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HERMES-Hyper-flexible bimanual robot manipulation and packing of deformable parts in the footwear industry

The need

The footwear industry accounts for some of the shortest production runs to be found (eight pairs of shoes is the average order size). Automization is more and more required in order to ensure competiveness in this growing market. The introduction of intelligent robotic technologies can contribute to overcome the complexity in the automation of the associated production processes.

HERMES approach

In discussion with SMEs from the footwear industry, a set of manual operations in the manufacturing process has been identified as most suitable to apply robotics technologies and to identify further technological challenges. The goal of the HERMES experiment is to study, analyze and finally implement the packaging of shoes on a robot system that mimics the required degree of flexibility and dexterity provided by the human workers.


The use of a bimanual system with anthropomorphic hands has been chosen as it could also be applied to solve other processes of similar or even higher complexity in the future and thus provide a holistic approach towards automization in footwear industry.

HERMES results

The HERMES experiment will demonstrate the potential to apply robotic technologies in the packaging process of the high added value shoe production. Important key technologies for bimanual manipulation, specifically in terms of detection and manipulation of non-rigid parts, will be developed and transferred to potential system integrators for future commercialization.


1)NBIO- Universidad Miguel Hernandez de Elche (Nicolas Garcia Aracil)

2)IPA- Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V.


    Duration: 18 months

    Funding institution: European commission

    Funded under: Seventh Framework Programme

    23 January 2013 No comments

    Medical Imaging Technologies- Robot-assisted Rehabilitation

    Medical Imaging Technologies

    The main objective of this project is to measure rehabilitation outcomes using medical imaging technologies. In short, the idea is using Diffusion MRI and fMRI to analyze the advantages of using robot-assisted rehabilitation therapy.

    This project is a collaboration between our research group at Universidad Miguel Hernandez and Inscanner.

    Financial Entity: Universidad Miguel Hernández and Inscanner

    Researchers: Nicolas Garcia Aracil, Eduardo Fernandez Jover, Angela Bernabeu

    22 January 2013 No comments

    PUPArm- Proof of Concept


    The main objective of this project is to analyse the outcome of the robot-assisted rehabilitation therapy in at least 30 sub-acute and chronic stroke patients, randomly assigned to 2 different experimental groups:

    Control group: this group, composed by at least 15 patients, will receive three months of standard rehabilitation therapy, according to rehabilitation protocols defined by clinical experts.

    Robot-aided rehabilitation group: this group, composed by at least 15 patients, will receive three months of robot-aided rehabilitation therapy, according to rehabilitation protocols defined by clinical experts.

    The aim of these experiments is to provide the “proof of concept” of the PUParm robot to be a technological system, capable of delivering rehabilitation therapy, tailored on the specific needs of the single patient.

    Financial Entity: Universidad Miguel Hernández

    Researchers: Nicolas Garcia Aracil, Eduardo Fernandez Jover, Maria Dolores Garcia, Daniel Tornero, ….

    22 January 2013 No comments


    El objetivo principal de este proyecto es el desarrollar un dispositivo robótico para la administración temprana de terapias de Neurorehabilitación. El dispositivo es una novedad a nivel mundial ya que permitirá al paciente realizar sus ejercicios de rehabilitación tanto en posición de cúbito supino como en sedestación e implementará técnicas ampliamente utilizadas para la rehabilitación del miembro superior como técnicas de terapia ocupacional para la rehabilitación de la actividades de la vida diaria.

    El dispositivo que se desarrollará en este proyecto incorporar métodos avanzados de estimulación distal del miembro superior mediante distintos sistemas de agarre al dispositivo y a su vez incorporará nuevas herramientas de auto-adaptación de la terapia en función del estado del paciente y el rendimiento del mismo durante la ejecución de las terapias.

    El dispositivo que se pretende desarrollar será único a nivel mundial lo que permite pensar en un seguro éxito de comercialización del mismo una vez validado clínicamente y certificado.

    El proyecto HELPER se estructura en siete paquetes de trabajo. El PT0 y el PT6 tienen un carácter general y sirven para gestionar tanto el seguimiento, la coordinación como el impacto, la explotación y diseminación del proyecto. El PT1 marca las pautas de trabajo para el resto de tareas, definiendo un sistema conjunto e integrado de soluciones tecnológicas y administrativas. Los PT2, PT3 y PT4 se encargan de investigar, diseñar y desarrollar las diversas tecnologías que componen el sistema HELPER. Finalmente, el PT5 se encarga de integrar las innovaciones tecnológicas en la plataforma, y validar mediante test experimentales el sistema desarrollado


    Reference: CDTI (IDI-20120770)

    Financial Entity: CDTI (Centre for Industrial Technological Development)- Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (Spain).

