Whenever something moves in the human body, our muscles do the work. However, while today it is part of everyday clinical practice to replace joints and bones with artificial parts, reconstruction medicine still has great difficulties finding a suitable replacement for damaged or destroyed muscles. There is one muscle in particular whose function is vital and is the subject of several studies, but without convincing results: the heart. Other muscles of the body actually share mechanical similarities with the heart, including the sphincter muscle, which, if damaged, can cause urinary incontinence. Facial muscles also share such similarities and must be replaced after an accident or injury. Although these muscles do not play a vital role in the body, they remain extremely important for patients’ quality of life, for example a well-functioning sphincter muscle is critical in order to avoid unpleasant side effects such as needing to wear diapers. The parallels between muscle types could allow the development of universal electromechanical multifunctional actuators. Within the new ?Center for Artificial Muscles?, EPFL, in cooperation with its partners in heart surgery - University of Bern and Reconstructive Medicine - University of Zürich, aims to become the world’s leading reference for the development and clinical transfer of a brand new technological approach for artificial muscles in the human body.
The proposed keynote intends to show some examples realized in this new center together with multi-disciplinary projects linked woth industry.
Yves Perriard obtained his Master in ‘Microengineering’ from EPFL in 1989 and his PhD form the Electrical Department in 1992. He became cofounder of the company Micro-Beam SA and had the lead of the company until 1998 doing special electric drives. In 1999 he joined EPFL as Senior Lecturer and in 2003 he was appointed Titular Professor and leader of the Integrated Actuators Laboratory. In 2009 he is also appointed Vice-Director of the Microengineering Institute EPFL Neuch?tel. Senior member IEEE and Member EPE, he is also vice-president of the EPE (European Power Electronics) society board in Brussels.
Yves Perriard is interested in innovating, analyzing and creating new actuators associated with their electronic devices. The multi-disciplinary work of his research makes him strongly in contact with industries in Switzerland and abroad. Yves Perriard has published over 180 papers, 5 patents and is co-author of one book. He is associate editor of several journals. Teacher at the Bachelor and Master level, he received twice the best teacher award of the Engineering Faculty in 2005 and 2007. More information can be found on the Integrated Actuators Laboratory web site http://lai.epfl.ch. In 2018, he launched a brand new center at EPFL on artificial muscles thanks to a donation of the Werner Siemens Foundation.