engineering senior projects - biomedical engineering 09

Biomedical Engineering Senior Projects 2009


Wheelchair Push Warmer


Ali Altahif
Abhishek Bhatia   
Youssef Naim 

Faculty Advisor
Ken Cook


Project Description

To propel themselves effectively, wheelchair users must be able to firmly grip the pushing rims mounted to the wheels. This often precludes the wearing of gloves. Therefore, when moving about outdoors in cooler temperatures, users frequently suffer the discomfort of cold hands, especially in extreme climates. To alleviate this problem, the team developed an innovative design for warming the pushing rims: a generator whose input shaft is connected to the wheels via a planetary gear set. The generator spins at a specified ratio in relation to the wheels and produces sufficient electrical power to heat a resistive wire inside the pushing rim and distribute the transfer of heat uniformly. The design includes an electrical insulator between the rim and the resistive wire to prevent electrical shorts.