    Main Researcher: Nicolas Garcia Aracil

    22 January 2013 No comments

    HUMBIOS- Interpretation of the human intention and performance through biomedical signals and analysis of kinematic and dynamic motion

    This project focuses on the work of interpreting the information provided by the user (surgeon in the surgical environment and patient / therapist in rehabilitation setting.) The main work of this subproject is based on:

    a)  The interpretation of kinematic and dynamic information of the human intention and performance. To accomplish this goal, software modules will be developed to extend the features of already known packages as OpenSim from These studies are directly applicable to other sub-projects that participate in this request.

    b)  The interpretation of human intention and action through biomedical signals and their use as actuators to produce biofeedback. It is proposed to work on the selection and integration of biomedical signals in a new intelligent bio-cooperative controller capable of improving human-machine interaction. These studies are directly applicable to other sub-projects.

    c)  The development of a demonstrator of the benefits of the cooperative controller for a rehabilitation setting. The objective is to evaluate the benefits of including the patient in the control loop from the point of view of the patient’s motivation. With this aim, the experimental protocol will be defined first, and then an extensive validation in healthy subjects will be carried out, in order to evaluate and compare the performance of a robotic system for an upper limb of 2 planar degrees freedom. Finally, the opinion of physiotherapists and users on the level satisfaction with the use of the prototypes will be evaluated with questionnaires. The responses will be reviewed in a report of improvements that will include the comments from surveys.


    Reference: DPI2011-29660-C04-04

    Financial Entity: Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (Spain).

    Main Researcher: Nicolas Garcia Aracil

    link a web

    22 January 2013 No comments


    Sorry, this entry is only available in Español.

    23 December 2011 No comments

    BRAIN2MOTION: Exoskeletal – neuroprosthesis hybrid robotic system for the upper limb controlled by a multimodal brain-neural interface

    28 July 2011 No comments

    iProstate. 3D rendering tool for localization and staging of prostate cancer

    iProstate is a software application (spanish registration nº V-159-11) developed by Nbio and José Luis Ruiz-Cerdá, MD from the Hospital la Fe from Valencia.

    iProstate allows the introduction of data from biopsies, PSA and Gleason from a patient and it makes a prediction for the staging and spatial localization of the tumoral tissues.

    iProstate also allows the 3D visualization of the tumour. iProstate has several options for making reports for each patient.

    More information on

    29 March 2011 No comments

    PUPArm project. Pneumatic parallel arm for neuro-rehabilitation

    PUPArm is a planar device with 2 degrees of freedom, designed for neuromotor rehabilitation of upper arm and for the research on biofeedback algorithms.

    PUPArm is moved by pneumatic actuators and it is intrinsically safe. PUPArm system integrates heart pulse sensor for measurement of the patient state.

    More information on

    29 March 2011 No comments

    European Project ECHORD-MAAT

    The MAAT project aims at developing a new robotic system for the administration of highly sophisticated therapy to stroke patients able to (i) maximise patient motivation and involvement in the therapy and (ii) continuously assess the progress of the recovery from the functional and neurological viewpoint, with special attention to the issue of safety in human-robot interaction. The main novelty of the MAAT approach is to close patient in the loop and use multi-sensory data (such as motion, forces, voice, muscle activity, heart rate, skin conductance etc.) to adaptively and dynamically change complexity of the therapy and real-time displays of an immersive virtual reality system in accordance with specific patient requirements. For the experimental validation of the MAAT approach, two prototypes of multimodal robotic platforms will be developed, using technologies available in the ECHORD equipment list, which are based on two different industrial robot arms. They will allow validating the scientific value of the proposed approach, comparing performance of the two industrial robots when used for rehabilitation and collaborating with the manufacturers to address specific modifications coming out from the application. To pursue project objectives, MAAT gathers two partners from two different European countries (Italy and Spain) with complementary expertise in robotics. The tight collaboration of the project coordinator with medical groups of Neurology and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation of the University Campus Bio-medico will be notably beneficial for a preliminary clinical validation of the MAAT system on post-stroke patients.

    Visit for more information.

    16 March 2011 No comments