On 8th October 2016, the world’s first Cybathlon will take place at the Swiss Arena, Kloten (Zurich), Switzerland. Thought up by Professor Robert Riener at ETH Zürich and NCCR Robotics, the Cybathlon aims to bring together researchers, industry and end users of robotic technologies for the disabled to work together to produce assistive aids that can move out of the lab and into daily life. Teams consist of a contestant with disabilities and a technology provider from academia or industry. These groups are encouraged to work together over the period preceding the Cybathlon to create a solution that will allow the competitor to navigate a series of everyday tasks.
Six races will take place at the Cybathlon:
• Brain Computer Interface (BCI); participants will use a BCI to control an avatar in a game.
• Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) bike; cyclists will compete in a pursuit race using only FES.
• Arm prosthetics; those with upper limb amputations will use actuated prostheses to complete a number of tasks, such as preparing breakfast and opening a door.
• Leg prosthetics; those with lower limb amputations will use actuated prostheses to navigate a course including uneven ground and steps.
• Powered wheelchair: participants will navigate over a series of normal obstacles such as steps and uneven ground
• Exoskeleton: competitors will negotiate a series of tasks such as standing up from a sofa and walking on a tilted path.
With each racecourse specifically designed to test the ability of the robotic aid being used to function in situations that happen every day, the organisers hope that the Cybathlon can facilitate a new kind of technology that can further improve the independence of those with disabilities Please find out more at www.cybathlon.com or on Twitter (@cybathlon) or facebook (www.facebook.com/cybathlon)