Human Factors in All-Terrain Wheelchair Design for Rural Population

  • Paula Chacon-CifuentesEmail author
  • A. A. Zuleta
  • Gustavo Sevilla
  • Andres Valencia-Escobar
  • Esteban Correa-Bedoya
  • Felix Echeverria-Echeverria
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 972)


Considering the geography, the public infrastructure and the products available in Colombia, there was identified an insufficiency in the supply of wheelchairs appropriated for the tough conditions of rural areas. In response, an all-terrain, three-wheeled and leveraged wheelchair was designed, using the user-centered design approach. The wheelchair was adapted to the anthropometric and anatomical characteristics of its users and considered arms biomechanics for the design of leveraged driving system. In addition, it was proposed the use of magnesium alloys to reducing the weight of the wheelchair frame, which helps to reduce the effort thus contributing to the preservation of upper limbs. The wheelchair was co-designed involving potential users in the design process. The digital model suggests a weight reduction of 75% to 55% compared to commercial models and shows adequate structural behavior. Currently, a functional prototype is being manufactured, which will be subjected to technical and usability tests.


User-centered design Mobility Biomechanics Product design Assistive technology 



The authors are grateful to “Departamento Administrativo de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación (COLCIENCIAS)” of the Colombian Government (Grant 1115745-58322), “Centro de Investigación para el Desarrollo y la Innovación (CIDI)” from the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana through UPB-Innova Rad: 747B-03/17-35, Universidad de Antioquia, SENA and Universidad de Medellín.


Departamento Administrativo de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación en Colombia (COLCIENCIAS), grant 1115745-58322.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paula Chacon-Cifuentes
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  • A. A. Zuleta
    • 1
  • Gustavo Sevilla
    • 1
  • Andres Valencia-Escobar
    • 1
  • Esteban Correa-Bedoya
    • 2
  • Felix Echeverria-Echeverria
    • 3
  1. 1.Grupo de Investigación de Estudios en Diseño GED, Facultad de Diseño IndustrialUniversidad Pontificia BolivarianaMedellínColombia
  2. 2.Grupo de Investigación Materiales con Impacto – MAT&MPAC, Facultad de IngenieríasUniversidad de MedellínMedellínColombia
  3. 3.Centro de Investigación, Innovación y Desarrollo de Materiales (CIDEMAT), Facultad de IngenieríaUniversidad de Antioquia UdeAMedellínColombia

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