The objective of this project is to design, construct, and evaluate a device which will allow an individual with mobility impairments to independently move between a seated and standing position.
Many of the assistive transfer devices available today restrict individuals to wearing harnesses or slings and possibly require another person to aid the individual in transfer. Since the task of designing a mechanism which can be implemented in any type of transfer situation (chair/wheelchair to bed, toilet, shower and vice versa) is too complicated and exhaustive for such a study, the proposed solution considers the most general type of transfer - that between a seated and standing position.
The long-term vision of this project is to provide an elderly individual with not only an assistive transfer mechanism, but also with a mobile robot which could assist in transfer, perform fetch/carry tasks, and move the individual about the home. Transfer between wheelchair, chair, bed, and toilet would be possible using the attached sit-to-stand mechanism. Also, the person would be able to lean on the mobile robot and use it as an assistive walker. In addition, a pendant worn by the individual could be used as a beacon for the robot, allowing the person to summon the robot at any moment and use it to perform fetch/carry tasks.
This project was also the subject of a Master's thesis for the Biomechanics and Movement Science program at the University of Delaware.
Last updated: August 16, 1995