UNB researcher uses AI to improve the lives of amputees
Dr. Jon Sensinger is a visionary in the field of biomedical engineering who has dedicated his career to enhancing the lives of amputees with upper limb prostheses through his pioneering research and innovation.
Dr. Jon Sensinger is a professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton and director of the university’s Institute of Biomedical Engineering (IBME) which is one of three international leaders in prothesis control. Sensinger was recruited to UNB in 2013 from the USA’s top rehabilitation hospital.
Sensinger’s research aims to explore the role of AI in making prostheses more adaptable and performance enhancement in unexpected situations.
Sensinger’s interest in human-robot interactions and prosthetics piqued in middle school and he has since devoted his career to enhancing the accessibility of prostheses. Currently, his research aims to employ AI to make prostheses more adaptable and flexible to respond efficiently during unforeseen circumstances.
Sensinger notes that prostheses are an important tool for restoring abilities in people with an amputation and can revive the hope for autonomy and independent functioning in daily life. However, over fifty percent of patients eligible for an upper limb prothesis refuse them because of they are inefficient and challenging to navigate. Sensinger hopes to solve for this problem by equipping the AI with learning abilities to retain how the amputee lives and moves.
The role of AI in improving prostheses performance efficiency
Sensinger’s current research aims to make prostheses more adaptable and flexible so that users are able to efficiently respond to unforeseen events.
Over fifty percent of eligible patients eligible refuse upper limb prostheses because they are inefficient and difficult to use. Sensinger hopes to solve this problem by equipping the AI with learning abilities to retain how the amputee lives and moves.
Driving innovation in New Brunswick:
Sensinger says ResearchNB is part of what brought him to New Brunswick. The foundation provided start-up funding for a large project that eventually turned into a $2.5-million contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, examining how humans synthesize data in the decisions that they are making.
Sensinger notes that only three places in the world have had a consistent track record of innovative research in the upper limb prostheses field, one of which is UNB’s Institute of Biomedical Engineering. Impressed by their technical abilities and professionalism when working with UNB over two decades ago, Sensinger opted to relocate from Chicago to New Brunswick.
Sensinger has proven to be a leading force in the field of biomedical engineering as he guides innovation in New Brunswick and beyond with the goal of empowering individuals with amputations by reviving their independence and autonomy.