Robotic exoskeleton developer Wandercraft has raised $17.8 million in a Series B funding round, according to a ZDNet report.
Funds from the round are slated to support certifications and regulatory clearances necessary to bring the exoskeleton to market, according to the report.
The Paris-based company claims that its exoskeleton is the 1st to have managed to replicate the human gait, something many exoskeleton companies have been in pursuit of, ZDNet reports.
Wandercraft founder & GM Matthieu Masselin claims the system delivers a “truly bipedal walk compared to Ekso or ReWalk, which are actually offering quadrupedal walk,” according to an interview, as the other company’s exoskeletons two legs are completed with 2 other contact points
“We implement strategies developed by the teams of Jessy Grizzle in Ann Harbor and Aaron Ames in Caltech for bipedal walk which have shown incredible robustness in real hardware and extreme likeness to human walk. We collaborate closely with them,” Masselin said, according to ZDNet. “This is all for one purpose: getting rid of crutches and achieving a device that will ensure system stability, rather than relying on the user for it. This is extremely important, as in the case of Rewalk or Ekso, physician’s feedback is that [the crutches] can hurt shoulders quite a lot and do not allow for effective treatment.”
The company will focus on the mobility market initially, according to the interview, looking to rehabilitation centers and mobility impaired individuals initially with plans for later leasing to individuals.
Wandercraft is hopeful that it will receive CE Mark approval in the European Union by the 2nd half of 2018.