Start-up financing is provided by:
Research Group SilverMobility - Near-field mobility concepts for the age group 50+ (No. 2011FGR0127), funded by the Freistaat Thüringen and the Thüringer Aufbaubank with co-financing from the European Social Fund.
Currently: Not funded
Duration: Since 2012
Apr 2013 - Apr 2014 "Elimination of the pushing and braking effort of a rollator
May 2014 - April 2015 "Further development of a system to eliminate the pushing and braking effort of walkers".
Jan 2016 - Dec 2016 "Further development of a system to facilitate the carrying of rollators with a focus on holistic design and user-friendliness".
Rollators are one of the most widespread systems of mobility aids currently available. Their core function can be compared both to a mobile railing and a mobile seat. They are as practical as they are light and easy to handle. Nevertheless, carrying a rollator can be a considerable burden for a person with limited mobility, which is particularly noticeable in a loaded state uphill or downhill, as it requires big force when pushing and braking. This undesirable additional load caused by the mass of the rollator can be significantly reduced by integrating an external power support on the drive side as well as a braking system, controlled by appropriate grip units to detect the user's request.
The feasibility of such a system, especially with regard to operation, was basically proven by means of an experimental setup. The special requirements of the user group (sensoric and motoric as well as cognitive abilities that deteriorate with age) and safety aspects in focus, it was possible to determine suggestions for a suitable man-machine interaction as well as an adapted response behaviour within the framework of test drives. Due to the experimental character of the overall system, it is currently not yet possible to carry out further test drives for testing and improvement, mainly involving potential users.
At present, special attention is being paid to the transfer of the system to "suitability for everyday use", with work being carried out both in the area of control engineering and in the field of "function and design". The law on medical products (MPG) is one of the guidelines for this.