What used to be pure fiction and video game ideas now have the potential to be seen in everyday factories and warehouses, what I am talking about is Exosuits. Exosuits are classified into two categories, passive and active. Passive Exosuits are non-powered Exosuits that are designed to help users with the ability to lift heavy objects, nullifying the risk of causing injury. Passive Exosuits have a lightweight, comfortable design, consisting of carbon fiber rods and conformable fabrics for strong support whilst still ensuring natural, fluid movement.
Active Exosuits, on the other hand, are comprised of a powered frame with multiple actuators and sensors to provide full assistance to its user. This allows workers to perform their normal tasks with ease, active Exosuits use the frame surrounding the user to take all the weight of any heavy objects giving the user robotic strength far greater than an average laborer. These are not the only two exoskeleton categories around, however, they do describe the two basic differences in Exosuits and provide a basis of dividing up all Exosuits.
I am going to be talking about passive exoskeletons and their use in the workforce. This type of Exosuits is far cheaper than its counterpart, as there are no powered mechanisms making it far cheaper from the get-go. Over a year period, it is an estimated $13.8 billion is lost as a result of an injury in the workplace, Back pain is the leading injury suffered by workers.
Using passive Exosuits will not only decrease the frequency of injury in the workplace, but it will also increase productivity as workers will not get tired, it will increase efficiency as workers can carry heavier loads at a time. It is only now after several extensive years of research that we can successfully implement Exosuits into the workplace as a cost-effective, sustainable method to increase efficiency. Companies such as Lowes have already begun trials with passive Exosuits, testing 4 on their workers. So far there has been nothing but positive feedback about the suits.