Changes in inertia and effect on turning effort across different wheelchair configurations
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Changes in inertia and effect on turning effort across different wheelchair configurations. Jayme J. Caspall, MS; Erin Seligsohn; Phuc V. Dao, MS; Stephen Sprigle, PhD, PT. Aim

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Changes in inertia and effect on turning effort across different wheelchair configurations

Changes in inertia and effect on turning effort across different wheelchair configurations

Jayme J. Caspall, MS; Erin Seligsohn; Phuc V. Dao, MS; Stephen Sprigle, PhD, PT


  • Aim different wheelchair configurations

    • Measure changes in inertial reactance or wheelchair inertia due to configuration changes in adjustable manual wheelchairs.

    • Relate inertial changes to differences in torque required to overcome caster scrub and accelerate wheelchairs during turning.

  • Relevance

    • When executing turning maneuvers, manual wheelchair users must overcome rotational inertia of wheelchair system.


Method
Method different wheelchair configurations

  • Measured inertias of various configurations of ultralightweight wheelchair.

  • Compared:

    • Adjustments in axle position.

    • Changes in wheel and tire type.

    • Addition of several accessories.


Results
Results different wheelchair configurations

  • Configuration with highest rotational inertia (solid tires, mag wheels with rearward axle) exceeded configuration with lowest (pneumatic tires, spoke wheels with forward axle) by 28%.

  • Greater inertia requires increased torque to accelerate wheelchair during turning.

  • At representative maximum acceleration, reactive torque was 11.7 to 15.0 N-m across wheelchair configurations.

    • At higher accelerations, torques exceeded that required to overcome caster scrub during turning.


Conclusion
Conclusion different wheelchair configurations

  • Results indicate that:

    • Wheelchair’s rotational inertia can significantly influence torque required during turning.

    • This influence will affect active users who turn at high speeds.

  • Categorizing wheelchairs using both mass and rotational inertia would better represent differences in effort during wheelchair maneuvers.


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