Project Title: Alpha-Foot |A Trans-Tibial Prosthesis for use in developing countries
The product will weigh just less than 1.75Kg
The objective of the Alpha-Foot project has been to design a low-cost, below-the-knee prosthetic leg for use in developing or war-torn countries where a large proportion of amputees are not able to afford or otherwise have access to proper prosthetic devices.
The main motivation for the project came from reading about the ongoing use of landmines in some of the poorest nations of the world and how the negative impact of these devices has left a lasting impression on the landscape and devastated local communities.
The Alpha-Foot aims to re-empower these people by literally enabling them to stand on their own two feet! This means that they can finally return to work and once again provide for their families, without the burden of large medical costs or having to hobble about with cumbersome makeshift crutches.
The product itself is an ambidextrous design which can be adapted to suit a wide variation of below-knee amputations. The foot is comprised of two sets of aluminium ‘blades’ which represent the functions of the toes and fore-foot/the heel and ankle. The blades act as a spring-lever which deform under a normal walking stride, propelling the user forwards by adding to their forward momentum. The product has a total weight of 1.75Kg, a cost of £45, and is designed to give an additional energy return of up to 50% efficiency.
As a final note, I would just like to say that the last four years at Bournemouth University have been a really enjoyable, interesting and worthwhile learning experience. I feel that the skills that I have acquired will come to benefit me in years to come and I plan to use this knowledge as a solid foundation to reach my goals in the future.