Faculty Advisor

Ault, Holly Keyes

Faculty Advisor

Hoffman, Allen H.

Abstract

Many paraplegics want to travel safely over a variety of terrain but are inhibited by their wheelchair. This project developed an all-purpose wheelchair that maintained standardized dimensions for indoor operation, and competes with all-terrain wheelchairs outdoors. Outdoors, the device uses a linkage mechanism to move the user’s center of gravity forward and down, improving stability. The prototype also has drive levers to improve the user’s mechanical advantage for propulsion. Field tests showed the prototype is capable of extending the user’s range on steeper slopes, mud, and roots. The standard wheelchair had difficulties with traction and tipping. Survey results indicate 85% of people preferred the prototype to a standard wheelchair regarding the advantages it provided in each test.

Publisher

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2016

Major

Mechanical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project

Accessibility

Unrestricted

Advisor Department

Mechanical Engineering

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