On treadmill automation and physiological control systems

Ajayi, Olatunbosun Oluwatoyin (2005) On treadmill automation and physiological control systems. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This thesis deals with a new approach to Treadmill Automation and Physiological Control Systems that will serve as a platform for enhanced rehabilitation therapy, and will open up and facilitate a major new area of research in physiological control systems. On treadmill automation, the investigation focussed on the feasibility of a low-cost non- contact position control system with the aim of maintaining a subject at a prescribed position during a treadmill training exercise in order to ensure safety at all times. The development of an automatic speed control for the treadmill was first carried out using an identified model for the treadmill motor dynamics (response from speed command to actual belt speed). Subsequently, the positioning control system was designed and tested. The fundamental limitations to treadmill automation performance include low bandwidth and long time delays of the hardware (treadmill and ultrasonic sensor). Interactions between natural human control and the position controller, and spontaneous variability of human movement due to body oscillations and swaying, are discussed. On physiological control systems, we considered two key variables - the heart rate and oxygen uptake. The purpose of this is to develop a means of controlling exercise intensity during treadmill exercise. On the control of heart rate, a model of heart rate response to changes in speed was obtained via the system identification method. Thereafter, a heart rate controller was developed, tested, and evaluated on three healthy subjects during treadmill exercise. The results of the experiments demonstrated that the developed heart rate controller is superior to the in-built treadmill heart rate controller. A novel system is developed for the control of oxygen uptake, and is thus presented. The system proved that it is possible to control exercise intensity using the level of oxygen uptake during moderate exercise. The results of this work demonstrate that a linear first order model is able to sufficiently capture the complex dynamics of oxygen uptake during treadmill exercise. A controller was developed using this model and tested on healthy subjects. Six healthy active subjects participated completely in the tests. The results of the tests with these subjects establish the robustness of the controllers to inter-subject variability. Furthermore, the controller was refined and tuned to improve the performance of the control signal (treadmill speed). This was achieved by designing a controller that incorporated a pre-filter in the system. The results of the experiments using this set-up with the same set of healthy subjects show a significant improvement on the control signal (smoother treadmill speed).

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: Adviser: Ken Hunt
Keywords: Kinesiology, Physical therapy
Date of Award: 2005
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2005-71150
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 10 May 2019 10:49
Last Modified: 10 May 2019 10:49
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/71150

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