3D-printed hybrid robotic exoskeleton suit helps paraplegic woman walk

A keen skier who was left paralysed from the waist down after an accident can now walk again, thanks to the world’s first 3D printed hybrid robotic exoskeleton suit. Three-dimensional printer makers 3D systems have been working with robotic exoskeleton maker Ekso Bionics to make a custom suit for test pilot Amanda Boxtel, who was paralysed in a fall on the slopes of Aspen, Colorado in 1992.

In 1992, Amanda Boxtel suffered a vicious skiing accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down. Doctors said she would never walk again. This week, she proved them wrong, with the help of the world’s first 3D printed exoskeleton that gives her the ability to climb out of her wheelchair and walk once again. The Ekso-Suit Amanda wears is fully bespoke. 3D Systems used data from a full body scan to print custom-tailored pieces that fit exactly to Amanda’s body. Mechanical components from EksoBionics provide the automation, allowing Amanda to safely use her legs and a pair of canes to walk around.

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