Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - UPC

New orthotic glove designed to amplify hand strength An actuated hand exoskeleton useful for old or disabled people who have not enough strength in their hands has been patented and developed. This new technology allows amplification of hand-grasping forc

Posted by Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - UPCResponsive · Patents for licensing · Spain

Summary of the technology

The Challenge Partial hand disability represents a serious problem for many people, who although they have mobility and sensitivity in their hands, are not strong enough to hold a simple mug. For example, people with diseases, elderly or people who have suffered a traffic accident. In order to improve their quality of life, the design of devices such as the exoskeleton presented is so important. Currently, there are some similar devices nevertheless most of them need external energy and sophisticated drive mechanisms, complicating their use and maintenance.

Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - UPC
Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - UPC

The Challenge


Partial hand disability represents a serious problem for many people, who although they have mobility and sensitivity in their hands, are not strong enough to hold a simple mug.
For example, people with diseases, elderly or people who have suffered a traffic accident. In order to improve their quality of life, the design of devices such as the exoskeleton presented is so important. Currently, there are some similar devices nevertheless most of them need external energy and sophisticated drive mechanisms, complicating their use and maintenance.

The Technology

The innovative nature of this actuated hand exoskeleton is that it is designed in such a way that does not require any external energy for its operation, as it works only by the movement of the person’s wrist. This new device is useful for people that have mobility and sensitivity in their fingertips and consists of an exoskeleton that creates an external structure which is able to support the strength that is needed to hold an object.
The exoskeleton consists of a glove base with a rocker, support, and beams. This system, with a single movement of the wrist, creates a kinematic movement of fingers that permits the person to grasp any object. An aesthetic glove covers the exoskeleton.

Current stage of development


Prototype available ready for testing on patients.

Applications and Target Market


This technology could be of interest for companies devoted to manufacturing orthopedic devices.

Innovative advantages


· Amplification of grasping force.

· Any external power (neither batteries nor electromyography) is required for its operation, as it operates with minimal movement of the wrist.

· Easy to manufacture and cost competitive as you can implement it without any complex mechanical components .

· The patient’s quality of life is highly improved, as they are able to manage their daily activities easily.

Intellectual property status

Granted Patent
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Technology available for licensing with technical cooperation Patent Status PCT application

Technology Owner

Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - UPC

Technology Transfer Office

Related keywords

  • Social and Economics concerns
  • Socio-economic development models, economic aspects
  • Medical Technology / Biomedical Engineering
  • Medical/health
  • Medical instruments
  • Medical Physics, Physiology

About Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - UPC

Technology Transfer Office from Spain

The Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - BarcelonaTech is a public institution dedicated to higher education and research in the fields of engineering, architecture and science, which contributes its knowledge and expertise in order to increase scientific output, transfer its results to society and provide a network of scientific and technical state-of-the-art facilities and technology valorization services that place us at the leading edge of innovation and economic development.

The UPC has established itself as a driver of innovation and is the technology partner of choice for companies and organizations with which it develops projects and builds partnerships. A role borne out by the numerous agreements and research projects that have been set in motion by groups, organizations and laboratories; the creation of new technology-based companies; the generation and exploitation of patents, and the scientific and technical services UPC makes available to its environment in order to generate progress and employment.

The Technology Transfer Office (SGI) is responsible of Designing, coordinating and implementing research valorisation strategies, carrying out the protection policy of the research results, marketing these results through license contracts and designing and setting up the University's enterprise creation model in order to transfer the results of the research to the market, protect and commercialize these results, promote the culture of entrepreneurship and innovation, and create technology-based companies within the UPC environment.

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