Roceso Technologies is the first and only soft robotics company in Singapore, and a global pioneer. Its soft robotic solutions provide functional assistance to patients with limb motor function impairments during rehabilitation and daily living. Their flagship product, EsoGlove, is one of the world’s lightest hand rehabilitation and exoskeleton devices – offering top functionality and comfort.
Co-founder and CEO of Roceso Jane Wang started her entrepreneurial journey with an ecommerce business importing female apparel. However, she knew she wanted to do something more meaningful, complex and tech-related. Healthcare was her passion. Fuelled with her training as a Mechatronics Engineer, a medical robotics start-up was the best fit.
From left to right: Prof. Raye Yeow, Jane Wang, Dr. Hong Kai Yap
Targeting rehabilitation centres, hospitals and nursing homes, the EsoGlove assists patients with physical impairments arising from neurological disorders or injuries. Conventional hand rehabilitation robotic devices are typically driven by rigid electromechanical motors that move the fingers through a single degree of freedom – making it unnatural and uncomfortable. The EsoGlove serves to provide a portable and comfortable method of carrying out rehabilitative exercises, functional task-specific training, and activities of daily living. Completely made of soft materials such as elastomer and fabric, EsoGlove is wearable and lightweight in nature. As a result, it does not restrict the finger joint movements for increased comfort during use.
One of the biggest challenges they had to overcome was design transfer, a tedious but crucial task to convert the prototype to a sellable device and scale it for manufacturing. It was also necessary to source for the right suppliers for the various functions and parts of the device, partially because as a pioneer soft robotics company, they needed expertise in engineering, design, software, fabric and manufacturing.
Other than soft robotic devices, Roceso is currently working on Brain Computer Interface, sensing and IoT – continuing to improve intelligence, usability and portability of its robots over time. When enough data is collected from its customers worldwide, advancements in machine learning and AI can be made to conduct research/commercialisation on highly intelligent rehab and assistive robotics.
“Incubation facilities, legal and book-keeping support provided by NUS Enterprise saved us so much on rental, legal and accounting costs – keeping our burn rate low. As we are part of the JUMPSTART committee (a joint NUS-NTU biomedical accelerator), NUS Enterprise supported us in training and helped us to build connections. We also received a $15,000 Go-Global grant from NUS Enterprise for market expansion.”
Roceso is currently incubated at the NUS Enterprise @Singapore Science Park facility.