Wheelchair Ramp Power AssistBy Gunn, Daron; Burke, Audrey; Strike, Sophie; Bohs, Larry; NSF 2007 Engineering Senior Design Projects to Aid Persons With Disabilities, pp. 56-57
Publication Date: 2010
Description of a power assist device that enables a wheelchair user to ascend a ramp with less effort. Developed at the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Duke University for a manual wheelchair user, the device pulls the client up the ramp leading to her home via a cable attached temporarily to her wheelchair. The Wheelchair Ramp Power Assist uses a 12-volt battery powered winch with 40-foot steel cable that ends with a large spring hook. A second piece of steel cable with spring hooks attach to each end loops through this hook. The client attaches her chair to the system by fastening the hooks to each armrest on her chair. The client controls the winch using a wireless remote system which has two buttons, one for winding and one for unwinding the cable. The remote buttons also function as a safety mechanism, as they must continually be pressed to operate the winch. An industrial single pull stop switch connected to a cable that runs the length of the ramp provides an additional safety mechanism. The client reported finding the Ramp Assist particularly useful in winter, when ice and snow covering the ramp provided no traction for the wheelchair tires.
Published by: Creative Learning Press, Inc. (Website:http://www.creativelearningpress.com)
Link to text: http://nsf-pad.bme.uconn.edu/2007/Chapter7,%20Duke%20University.pdf