College of Engineering
Electrical Engineering Department
BS in Electrical Engineering
The Tilt-n-Go system offers an alternative electric wheelchair control mechanism for those with mobility problems that prevent them from properly using the provided joystick controller. The majority of electric wheelchairs currently on the market are controlled by an armrest-mounted joystick. Users with tremors, arthritis or other medical conditions that result in loss of grip strength, may find the joystick interface difficult or painful to use. In the Tilt-n-Go system, the movement control system no longer receives movement commands from a joystick but instead responds to the orientation of an inertial measurement unit (IMU) mounted on a glove worn by the user. The IMU, containing a gyro, accelerometer, and microcontroller unit (MCU), outputs unique voltage signals for every distinct way a user tilts it. The IMU sends wheelchair control signals wirelessly using an XBee RF transmitter to an XBee RF receiver that outputs data to a second MCU which drives the wheelchair motors. As it stands, the Tilt-n-Go system allows for successful control of the wheelchair in all directions (forward, backward, right, left, forward-right, forward-left, backward-right, and backward-left) by tilting the hand in the predetermined manner.