Thursday, January 4, 2007
IBOT vs Other Power Chairs
I don't have much time, so I copied this from
The iBOT has a number of features distinguishing
it from most powered wheelchairs:
While the iBOT has four powered wheels (in
addition to two small casters used on smooth
surfaces), it is capable of balancing on a single
pair of wheels. This mode of operation also
raises the user of the wheelchair so that their
eyes are at the same approximate level as
By rotating its two sets of powered wheels about
each other, the iBOT is capable of "walking" up
and down stairs without requiring assistance.
During independent stair climbing, the user
requires a sturdy handrail and a strong grip.
With an assistant, neither a handrail, nor a
strong grip is required.
The iBOT is capable of tethered remote control
operation (useful for loading device up steep ramps
into vehicles, or "parking" against a wall after rider
gets into bed).
A special software package called iBALANCE receives
data via various sensors and gyroscopes, allowing the
iBOT to maintain balance during certain maneuvers.
For example during curb climbing the seat remains
level while parts of the chassis tilt to climb the curb.
It allows the user to rise from a sitting level to approx.
6 ft. tall (measured from the ground to the top of the
head, and depending on the size of the occupant). It
does this by raising one pair of wheels above the other
to elevate the chassis, while a separate actuator slightly
raises the seat further. In this configuration the device
is on two wheels, and the gyroscope acts as the iBOT’s
equilibrium to keep itself stable, balancing much like
the Segway scooter. The user may also travel in this
It can climb and descend curbs ranging from 0.1 in. To
5.0 inches, according to manufacturer's specifications.
Further, performance envelope determined by rider's
technique and risk tolerance.
It is capable of traveling on and through a large variety
of terrain and weather.