This paper describes the mechanical design and control approach for an above-knee (AK) prosthesis actuated by pneumatic artificial muscle. Pneumatic artificial muscle (PAM) affords great potential in prosthetics, since this type of actuator features a high power density, and similar characteristics to human muscles. However, there is no application of PAM in AK prosthetics in existing literature to the best knowledge of the authors. In this paper, a design of the prosthesis is presented, which provides sufficient actuation torque for the knee joint in energy consuming locomotive functions such as fast walking and stair climbing. The corresponding control approach is also presented, which combines an impedance-based locomotive controller with a lower-level sliding-mode torque control approach. Experiments on the proposed AK prosthesis have also been conducted to demonstrate the ability to mimic normal gait characteristics.

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