When shopping for an electric wheelchair to use on a daily basis or while travelling, there are plenty of options to consider. One important factor to take into account when selecting your product is how easy it is to transport and fold down when not in use.
The KD Smart Chair is an excellent example of this. It’s lightweight and compact, making it effortless to move around.
What is a Smart Electric Wheelchair?
Smart Electric Wheelchairs are electric wheelchairs equipped with computer technology and sensors to assist paralyzed individuals in their daily lives.
Smart wheelchairs come in a range of types to assist those with mobility issues. Some utilize EEG-based brain signals for control, while others can be operated using joystick or touch/gesture input methods.
Some smart electric wheelchairs also enable health monitoring of the user, making them ideal for road accident survivors, stroke patients, or injured individuals who require special care and assistance with moving around.
At present, most smart wheelchairs available are heavily modified power chairs that have been equipped with computers and sensors. Some have been mounted on mobile robot bases while others are fully integrated into standard power chairs.
How Does a Smart Electric Wheelchair Work?
A smart electric wheelchair is comprised of various hardware components, such as sensors that detect obstacles in front of it and a computer algorithm that determines its direction. Utilizing this data, the system sends instructions to its motors so it can move in its intended manner.
Power wheelchairs are popular among those with physical or neurological conditions that make walking difficult. Usually equipped with a joystick, users can move the chair forward, backward, left or right by simply pressing down on its handle.
The wheelchair base consists of large drive wheels and smaller casters. These can be placed at the front, middle or rear for added stability.
The wheelchair’s motor, consisting of a commutator and brushes, produces energy to cause the rotor to spin. Brushes break down over time, leading to chair malfunctioning. However, there are brushless motors which operate more quietly and smoothly; these motors last longer while using less electricity – thus saving you money on energy costs!
What are the Benefits of a Smart Electric Wheelchair?
A smart electric wheelchair is an advanced mobility aid with numerous features, such as automated navigation, safety checks and remote control capabilities.
Smart wheelchairs typically rely on machine vision to detect natural or artificial landmarks in their environment, though some also utilize radio beacons. A third class of smart wheelchairs fuses data from multiple sensors in order to avoid drop-offs (e.g., Rolland , SENARIO).
Smart wheelchairs have also been created to assist those with mobility disabilities in navigating their home or workplace environments safely. These assistive devices can increase clients’ independence, confidence level, self-efficacy and reported desire to use technology more effectively.
These advantages have enabled increased access for those who might otherwise be denied PWCs due to safety concerns. Through the use of information collected by smart wheelchairs, therapists can more accurately assess their clients’ ability to operate a PWC, leading to improved patient care and lessening social stigma associated with disability.
What are the Drawbacks of a Smart Electric Wheelchair?
Smart wheelchairs are an amazing innovation in the world of mobility. However, they also come with their share of drawbacks.
The primary disadvantage of these systems is that they require extensive user input in order to function. This could become a distraction to users and cause them to feel pressured into using the system in order to reach their destination.
Another disadvantage is their cost-effectiveness. This arises due to the need for advanced sensors which are compact, cost-effective and long lasting.
Smart wheelchairs typically rely on sonar and infrared (IR) technology for detection of obstacles on surfaces that are not easily visible, like sidewalks. To overcome this limitation, many smart wheelchairs combine data from multiple sensors to locate obstacles – often through bump detection – which is especially helpful in non-paved areas.