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Development, commercialization and deployment of complete mobility solution (indoor & outdoor) for people with locomotor disability

Primary Information

Domain

Healthcare

Project No.

6803

Sanction and Project Initiation

Sanction No: F.No.3-18/2015-T.S.-I (Vol.III)

Sanction Date: 20/01/2017

Project Initiation date:02/02/2017

Project Duration: 24

Partner Ministry/Agency/Industry

Indian Council of Medical Research

 

Role of partner:1) Funding 2) Providing inputs through review

 

Support from partner:1) Partial Funding - second year's installment is still due

Principal Investigator

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Dr. Sujatha Srinivasan
Indian Institute of Technology, IIT-Madras

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Host Institute

Co-PIs

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Vivek Sarda
Indian Institute of Technology, Madras

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Swostik Sourav Dash
Indian Institute of Technology, Madras

 

Scope and Objectives

The objective of the project is to improve the quality of life of people with locomotor disability by providing them independent mobility both indoors and outdoors. This will be achieved by Product Development Development of a novel mobility device which is usable on uneven terrain, usable indoors, affordable and easily repairable. Product Deployment Production and dissemination of the product to end users.

Deliverables

The project's aim is to translate the proof of concept into a product, followed by commercialization. The project deliverables will be as follows A. Design and development of the products which are motorized and manual add-ons B. Quality certification of the product C. Establishing product specific manufacturing setup e.g. dies, moulds, jigs, fixtures D. Dissemination i.e. 20 units each of the manual and motorized version of the product The support from Imprint will enable the concept to be commercialized. Post the project duration as defined under Imprint, the product will be manufactured and disseminated by the industry partner.

 

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Videos

Confidential as of now. Will be available upon launch of the products.

Scientific Output

Extensive user-centric design has been employed in the development of these devices. The devices have been tested to ISO 7176 standard for wheelchairs. Currently biomechanical studies are ongoing at the TTK Center for R2D2, IIT Madras to determine ease of propulsion of the wheelchair. Further studies will include pressure measurements to improve cushion design, and eventually musculoskeletal modeling of wheelchair propulsion. Patent has been filed for the attachment mechanism, anti-tipping mechanism. Design registration has been done for the overall looks of the product.

 

Results and outcome till date

A. PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT Product development of wheelchair and motorized clip on unit is complete. 1. The wheelchair is an efficient mode of mobility indoors. 2. The combined unit is usable outdoors on uneven terrain. 3. The prototypes have been tested by over 250 wheelchair user. 4. The prototypes have been tested mechanically for structural strength as per ISO 7176 standard (internally). 5. The price of the combined unit is 5 to 6 times lesser as compared to comparable products available globally. 6. The product has been designed for easy maintenance. B. PRODUCT DEPLOYMENT Product deployment is currently under progress. 1. Fabrication of welding fixtures for large scale production is complete. 2. Pilot batch of 24 units of wheelchairs has been produced, of which 20 are in use by users. 3. Pilot batch of 10 units of motorized clip-on is under production. 4. Work towards first batch of large scale production and dissemination (100 Units) is under progress.

 

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Societal benefit and impact anticipated

Improper posture inflicted by one-size-fits-all wheelchairs acutely compromises quality of life. Fatigue, resultant shoulder/back pain can be lasting. The wheelchair will eliminate these avoidable damages, promote good health, increase accessibility and make wheelchair use enjoyable. These will result in an active lifestyle and a better attitude towards life. The clip-on devices for outdoor mobility will empower wheelchair users to go out more and explore the world independently without fear. They can become more employable with more work opportunities. Macro socio-economic impact of wheelchair users (potential 13 Million in India) embracing these products will be game-changing.

Next steps

1. Pilot batch production (10 Units) of motorized clip-on is under progress. 2. Large scale production (100 Units) of wheelchairs is under progress

Publications and reports

Design of an Affordable Outdoor Add-on to a Manual Wheelchair for Developing Countries, presented at the 2016 Summer Biomechanics, Bioengineering and Biotransport Conference (SB3C2016) held at National Harbor, MD, June 29-July 2nd, 2016 (participation and travel funded through other means than IMPRINT).

Patents

Safe Clip-On attachment to convert wheelchair into an outdoor vehicle, Provisional Indian patent application no. 201841027569 dated 23-07-2018 (IIT Madras and NeoMotion Assistive Solutions Pvt. Ltd) Design Registration for Wheelchair in class 12-12 files on 24.7.2018 under no. 307976

Scholars and Project Staff

2 Project Officers, 1 Project Associate and 4 Project Technicians are employed on the project. However, more human resources are needed and are being supplemented by staff from the TTK Center for R2D2, IIT Madras and staff employed by the startup, NeoMotion.

Challenges faced

We have exceeded the budget for the development since we needed to develop an additional product - the customizable, robust wheelchair for the add-ons to be effective. In addition, ICMR, the partner agency has not released their second year funds despite repeated requests. We have nearly utilized all the funds and require more support for production tooling, completing the development of the manual add-on, and awareness creation among users.

Other information

More funding is required by the startup for successful commercialization, specifically, for additional production tooling, development of the manual add-on and dissemination (education and awareness creation) of the products.

Financial Information

  • Total sanction: Rs. 18574000

  • Amount received: Rs. 15608522

  • Amount utilised for Equipment: Rs. 2095122

  • Amount utilised for Manpower: Rs. 3141960

  • Amount utilised for Consumables: Rs. 4157930

  • Amount utilised for Contingency: Rs. 1014891

  • Amount utilised for Travel: Rs. 733834

  • Amount utilised for Other Expenses: 2006861

  • Amount utilised for Overheads: Rs. 3058732

Equipment and facilities

 

Welding Fixtures