IRSST - Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail

Development of a system that can be used in the field to measure the coupling forces at the interface between the hand and the handle of portable vibrating tools


Worker exposure to hand-arm vibrations may lead to various health problems involving the circulation (Raynaud’s syndrome), a loss of sensitivity in the fingers, or may even worsen various musculoskeletal disorders. The vibration dose received by workers is currently quantified according to the provisions of international standard ISO 5349, which provides guiding principles for measuring and evaluating the vibrations transmitted by hand-held tools. However, several research teams are questioning certain aspects of this standard, such as frequency weighting and the non-consideration of coupling forces such as the gripping force and thrusting force.
The aim of this research project is to develop a low-cost system for measuring the static and dynamic forces that are exerted between the hand and the handle during work with vibrating tools, based on the type of tool, the operator’s posture, and his work habits. The generalized use of such a system will allow a better estimation of the health risks associated with the operation of vibrating portable tools and also, the identification of solution scenarios for minimizing these forces in order to preserve the workers’ health.

Additional Information

Type: Project
Number: 0099-6570
Status: Completed
Year of completion: 2015