Axiomatic design of a manually powered wheelchair lift mechanism
Author(s)DiGenova, Kevin (Kevin J.); Coleman, Chris
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
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The objective of this research is to create an inexpensive mechanism which gives wheelchair users the ability to adjust the vertical height of their chair while seated. There are currently 1.5 million manual wheelchair users in the United States. However, no manual height adjust mechanisms are available in the current marketplace. Increased vertical range of sight and reach will result in unprecedented levels of independence for wheelchair users. We applied the theory of axiomatic design as a methodology for designing a mechanism to fill this compelling unmet need. Careful consideration of the functional and physical domains guided us to an effective solution to this design problem. A proof of concept prototype was created to demonstrate the potential of this design solution. This prototype is capable of lifting a person of 2501bs weight 15 inches off of the ground while seated in the wheelchair. This design solution is viable, and with continued work we hope that it may someday come to fruition as an effective and useful product.
Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, 2007.Includes bibliographical references (leaves 65-66).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Mechanical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology