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L M A O
KLIPPA: mountain-goat inspired prosthetic leg for rock climbers
Core77 has an excellent feature about a mountain-goat inspired prosthetic leg for rock climbers, developed and designed by Kai Lin.
Lin was fascinated by the exceptional climbing abilities from mountain goats, so he wondered if the same anatomy that allowed the goats to so swiftly and accurately scale the vertical surface could be applied to humans.
This was the beginning of KLIPPA—the name is Swedish for “cliff”—a prosthetic leg designed specifically for amputee rock climbers. With the seedling of the idea in mind, Lin dug deeper into the anatomy of mountain goats, learning that their hooves have small cupped surfaces that create suction, coupled with a hard outer shell that allows the goats to stabilize their bodies on even the steepest surfaces. Looking for design opportunities, the student stumbled upon the documentary High Ground, which tells the story of 11 veterans who heal mental and emotional trauma during a 20,000-foot Himalayan ascent. Lin also discovered that rock climbing was the first choice of physically demanding sports for veteran amputees looking to maintain an active lifestyle after returning from Afghanistan or Iraq. “I realized from the demographic of amputee patients that quite a few of them are wounded soldiers coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan, and many of them suffer from physical and psychological trauma,” Lin says. “That just gave me more reason to design something meaningful—not only for day-to-day patients but for someone who might use my rock-climbing prosthetic legs to help with their recovery process.”
Be sure to check Lin’s portfolio. Alltough, the design is unfortunately still a concept in progress, but it’s neatly illustrated and offers a lot of thoughts about biomimicry and use cases.
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