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Applied Bionics and Biomechanics
Volume 7 (2010), Issue 2, Pages 143-151

Immobilisation of a Large Animal for Imaging Purposes

W. Szyszkowski and Wei Cai

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Saskatchewan, 57 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada S7N 5A9

Received 5 March 2009

Copyright © 2010 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The mobility of a horse in the standing position with its hooves fixed to the ground is investigated to assist designing a minimally obstructing system for restraining large animals. The horse is modelled as a mechanical linkage driven by muscle forces. The linkage's configuration patterns, active joints and the forces associated with motion initiation are studied by reducing it to a mechanism with a low number of degrees of freedom. A restraint system blocking the motion of active joints with ropes is proposed as an alternative to massive mechanical devices restraining the whole body. The system has been verified experimentally on a sheep.