Toy RetrieverBy Christopher, Punita; Ramshesh, Venkat; Tannan, Vinay; RESNA 26th International Annual Conference 2003,
Publication Date: 2003
Paper discusses the design and development of a device for a boy with a C-7 and T-1 spinal cord injury to enable him to independently fetch toys off of the floor from his wheelchair. A “scooper and blocker” design was created, which attaches to the boy’s wheelchair and can be raised or lowered to the ground via switch control. This allows the client to position the device so that the desired toy is located between the scooper and the blocker. As the client pushes his wheelchair forward, the scooper moves under the toy and the blocker stays in place. The scooper has wheels so that it slides easily, while the blocker has a sticky, diamond mesh lining on its bottom, which causes it to adhere to the floor. Both the scooper and the blocker are made of strong, lightweight Lexan. A motorized automobile antenna mechanism was used to raise the scooper and blocker unit from the ground. Following a preliminary evaluation, the authors contend that the device can be lowered and raised, and in many situations, it can scoop a toy as desired. The device did not, however, work consistently with all toys on all surfaces. The authors suggest that a more sturdy attachment to the wheelchair would add to stability, and that a stronger motor would help when lifting heavier toys. The prototype device was designed by researchers at the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Published by: Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA) (Website:http://www.resna.org)