Implementing exoskeletons in meat processing

23 November 2023
Focus area: Safety & wellbeing
Program stream: People & culture
Project number: 2022-1072
With the arrival of exoskeletons as possible tools to enhance worker physical capacity, this project investigated the viability of current and emerging exoskeletal devices that may be of use to the Australian red meat processing industry. These devices were evaluated based on whether they could be used in industry immediately, immediately with minor changes, or modified for use in the future. 

The study was split into three stages. Stage one involved the identification and selection of current and emerging devices, stage two involved laboratory-based testing of selected devices, and stage three involved processor-based testing of the devices. 

With appropriate safety precautions in place, the study concluded that exoskeletons and other human assistance technologies have great potential to be useful in reducing the physical demands of many manual tasks, improving operator efficiency, and accelerating the development of greater mechanisation and automation.
Previous in this focus area 16 May 2016 AMPC summary – food safety and quality assurance for SMEs Next in this focus area 20 June 2022 Industry 4.0 – artificial intelligence / machine learning stage 1 (machine talking to humans)