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A technique has been developed which enables the decomposition (separation) of a myoelectric signal into its constituent motor unit action potential trains. It consists of a multichannel (via one electrode) myoelectric signal recording procedure, a data compression algorithm, a digital filtering algorithm, and a hybrid visual-computer decomposition scheme. The algorithms have been implemented on a PDP 11/34 computer. Of the four major segments of the technique, the decomposition scheme is by far the most involved. The decomposition algorithm uses a-sophisticated template matching routine and details of the firing statistics of the motor units to identify motor unit action potentials in the myoelectric signal, even when they are super-imposed with other motor unit action potentials. In general, the algorithms of the decomposition scheme do not run automatically. They require input from the human operator to maintain reliability and accuracy during a decomposition.