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Flex Array

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Abstract

According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, NSCISC, approximately 117,500 individuals in the U.S. are spinal cord injured and are considered to have tetraplegia (2012). As a result, rehabilitation hospitals nationwide work diligently to fit individuals with assistive technology products specific to the end user’s need. In addition, occupational therapists have been able to identify many mobility needs the end user encounters that have not been addressed by current assistive technology drive controls (TIRR 2013). The majority of current drive controls, presented to people with tetraplegia, are switched drive controls, which do not allow the driver to operate his/her wheelchair with the 360 degrees of control that our proportional drive control allows. This paper introduces a new device called Flex Array, a proportional drive head array that has an easy user interface, reduces user fatigue, universal DB9 connector, and low profile design giving the driver a better mobility experience.

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