A dynamic knee simulator has been developed to allow in-vitro investigation of the mechanical response of the joint corresponding to dynamic functional activities, e.g., walking. In the simulator, the controlled inputs are the time-histories of three parameters of a given dynamic activity: the flexion angle, and the flexion/extension moment and tibial axial force components of the foot-to-floor reaction. A combination of stepping motors and electro-hydraulic actuators is used to apply to a knee specimen, simultaneously and independently, the specified load and/or displacement inputs while allowing unconstrained relative motion between the joint members. Satisfactory performance of the simulator has been established for walking gait conditions based on measurements on three fresh-frozen specimens.

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