Careway's actuated walker uses perception and actuation to implement a pose correction algorithm to improve stability and reduce fall risk. The developed walker can perform real-time gait and pose detection of the user, as well as use that data to actively guide the user to a safer and more stable walk.
Lower Body Gait Analysis
Sensors track the user's lower body, including ankle, knee, and hip positions, and localize these points in relation to the walker in 3D space.
User Pose Correction
In existing walkers, a user needs to consciously adjust the distance between themselves and the walker. Considerable attention is required and many struggle with this, increasing their fall risk. Our algorithm allows a user to just walk, and the walker will adjust its braking to keep the user safe and stable with optimal distance and resistance.
Incline Support
Sensors detect if the walker is going uphill or downhill and compensate for the walker’s weight uphill or provide automatic braking going downhill.
Sitting + Standing
During standing, walk-to-sit and sit-to-walk transitions, the walker brakes automatically in response to the users weight, in case the user forgets to manually lock.
Prototype - Mark II
After the first prototype validated the functionality of the motor braking system, the second prototype integrated sensors. The first three prototypes were built entirely in-house with a Tormach CNC mill.
Prototype - Mark III
The third prototype integrated an inline braking system, allowing both the user and a servo motor to control a disk brake. It also integrated the batteries into the chassis, reducing the size and bulk of the seat.
Prototype - Mark IV
The fourth prototype dramatically altered the walker structure with vertical collapsing stretchers, shifting electronics into the chassis legs. Mark IV was fabricated with outsourced waterjet cutting. Four-wheel drive was added, allowing for firmer control in breaking. The sensor system's field of vision was substantially widened.
Careway Team
Jung Yeop Steve Kim – Hardware Systems
McKenna Cisler – Software Systems
Hannah Skye Dunnigan – Machining and Design
Seojin Jang – Software Systems
Matthew Berg – Software Systems
Howon Lee – Manufacturing and Testing
Natalie Davoodi – User Testing Coordinator
Olivia McKnight – Walker Safety Metric / Feature Design
Athena Feng – Stakeholder Analysis / Feature Design
George Konidaris, Stefanie Tellex, Stefan Gravenstein, Rosa Baier, Linda Resnik – Faculty Advisors

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