Starting from scratch, Abhijit Boppana, a junior in mechanical engineering has learned how to use equipment, build a model, test the sensors, analyze the data and make adjustments to the Smart Insoles project.

Stacy Bamberg, a professor in mechanical engineering at the U, is one of the world’s leading experts on insole technology.  Many students have worked side-by-side with her to develop the insoles, mostly graduate students in the mechanical engineering.  But there is one who is still completing his undergraduate education. Boppana has been working with Bamberg for the past year.

The insole developed by Bamberg is able to sense a person’s gait, walking speed, limp, weight distribution and other abnormalities using special sensors suspended in a core of gel.

When someone using the insole knocks against a table or wall, trips or falls, the senors loose accuracy and need to be recalibrated.  Boppana is developing a system to recalibrate those sensors.

“The sensors are able to track not only how many steps a person is taking, but also how high they lift their foot off the ground and how fast it is moving,” Bamberg says.

Throughout the process, Boppana has been able to determine the angular velocity and acceleration of the sensors mounted on a robot.

“What this project has provided me with the most is experience,” he says.  “It will be useful in future projects and career pursuits.”


This and other innovative student stories can be found at U Technology Venture Development