Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD)

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Volume 51 Number 5, 2014
   Pages 761 — 774

Abstract — Stability analysis of electrical powered wheelchair-mounted robotic-assisted transfer device

Hongwu Wang, PhD;1* Chung-Ying Tsai, MS;1 Hervens Jeannis, MS;1 Cheng-Shiu Chung, MS;1 Annmarie Kelleher, MS;1–2 Garrett G. Grindle, MS;1 Rory A. Cooper, PhD1

1Human Engineering Research Laboratories, Department of Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System, Pittsburgh, PA; and Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; 2Center for Assistive Technology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

Abstract — The ability of people with disabilities to live in their homes and communities with maximal independence often hinges, at least in part, on their ability to transfer or be transferred by an assistant. Because of limited resources and the expense of personal care, robotic transfer assistance devices will likely be in great demand. An easy-to-use system for assisting with transfers, attachable to electrical powered wheelchairs (EPWs) and readily transportable, could have a significant positive effect on the quality of life of people with disabilities. We investigated the stability of our newly developed Strong Arm, which is attached and integrated with an EPW to assist with transfers. The stability of the system was analyzed and verified by experiments applying different loads and using different system configurations. The model predicted the distributions of the system’s center of mass very well compared with the experimental results. When real transfers were conducted with 50 and 75 kg loads and an 83.25 kg dummy, the current Strong Arm could transfer all weights safely without tip-over. Our modeling accurately predicts the stability of the system and is suitable for developing better control algorithms to enhance the safety of the device.

Key words: center of mass, center of mass distribution, electrical powered wheelchair, model, robotic transfer device, safety, stability, Strong Arm, tip-over stability, transfer.


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This article and any supplementary material should be cited as follows:
Wang H, Tsai C, Jeannis H, Chung C, Kelleher A, Grindle GG, Cooper RA. Stability analysis of electrical powered wheelchair-mounted robotic-assisted transfer device. J Rehabil Res Dev. 2014;51(5):761–74.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1682/JRRD.2013.11.0240
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Last Reviewed or Updated  Thursday, August 28, 2014 10:11 AM

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