Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Space Tech Prosthetic Leg Helps To Reach Long-jump World Record

Date:
October 27, 2008
Source:
European Space Agency
Summary:
German athlete Wojtek Czyz, running with a space-tech enhanced prosthetic leg, set a new world record at the Paralympics 2008 in Beijing, reaching an amazing 6.50 m and beating the previous world record by 27 cm.

Wojtek Czyz with his improved long-jump prosthesis. The prosthesis consists of four pieces. The first is a shaft used to attach the prosthesis to the stump of the leg, the second is the artificial knee, the third is the knee joint element, an L-shaped bracket connecting the artificial knee to the fourth element, a carbon fibre spring that substitutes for the lower part of the leg and the foot.
Credit: MST (image) / ESA-Medialab AOES (diagram)

German athlete Wojtek Czyz, running with a space-tech enhanced prosthetic leg, set a new world record at the Paralympics 2008 in Beijing, reaching an amazing 6.50 m and beating the previous world record by 27 cm.

Related Articles


In spring 2004, ESA’s Technology Transfer Programme (TTP) technology broker MST Aerospace met with Wojtek Czyz and his trainer to perform a pre-screening of the most crucial elements of the prosthesis used by Czyz. Having lost part of his left leg three years before in a sports accident, he now uses a prosthesis in two athletic disciplines: long jump and sprint competitions.

"The objective was to see how to improve his performance, and we found the most important problem was related to a connection angle, the so-called L-bracket, between the knee joint and the foot module," explains Dr Werner Dupont, MST Aerospace Managing Director.

"In collaboration with the German company ISATEC, we developed a new L-bracket using materials originating from the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), an instrument that will be mounted on the International Space Station to study extraterrestrial anti-matter, matter and missing matter."

The advantage of these space materials is that they are extremely strong and at the same time lighter than conventional products available, both important advantages for top athletes’ performance. The problem with Czyz’ previous prosthesis was that it tended to break when he performed to the maximum of his capacity.

At the previous Paralympics Games in Athens Czyz competed with a space-tech enhanced prosthetic leg and won a gold medal in three disciplines: 100 m sprint, 200 m sprint and long jump.

Following this success, MST and ISATEC, a German engineering company dealing with light materials, continued to work on improving the prosthesis. In a series of investigations undertaken by MST, including a number of advanced calculations on the dynamic performance of the materials done by ISATEC, a single-part foot module made in carbon fibre reinforced plastics proved to be the most promising solution for a sprint prosthesis.

For the long jump discipline, the previous design consisting of an L-bracket and a foot module was proven to be the most efficient.

"We first started working on improving the prosthesis for the sprint discipline, and then further improved the long jump prosthesis as well," continues Dupont.

"This latest development turned out to be a great success at the Paralympics 2008, and helped Wojtek Czyz beat the world record by an incredible 27 cm."

"The use of lighter and extremely strong space materials in the development of new prostheses for top athletes has proven its worth both in Athens in 2004 and now again in Beijing in 2008. The next step, which we are already looking into with our partners, is to use this expertise for similar developments of prostheses for other disabled people."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Space Agency. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Space Agency. "Space Tech Prosthetic Leg Helps To Reach Long-jump World Record." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081003123250.htm>.
European Space Agency. (2008, October 27). Space Tech Prosthetic Leg Helps To Reach Long-jump World Record. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081003123250.htm
European Space Agency. "Space Tech Prosthetic Leg Helps To Reach Long-jump World Record." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081003123250.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Newsy (Nov. 27, 2014) — A recent test of a prototype Ebola vaccine generated an immune response to the disease in subjects. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) — Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins