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Honda’s experimental walking aid set for home shores after it gets EU stamp of approval

Honda’s Walking Assist Device, a mobility aid which supports rehabilitate people with walking difficulties, has received European accreditation which permits it to commercialize the device within EU markets.

The device has obtained the Medical Devices Directive certification, which permits Honda to affix the CE marking, a certification mark that indicates conformity with EU standards.

Conforming to EU standards and CE marking on the product are compulsory in order to distribute and sell the product in EU countries.

Honda’s experimental walking assist system helps support bodyweight to decrease the load on the user’s legs while walking leading to reduced fatigue and less physical exertion.

The device was inspired by the development of Honda’s ASIMO humanoid robot which involved studying how humans walk and incorporating technology.

The latest model is a 6.5kg (including the battery pack) dual-motor device that propels the wearer forward. A single charge of its lithium ion battery yields two hours of walking.

Honda has applied for over 130 patents for its walking assist devices and in July 2015 it officially made the product available in Japan for commercial purchase. The company has also introduced varying model sizes to suit different people’s heights.