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Design and fabrication of a statically stable stair‐climbing robotic wheelchair

Chun‐Ta Chen (Department of Mechanical and Automation Engineering, Da‐Yeh University, Chang‐Hua, Taiwan)
Hoang‐Vuong Pham (Department of Mechanical and Automation Engineering, Da‐Yeh University, Chang‐Hua, Taiwan)

Industrial Robot

ISSN: 0143-991x

Article publication date: 16 October 2009

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present the mechanical design and stability analysis of a new stair‐climbing robotic wheelchair.

Design/methodology/approach

A prototype stair‐climbing robotic wheelchair is constructed comprising a pair of rotational multi‐limbed structures pivotally mounted on opposite sides of a support base. The short arm, long arm, and triangular support structures within each rotational multi‐limbed structure rotate under the actuating effects of epicyclical gear trains.

Findings

The robotic wheelchair ascends and descends stairs in a statically stable manner and has an efficient planar navigation capability.

Research limitations/implications

In its current state of development, the robotic wheelchair is controlled and powered remotely via umbilical cords rather than an onboard processor and power supply.

Practical implications

The robotic wheelchair provides an effective solution for enhancing the mobility of the elderly and disabled.

Originality/value

The rotational multi‐limbed mechanisms are developed to ensure the stability of the sitting base at all stages of the stair navigation maneuver without the need for additional servo‐mechanism. The proposed robotic wheelchair shows the simplification of the associated operation process.

Keywords

Citation

Chen, C. and Pham, H. (2009), "Design and fabrication of a statically stable stair‐climbing robotic wheelchair", Industrial Robot, Vol. 36 No. 6, pp. 562-569. https://doi.org/10.1108/01439910910994632

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited