Regular wheelchairs may allow mobility to the physically challenged, but wheelchair users have to rely on others to reach out objects of daily use. Offering a solution, a research team from Taiwan’s National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) has come up with a robotic vehicle dubbed the “i-Transport” that helps the wheelchair users to move from a horizontal to a vertical position to extend their reach, as users can virtually get on their feet.
Generating power from a field-programmable gate array (FPGA) chip containing a Nios II multi-core processor, the electric robotic vehicle lifts users to an upright position with the support of seat and a padded harness sitting against lower back of the user. In addition, the robotic vehicle uses physiological parameters to calculate if the load or configuration, both sitting and standing, is safe for the user. Integrating a health monitoring system to track blood pressure and breathing of the user, the vehicle is indeed a windfall for immobile people.