. He adds that the company is “building on our experience gained from more than 500 successful exoskeleton projects, including in the automotive industry and various trades”.
The partners plan to launch the first joint product, the EXO-O1, as soon as autumn 2020. This passive model does not require an energy supply and is specially designed to relieve the load placed on shoulder muscles in overhead work. The weight of the arms is transferred to the hips via the forearm supports using mechanical cable pulling technology.