While many buildings are wheelchair accessible, not every establishment features a handicap ramp, making it a challenge for those in wheelchairs to navigate around.
However, a team of 10 students from ETH Zurich and the Zurich University of the Arts put their brains and skills together to make it a bit easier for those in wheelchairs to get up and down a flight of stars.
Meet the Scalevo, a wheelchair developed with tank treads to easily travel up and down the stairs.
Using their electrical and mechanical engineering skills, the students created the chair to work like a Segway scooter, with two wheels to increase its agility for making sharp turns when on the ground.
Tank treads drop from the chair’s undercarriage, so that a person can get to their location without having to rely on a ramp. When the rubber tracks next to each wheel is released, pistons tilt the wheelchair back so that the person is stably seated as the chair gets into position to travel either up or down the stairs.
The team is currently working on increasing the chair’s step by step speed.
Scalevo is still only a prototype, but the students will use the innovative wheelchair at Cybathlon Championship 2016, a race for disabled students who use assistive devices.
Watch the Scalevo in action outside the main building of ETH Zurich in the video below.
Source: Tech Times