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Proximity Sensing Textile as a Wearable Aid to Orientation and Mobility for Individuals with Visual Impairment

Principal researcher

Name: Michael L. Burns

Contact details: Science, Math & Engineering, Inc., 45 Manning Road, Billerica, MA  01821-3934, United States of America.
Tel: +1 978 663 9500; Fax: +1 978 663 4918
Email: burns@aerodyne.com


Project details

Start date: 01/10/2006
End date: 01/10/2008

Description: This project continues development of Proximity Sensing Textile as a wearable, electronic travel mobility aid that preserves the comfort, appearance, and dignity of everyday apparel. Proximity Sensing Textile is a smart textile array of infrared sensors embedded in conventional clothing that detects and reports hazards such as drop-offs, overhangs, and jutting objects to the wearer. The clothing supplies hazard avoidance cues to the wearer that complement orientation, mobility, and navigation information accessible to the wearer from wayfinding systems, be they infrared, GPS, or radio technology based. In Phase II, a textile results that actively interrogates the immediate environment of the wearer for hazards and reports them through cues designed into the clothing. Commercial applications exist for individuals with mobility impairments who have difficulty scanning the physical environment because of range of motion limitations such as people with cerebral palsy, spinal cord injury, or spina bifida, among other disabilities.

Other organisations involved in this project

Last updated: 20/03/2010