The US Army is looking for a potential manufacturer of a powered robotic exoskeleton capable of protecting the knees of warfighters.
Researchers explained that the exoskeleton is similar to an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) repair knee brace, except that it would be powered at the knee joint to provide kinetic assistance in the movement.
The army said that the wearable tech must enhance soldier performance and speed recovery from knee injuries.
The size of the device should also allow for the placement of inertial measurement units on the upper and lower leg.
Interested defense and technology firms have until May 13 to submit their proposals, including a short summary, internal and external test results, and the country of manufacture.
US Army scientists and engineers have been developing exoskeleton devices to prevent musculoskeletal injuries.
As part of its research and development, the service conducted a study using an adaptive exoskeleton boot capable of operating in synchrony with soldiers for optimal performance.
Researchers monitored study subjects’ brain signals, muscle signals, and movement profiles as they interacted with the exoskeleton.
In March, the army issued a request for information regarding development of similar wearable tech, saying that it was conducting a market survey to identify potential suppliers of such an exoskeleton.