Ambulatory assessment of daily life interactions between the human body and environment

The PowerSensor project, funded by STW, is a collaboration between two research groups: Biomedical Signals and Systems (BSS) and Transducer Science and Technology (TST). In addition several user parties are involved (Xsens, Sensata, Philips, TNO, Roessingh R&D, VU Amsterdam).

The specific objectives are:


Develop a miniature PowerSensor measuring 3D accelerations and forces.


Develop optimal algorithms to estimate orientations, 3D velocity, 3D position, power transferred and work done.


Characterization of interacting body dynamics.


Apply the miniature PowerSensors and algorithms in a PowerGlove that can sense power transfer between the human hand and the environment.


Demonstrate the potential of the PowerSensor and PowerGlove concepts in representative applications.


The physical interaction between the human body and the environment is involved in many situations, e.g. sports rehabilitation and ergonomics. In all of these cases, this dynamic interaction is to be optimized or improved. For this purpose, it is essential to assess this interaction quantitatively in terms of force and movement at the interface. Next the power transfer, work performed and effective dynamics of both the human body and the environment during the performance of functional tasks in the environment can be estimated.



Different algorithms will be developed in order to accomplish the objectives:


Hand / finger kinematics (orientations/accelerations/velocities/positions).


Power transfer (force times velocity) between hand and environment.


Dynamics of interacting bodies.


Evaluation of task performance during functional daily life arm/hand tasks.

A combination of inertial and magnetic sensors will be used for the estimation of hand / finger kinematics. In parallel to algorithm development, sensing hardware and a suitable glove system will be designed.

Current status:


We have realized the hardware + software to estimate full hand and finger kinematics (figure left / video’s).


6 DoF miniature force / torque sensor has been realized by TST group (figure right). For more information please visit the UT MESA TST link on the right.

Research themes

From Neural Circuit Behaviour to Human Sensory-Motor Function

Principal Investigator tracks

Peter H. Veltink: Sensing and Control of Human Movement



People involved

Peter Veltink

Henk Kortier

Victor Sluiter

Remco Wiegerink (TST)

Miko Elwenspoek (TST)

Robert Brookhuis (TST)


2009- 2014


Project website