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The University of Southampton

Biomechanical engineer launches prosthetics software at world’s biggest tech show

Published: 7 January 2020
Dr Joshua Steer
Dr Joshua Steer has created a cloud-based design assistant for prosthetists

Enterprise Fellow Dr Joshua Steer from the University of Southampton has unveiled intelligent software for improved fitting of prosthetics at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2020.

The software, which spun out of Southampton’s Bioengineering Sciences Research Group, launched today as part of the only UK university exhibit at the world-renowned technology showcase in Las Vegas.

Joshua and his spinout company, Radii Devices, is demonstrating the cloud-based design assistant for prosthetists over the next four days on the University’s Future Worlds accelerator stand in Eureka Park.

Radii Devices is based on five years of research at Southampton to improve device fit and comfort for the estimated 40 million people worldwide who require prosthetic or orthotic services.

The team applies technologies used in F1 car design and America’s Cup yacht racing and makes them available and accessible to clinicians. The software supports the design of prosthetics and orthotics, through cutting-edge engineering design and prediction of device fit before manufacture.

Getting the fit of these devices right first time is so important for users. We’re determined to create the tools which clinicians deserve. We’re delighted to be launching our software at CES and can’t wait to start our clinical pilots scheduled for early 2020.

Whereas the robotics of prosthetic legs and hands have seen huge advances in recent years, the comfort of the socket itself has received a fraction of the attention, with a reported average of nine fitting sessions required to achieve a comfortable fit.

Joshua secured a Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) Enterprise Fellowship last year to help advance the technology and landed a record £120,000 investment in a Dragons’ Den-style contest run by Future Worlds on campus.

Graham Stuart MP, Minister for Investment, says: “Congratulations to Radii Devices. There are few more exciting developments than seeing the UK’s world leading research capability turned into prosthetic and orthotic products which transform lives. We’re proud of our innovation eco-system and determined to strengthen it further. The outcomes are greater prosperity at home and better lives for those the technology serves.”

CES 2020 will include over 4,500 exhibiting companies and attract more than 180,000 attendees wanting to see the next generation of consumer technologies.

University startups SPYDERISK, a cyber-security threat assessment tool, and Aquark Technologies, which develops miniaturised components for quantum technology, are also exhibiting with Future Worlds at CES 2020.

Ben Clark, Future Worlds Director, says: “The Future Worlds stand at CES proudly puts UK university innovation on the world stage. Our students and academics are turning world-leading research into products that change the world. Exhibiting at CES has helped startups and spinouts from the University of Southampton gain hundreds of commercial leads and secure millions of pounds of investment, and we’re excited to see these latest innovations make global impact in 2020.”

Future Worlds is based in Booths 51733 and 51735 in Eureka Park at the Sands Expo. You can follow daily updates from Joshua and other University entrepreneurs on the Future Worlds website.


Software for prosthetic limb design

Radii Devices is a spinout using software to improve prosthetic limb design.

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