“Heavy lifting” will become an anachronism if one robotics company has its way.
Created by suitX, the just-announced MAX (Modular Agile eXoskeleton) suit is designed for reducing stress on your back, shoulders and knees. It’s actually three smaller modules (backX, shoulderX and legX) that can be worn in combination or on their own.
Overall, the lab at the University of California (the backers of suitX) claims MAX will “reduce muscle force required to complete tasks by as much as 60 percent.”
So it’s not quite Iron Man. And the purpose of MAX seems geared toward manual labor: construction, shipbuilding and general material handling sites are mentioned, as are airport luggage handlers.
Certainly not as cool as the company’s Phoenix suits — which help paralyzed people walk again — but a good first step to a brighter, possisbly lighter future.