Objective.Muscle activation patterns in the muscle-to-force null space, i.e. patterns that do not generate task-relevant forces, may provide an opportunity for motor augmentation by allowing to control additional end-effectors simultaneously to natural limbs. Here we tested the feasibility of muscular null space control for augmentation by assessing simultaneous control of natural and extra degrees of freedom.Approach.We instructed eight participants to control translation and rotation of a virtual 3D end-effector by simultaneous generation of isometric force at the hand and null space activity extracted in real-time from the electromyographic signals recorded from 15 shoulder and arm muscles. First, we identified the null space components that each participant could control more naturally by voluntary co-contraction. Then, participants performed several blocks of a reaching and holding task. They displaced an ellipsoidal cursor to reach one of nine targets by generating force, and simultaneously rotated the cursor to match the target orientation by activating null space components. We developed an information-theoretic metric, an index of difficulty defined as the sum of a spatial and a temporal term, to assess individual null space control ability for both reaching and holding.Main results.On average, participants could reach the targets in most trials already in the first block (72%) and they improved with practice (maximum 93%) but holding performance remained lower (maximum 43%). As there was a high inter-individual variability in performance, we performed a simulation with different spatial and temporal task conditions to estimate those for which each individual participants would have performed best.Significance.Muscular null space control is feasible and may be used to control additional virtual or robotics end-effectors. However, decoding of motor commands must be optimized according to individual null space control ability.

Gurgone, S., Borzelli, D., de Pasquale, P., Berger, D.J., Lisini Baldi, T., D'Aurizio, N., et al. (2022). Simultaneous control of natural and extra degrees of freedom by isometric force and electromyographic activity in the muscle-to-force null space. JOURNAL OF NEURAL ENGINEERING, 19(1) [10.1088/1741-2552/ac47db].

Simultaneous control of natural and extra degrees of freedom by isometric force and electromyographic activity in the muscle-to-force null space

Lisini Baldi, Tommaso;D'Aurizio, Nicole;Prattichizzo, Domenico;
2022

Abstract

Objective.Muscle activation patterns in the muscle-to-force null space, i.e. patterns that do not generate task-relevant forces, may provide an opportunity for motor augmentation by allowing to control additional end-effectors simultaneously to natural limbs. Here we tested the feasibility of muscular null space control for augmentation by assessing simultaneous control of natural and extra degrees of freedom.Approach.We instructed eight participants to control translation and rotation of a virtual 3D end-effector by simultaneous generation of isometric force at the hand and null space activity extracted in real-time from the electromyographic signals recorded from 15 shoulder and arm muscles. First, we identified the null space components that each participant could control more naturally by voluntary co-contraction. Then, participants performed several blocks of a reaching and holding task. They displaced an ellipsoidal cursor to reach one of nine targets by generating force, and simultaneously rotated the cursor to match the target orientation by activating null space components. We developed an information-theoretic metric, an index of difficulty defined as the sum of a spatial and a temporal term, to assess individual null space control ability for both reaching and holding.Main results.On average, participants could reach the targets in most trials already in the first block (72%) and they improved with practice (maximum 93%) but holding performance remained lower (maximum 43%). As there was a high inter-individual variability in performance, we performed a simulation with different spatial and temporal task conditions to estimate those for which each individual participants would have performed best.Significance.Muscular null space control is feasible and may be used to control additional virtual or robotics end-effectors. However, decoding of motor commands must be optimized according to individual null space control ability.
Gurgone, S., Borzelli, D., de Pasquale, P., Berger, D.J., Lisini Baldi, T., D'Aurizio, N., et al. (2022). Simultaneous control of natural and extra degrees of freedom by isometric force and electromyographic activity in the muscle-to-force null space. JOURNAL OF NEURAL ENGINEERING, 19(1) [10.1088/1741-2552/ac47db].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11365/1184023