Next Article in Journal
Device-Free Localization via an Extreme Learning Machine with Parameterized Geometrical Feature Extraction
Previous Article in Journal
Intelligent Medical Garments with Graphene-Functionalized Smart-Cloth ECG Sensors
Article Menu
Issue 4 (April) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Sensors 2017, 17(4), 880; doi:10.3390/s17040880

A New Input Device for Spastics Based on Strain Gauge

Institute of Health Care Engineering with European Testing and Certification Body of Medical Devices, Graz University of Technology, Stremayrgasse 16/II, 8010 Graz, Austria
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 13 February 2017 / Revised: 10 April 2017 / Accepted: 15 April 2017 / Published: 17 April 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Sensors)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [5332 KB, uploaded 18 April 2017]   |  

Abstract

This article presents a new sensor for use by people with spastic disorders and similar conditions and enables them to steer and control medical devices such as electric powered wheelchairs. As spastic patients often suffer from cramping of their extremities, which can then no longer be controlled, using a standard joystick while operating a powered wheelchair can lead to dangerous situations. To prevent this, we designed a sensor based on strain gauges, which is shaped like a flat disc that can be operated using any body part. By shifting weight along the x- and y-axis, the disc tilts in all directions thereby generating proportionate output signals. The disc can also be pressed downward (z-axis), for example, to open a wheelchair’s menu. Thanks to the sensor’s flat disc-like construction and the option of mounting it into a control panel, users are not in danger of becoming stuck on the disc during spastic episodes. In the event of a spasm, body parts simply slide over the disc reducing risk of unintended actions. The sensor is adaptive and adjustable enabling it to fit a user’s range of strength and motion at any time. It was developed to ensure users can operate sensitive systems safely. View Full-Text
Keywords: tactile sensors; assistive technologies; power wheelchair; medical systems; robotic; joystick; strain-gauge; spastic; spasticity tactile sensors; assistive technologies; power wheelchair; medical systems; robotic; joystick; strain-gauge; spastic; spasticity
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Buchhold, N.; Baumgartner, C. A New Input Device for Spastics Based on Strain Gauge. Sensors 2017, 17, 880.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Sensors EISSN 1424-8220 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top