Product Motivation

Hello! The mission of the Intelligent Cane is simple: bring technology to canes. Through the use of technology we hope to aid in fall prevention for individuals who struggle with balance.

Project Outline

The Intelligent Cane is currently in the early prototyping stage. So far, multiple functional prototypes have been developed and tested. Testing is currently on-going at Rancho Los Amigos, a local rehabilitation center.

Design

The major design objective is to be simple and low cost. By using a simple yet incredibly effective design, our hope is to be as accessible as possible to the community.

Development

As our prototype continues through development, we anticipate that our module will become much smaller. Testing will continue with each iterative design.

Progress Outline

Initial Vision

The initial vision of the project was to create a powered cane to provide active stabilization to users. The force was going to be exerted using two momentum wheels to achieve 2-dimensional actuation. While this concept in theory would be incredibly useful towards fall prevention, there are many drawbacks that prevented this direction. First, there was the issue of power consumption. Since the design required a motor, a large battery would also be required. Mounting and transporting a battery adds space, weight, and cost. While space and weight could be reduced through careful mechanical design, ultimately the cost would be much larger than we were willing to go. We wanted to keep our product low cost so that it would be obtainable for as many users as possible.

Current Stage

Currently, we are building multiple testable prototypes and testing them with as many patients and physical therapists as possible. So far, we have recieved very positive feedback that patients feel more confident when walking with the intelligent cane module. The module has successfully proven to detect and notify the user when the cane is unstable. Once the IP of the device is protected, more information will be given about the device.