日本研究人员开发更舒适的舌头遥控轮椅

日本一组研究人员开发了一套电子轮椅,用户可以通过舌头的一系列动作来对轮椅进行操作。这项研究团队是由日本岩手大学机械工程项目负责人 Makoto Sasaki 所带领,Sasaki 教授解释道,这款电子轮椅将会在用户的下巴上附着一片硅胶片感应器,通过生物电信息来判断用户舌头的转动方向从而获得行为指令。与之前需要把传感器放入口中的电子轮椅产品相比,新开发的这款产品将会更干净、更舒适。

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Sasaki 进一步解释:“对于多数有脊髓损伤的人们来说,或许他们没有办法正常挥动手脚,但是他们可以像正常人一样移动他们的舌头。”这款电子轮椅通过脸部肌肉产生的微弱生物电讯号,再由连接下巴上的电极硅胶片来向计算机发送信号,当舌头沿着某个方向移动时,计算机能识别信号并指示轮椅沿着舌头移动的方向移动。

研究组将会在下一步进行道路测试,并试图缩短舌头运动与轮椅运动之间的时间延迟。Sasaki 说:“我们的计划是尽可能地把这款电子轮椅商业化,以帮助残疾人士在生活中获得更大的便利。”

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2017/06/05/national/science-health/japan-researchers-create-comfortable-tongue-operated-wheelchair/#.WTX1A2J96po

Japan researchers create more comfortable tongue-operated wheelchair

KYODO

A group of researchers has developed an electronic wheelchair that users can operate with their tongue using a silicone sheet attached to the chin.

The invention is cleaner and more comfortable than previously developed models, as it does not require a device to be placed inside the user’s mouth, according to project leader Makoto Sasaki, an assistant professor in the department of mechanical engineering at Iwate University.

“There are many people who can move their tongues despite having spinal cord damage that makes them unable to move their hands and feet. I want to commercialize the wheelchair to assist the lives of severely disabled people,” Sasaki said.

The wheelchair utilizes faint electric signals generated by moving suprahyoid muscles, which are activated in opening the mouth and swallowing food.

The user attaches to his or her jaw a silicone sheet with multiple electrodes that send signals to a computer. When the tongue moves in a certain direction, such as “right” or “front,” the computer recognizes the signals and instructs the wheelchair to move in the direction indicated.

According to Sasaki, past attempts to create tongue-operated wheelchairs ran into problems with hygiene and comfort, as they required users to place parts inside their mouths.

The research group is planning to conduct road tests with people with disabilities as they seek to shorten the time lag between tongue motions and the wheelchair’s movement.


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