Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD)

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Test method for empirically determining inertial properties of manual wheelchairs

Matthew R. Eicholtz, MS, et al.


Figure 1.  Model of iMachine design. ?? = angle of oscillation, A = transducer A, B = transducer B, C = transducer C, d = distance, k = spring stiffness, O = center point, R = radius, x = x-axis, y = y-axis.

The robust estimation of inertial properties is cru- cial in studies on manual wheelchair efficiency. The mechanical work and forces necessary for a wheel- chair to execute a turning maneuver are directly pro- portional to the moment of inertia of the wheelchair. We have designed a test method to accurately deter- mine wheelchair mass and moment of inertia using a spring-loaded rotating turntable. This research will be most useful to researchers interested in wheelchair inertia experiments. However, all manual wheelchair users may indirectly benefit from this work because it may inform better wheelchair design.

Volume 49 Number 1, 2012
   Pages 51 — 62


View HTML  ¦  View PDF  ¦  Contents Vol. 49, No. 1
This article and any supplementary material should be cited as follows:
Eicholtz MR, Caspall JJ, Dao PV, Sprigle S, Ferri A. Test method for empirically determining inertial properties of manual wheelchairs. J Rehabil Res Dev. 2012;49(1):51–62.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1682/JRRD.2011.03.0045
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Last Reviewed or Updated  Wednesday, February 15, 2012 2:18 PM

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