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FIBO. Assistive Technology (AT) for Disabled/Elderly People. Djitt Laowattana, PhD Institute of Fi eld Ro bo tics King Mongkut’s Intitute of Technology Thonburi. Assistive Technology (AT). - Technology/Devices to Enhance capability of seniors/elderly and handicaps “Less Dependence”

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Assistive Technology (AT) for Disabled/Elderly People

Djitt Laowattana, PhDInstitute of Field Robotics King Mongkut’s Intitute of Technology Thonburi

Assistive technology at
Assistive Technology (AT)

- Technology/Devices to Enhance capability ofseniors/elderly and handicaps “Less Dependence”

- Eliminate possible difficulty to performnecessary activities

- Resulting motion may not resemble to normal humans

Types of at
Types ofAT

“National Classification System for Assistive Technology Devices and Services” by TheNational Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, USA

1. Architectural Elements

2. Sensory Elements

3. Computers

4. Controls

5. Independent Living

6. Mobility

7. Orthotics/Prosthetics

8. Recreation/Leisure/Sports

9. Modified Furniture/Furnishings

10. Services

***In reality, ATs appear in many forms combined***

1 architectural elements
1. Architectural Elements

  • Intelligent Mechanism for opening/closing doorsbased on speech and light beam technology

  • Modification of utilities i.e. baht room, stairs, inclination to comfort the elderly

2 sensory elements
2. Sensory Elements

  • Vision Aids

    • Haptics System, representing human eyes forestimating exact areas

    • Alphabet to sound

    • Image amplification


Feedbackof Visual Scene

(edge, person, door,…)

Extraction of Visual Scene

2 sensory elements1
2. Sensory Elements

  • Hearing Aids

    • Amplify environmental sounds,

      cutting unwanted noise

    • Flash light replacing door knocking

    • Word caption telephone

2 sensory elements2
2. Sensory Elements

  • Cognitive Aids

    • Keyboard with groupkeys assigned colors and location, special buttons for launching desired application

    • Text-to-audio-software

2 sensory elements3
2. Sensory Elements

  • Augmentative Communication Aids

    • Voice Generator with Text-to-Speech function

    • Combining augmented image data to support human visual system

3 computers
3. Computers

  • Hardware and Software

    • HeadMouse on top of monitor, mapping the eye motion to positions of pointers on screen

    • Braille Character Keyboard

    • Voice actuators

4 controls
4. Controls

  • Devices helpingelderly having difficulty in movingto perform some tasks

    • Sip/Puff switch by closing lips with pressure, exhale air through mouth

    • Voice Command

    • Software connecting all facility to

      a computer ex. BAS

5 independent living
5. Independent Living

  • อุปกรณ์ที่ช่วยให้ผู้พิการ/ผู้สูงอายุสามารถดำเนินชีวิตประจำวันได้ตามปกติ ตั้งแต่ การแต่งตัว ทำครัว เข้าห้องน้ำ ทำความสะอาด กินนอน นั่ง เดิน เช่น

    • หุ่นยนต์ทำความสะอาดบ้าน

    • แปรงสีฟันไฟฟ้า

    • Sensor สำหรับฝักบัวและชักโครกอัตโนมัติ

    • อุปกรณ์ช่วยป้อนอาหาร

6 mobility
6. Mobility

  • Motion/Mobile Facilitator

    • Walking Aids

    • Manual, Electric Mobile Chairs

    • Supporting Bars

7 orthotics prosthetics
7. Orthotics/Prosthetics

  • For amputees

Bionic hand controlled by nerve signal

Variable Damp Artificial Leg by FIBO

Exoskeleton supporting weak muscle , useful for rehabilitation

8 recreation leisure sports
8. Recreation/Leisure/Sports

  • Enhancing ability in performing recreation activities as normal life

    • Special Prosthetics for exercising

    • Software for synthesizing sounds for music performance

9 modified furniture furnishings
9. Modified Furniture/Furnishings

  • Focusing on safety and ergonomics

    • Adjustable level bed, easing get in and out

    • Standing suporter

10 services
10. Services

  • Make them less dependence on us

    • Public Rest Room, Crossroad, Telephone Access,

Smart home technology
Smart Home Technology

  • Integrate all AT to homes tailored for elderly and handicaps


Remote monitoring
Remote Monitoring

  • Internet with local sensors connecting one hospital to many smart homes for monitoring their health

  • Tele-operation robot, serving elderly for food, water and medicine taking

Robotics for disabled elderly people
Robotics for Disabled/Elderly People

Various trays for various activities

Tray for food taking

Tray for teeth brushing

Tray for facial cosmatic

Robotics for disabled elderly people1
Robotics for Disabled/Elderly People

Robot for rehabilitation

Robot curing Autism

Dr. Laowattana’s research interest is primarily in fundamental areas of robotic dexterity, design for manufacturing / assembly of high precision systems. He was awarded an honor with his B.Eng. from King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT). Under the Monbusho Program, he received a certificate in Precision Mechanics and Robotics at Kyoto University. He subsequently obtained his PhD. in 1994 from Carnegie Mellon University, USA under financial support from the Fulbright Fellowship Program and the AT&T Advanced Research Program. In 1996, he also received a certificate in Management of Technology from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) USA. He holds two US patents for robotic devices. He is the founding director of the Institute of Field Robotics Development (FIBO) and the first President of Thai Robotics Society (TRS). He served as an executive board member of TOT, the largest telecom public company. Presently, he is director of Hard disk Cluster Program at National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA). His responsibility is to strengthen hard disk industry in Thailand by formulating critical collaborative networks in the areas of R&D, HRD and Supply Chain Development among professionals from 30 national universities/laboratories and four multi-national companies, producing one of the highest annual turnover of 500 billions baht