When I Saw This Wheelchair, I Can’t Help Myself But Cry!

It all started when a group of 10 students from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) and Zurich University of the Arts came up with a project to meet the requirements on their final years. But what these future engineers and industrial designers didn’t know is that their final-year student project will certainly change the lives of many disabled people.

Called “Scalevo”, this is not your ordinary electric wheelchair sold on many high-end stores and medical outlets. While it might look a bit odd, the Scalevo has one huge secret that will surely wow everyone, it is the ability to climb stairs safely! Yes, this two-wheeled motorized vehicle is a stair climbing wheelchair that can ascend and descend stairs with 17 to 34 degrees slope!

Looking at Scalevo, one will notice that it looks like a hybrid between a wheelchair and a Segway. Well, it really is because this stair climbing wheelchair uses the same technology as with Segway called the gyroscope. In balance mode, the Scalevo can easily rotate and change directions quickly. And on flat surfaces, it can move at the rate of 10 kilometers per hour.

Unfortunately, Scalevo is not yet available in the market. But the group of students headed by Dr. Roland Siegwart and Dr. Roland Haas are planning to start a Kickstarter campaign to make this technology available to everyone.

 

Check out this video and see Scalevo in pure action!

Video from: YouTube

If you’re wondering how this amazing wheelchair can climb stairs, the secret lies on the two treaded tracks attached on the bottom part of the vehicle that can mount one stair per second. Additionally, everything on this stair climbing wheelchair is automatic. From turning around, controlling of velocity, leveling of the chair, it is even equipped with a back facing camera!

Scalevo is not the first stair climbing wheelchair ever invented. Back in 2009 Johnson & Johnson created almost the same wheelchair called the iBot. However, due to price issues the device made a very little success.

H/T to: iflscience

Isn’t this a true heaven-sent to every disabled people in this whole wide world? Kudos to the team and to their mentors! What a great way to combine equality and technology in one practical device! What can you say about the Scalevo?