FIGUR8 FUSION system for data-driven musculoskeletal (MSK) injury reduction and performance optimization
Award last edited on: 4/23/2021

Sponsored Program
Awarding Agency
Total Award Amount
Award Phase
Solicitation Topic Code
Principal Investigator
Donna Scarborough

Company Information

Figur8 Inc

2 Park Plaza Suite 605
Boston, MA 02116
   (617) 202-6750

Research Institution

University of Pittsburgh

Phase I

Contract Number: FA8649-21-P-0232
Start Date: 12/2/2020    Completed: 6/2/2021
Phase I year
Phase I Amount
Preventable musculoskeletal injuries (MSKI) remain the most significant threat to military readiness. In 2016, 52% of service members were injured; 19.6% on MSKI profile for 31-90 days, translating into $548 million in direct care costs and 25 million limited duty days. An epidemiology of MSKI among US Air Force Special Tactics Operators (2018) shows 1-year cumulative incidence of MSKIs was 49.2 injured Operators/100 Operators/year. Currently there is no human-centric system to accurately assess the quality of human movement for the design, implementation and tracking of operations that require heavy equipment (such as parachute ergonomics design) for preventive MSK care. For instance, Special Warfare Operators currently carry 150 to 200lbs of equipment while walking to, boarding, and exiting aircrafts. A Special Warfare team carries between 50- 100lbs of gear during combat operations and training with high injury rate. FIGUR8 presents great opportunities to bring data analytics to human-centric training, equipment load, load bearing body location, and other external factors. FIGUR8 Fusion System is a highly accurate, scalable, and wearable hardware and software to measure and apply artificial intelligence (AI) analytics to MSK data. FIGUR8’s system unlocks access to MSK health information for 90% less cost and can be done in 95% less time than traditional MSK analytics platforms and is currently being adopted for MSK injury diagnostic evaluation in clinical settings for injuries such as whiplash. FIGUR8 technology is a portable biomechanics tool developed to study human biomechanics from lab to field. This technology toolbox could capture posture, balance, lower back and leg muscle outputs outside laboratory settings, enabling relevant data collection reflecting how the load is being distributed over the body, and a scientific evaluation on the location of the load, weight distribution will affect range of motion, muscle activity and agility. Muscle strain, injury and fatigue are significant risks due in large part to sub-optimal ergonomic placement of this load. FIGUR8 technologies could capture posture, balance, lower back and leg muscle outputs outside laboratory settings, enabling relevant data collection in the field during unit activities. Our main goals are to utilize FIGUR8’s data collection and analysis capabilities to perform on-site evaluation of Special Warfare Operators to provide insight critical to reducing muscle strain and fatigue in order to improve overall safety during operations and training and help ensure combat effectiveness, optimize training and reduce risk of injury. We will use a series of functional movements including the squat, lunge, and vertical jump, to evaluate the effect of load bearing on movement.

Phase II

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Start Date: 00/00/00    Completed: 00/00/00
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