Improving human-machine interaction for a powered wheelchair driver by using variable-switches and sensors that reduce wheelchair-veer

David Sanders, Martin Langner, Nils Bausch, Ya Huang, Sergey Andreyevich Khaustov, Sarinova Simandjuntak

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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The integration of proportional switches for human-computer interaction and sensors with veer correction systems are presented. The transducers and sensors improve control, assist wheelchair drivers and reduced wheelchair veer, especially on slopes. The systems also reduce effort. The proportional switches are particularly useful for disabled people who do not have enough skill to use a joystick, or who lack sufficient hand-grasp and release ability, or who have movement disorders. The new systems were tested using laboratory test rigs. The test rigs were reused later to teach human users. A rolling road was then built to test the systems before user trials were undertaken. The angle of the wheelchair casters provided feedback and that feedback was used to reduce drift. A new electronic system matched the caster angles to the driver input. A case study is described. Results are presented, and they suggest there are advantages to using variable rather than digital or binary switches. The veer correction system can assist when a user is traversing a slope. The transducers and systems have been tested at Chailey heritage and proved to be useful in assisting powered-wheelchair users. The proportional switches isolate the gross motor functions and filter out uncontrolled movement. The sensor system helps users to steer on uneven or sloping ground. The transducers also provide more control during turning and can reduce the turn radius as well as lowering frustration and conserving energy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of SAI Intelligent Systems Conference
Subtitle of host publicationIntelliSys 2019: Intelligent Systems and Applications
EditorsYaxin BI, Rahul Bhatia, Supriya Kapoor
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-29513-4
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-29512-7
Publication statusPublished - 24 Aug 2019
EventIEEE SAI Intelligent Systems Conference 2019 - London, United Kingdom
Duration: 5 Sept 20196 Sept 2019

Publication series

NameAdvances in Intelligent Systems and Computing
ISSN (Print)2194-5357
ISSN (Electronic)2194-5365


ConferenceIEEE SAI Intelligent Systems Conference 2019
Abbreviated titleIntelliSys 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • wheelchair
  • driver
  • switches
  • sensors
  • veer
  • assistive
  • HCI


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