CYBERDYNE Inc. is a venture firm which is established by Dr. Yoshiyuki Sankai, University of Tsukuba, Japan, in order to materialize his idea to utilize Robot Suit HAL® for the benefit of humankind in the field of many aspects but most importantly, medicine, caregiving, and welfare.

Dr. Sankai talks to the press during the launch of HAL

CYBERDYNE Inc. was established in June 2004, in order to disseminate the research result of the professor, for the benefit of the public. CYBERDYNE Inc., not only materializing technology for practical use but also builds up a strong research and development system in order to hear authentic voices of end users and makes a further leap. Consequently, CYBERDYNE Inc. will launch creative products.

Robot Suit HAL® was developed with the technologies created in Sankai Laboratory of Tsukuba University as an application of “Cybernics*” advocated by Prof. Sankai.

Wearing HAL by a patient will lead to fusion or joining of man, machine and information. HAL® assists a physically challenged person to move and enable him or her to exert bigger motor energy than usual. HAL® is also considered as the system that accelerates a motor learning of cerebral nerves.

Major causes of lower limb disabilities are disorders of the cerebral and nervous muscular system. In those cases, the brain cannot use ordinary neural pathways and cannot order to move the legs. HAL is the only robotic remedial device that can teach the brain how to move the legs.

It is applicable as a medical device to patients of Musculoskeletal Ambulation Disability Symptom Complex [MADS], who suffer from spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, cerebrovascular diseases, diseases of the brain and neuromuscular system, etc.

HAL has adjustable elements to wearers’ various constitutions can fit their leg lengths, hip widths and feet sizes in wide ranges. With its seamless adjustment mechanism, HAL can embrace the wearer’s body. And when a person moves the body, various signals are sent from the brain to muscles through nerves, and then HAL assists him or her in walking, standing up, and sitting down with his or her own legs.

HAL has a freely detachable controller where the operator can manipulate all the operations, such as start/stop of assistance, alteration of settings and confirmation of motion statuses, closely watching the movements of the wearer. Tailor-made assistance for individual wearers makes training with HAL for Medical Use – Lower Limb Model more effective.

A demo on what HAL does to assist a patient

The mechanism to move the human body does not end up with only moving muscles. The brain confirms how the body moved on what sort of signals. When HAL® has appropriately assisted the motions of “walking”, the feeling “I could walk!” is fed back to the brain. By this means, the brain becomes able to learn the way to emit necessary signals for “walking” gradually. This leads to “the important first step” in walking of the physically challenged person without being assisted by HAL®. The only robot that can provide appropriate solutions for motions to the brain is HAL®.

HAL is definitely a breakthrough and a lot of patients can benefit from it. But with this modern technology, how can an ordinary Juan De La Cruz afford it?

For now, they are coordinating with the government through its various tasked agencies like DOH, Philhealth and the like on how to properly manage and disseminate all info regarding HAL.