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Category: Prototype

Interactive Delivery Cart

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---- PROTOTYPE --------- PURPOSE: To create a prototype of a delivery cart that serves as both a learning and therapeutic tool, providing a safe, customizable, and fun device from which elementary school students with disabilities can learn to assume responsibility and practice essential skills. The delivery cart is a unique therapeutic device for elementary school students with disabilities, helping to promote motor skills as well as work ethic and responsibility. It is accessible to students with a wide range of ages and physical abilities. The design is intended to be adaptable and interactive, allowing teachers and therapists to gradually add accessories as students develop their cognitive and motor skills. The main components of the Interactive Delivery Cart are a height-adjustable handle, hand brakes, dashboard for holding a communication device and task cards, color-coded bins, turn signals, a base for additional storage, tip-stoppers and wheelchair adaptation accessories. The cart is modified from a commercial shopping cart. The custom-bent handlebar adjusts in height for use by both children and adults. Knob screws on either side loosen and tighten the vertical supports to slide the handle to the desired position. Tennis grip tape allows for a comfortable grasp. Hand brakes, modified from commercial walker brakes, allow users to slow themselves down when moving on uneven surfaces or downhill. The brake handles are secured to the left and right undersides of the handlebar, and can be squeezed to engage the rubber-coated brake friction levers, which are mounted near each rear wheel. The dashboard is constructed of 0.125-inch thick acrylic and features a ledge to hold a student's communication device. A Velcro strip directly above the communication device displays task cards corresponding to the color-coded individual bins; these cards may be selected from the task card binder. The dashboard is securely supported on the back wall of the cart’s large basket. Color-coded bins, lined with colored felt, allow children to learn and distinguish between various colors in association with the delivery tasks. The bins are easily removed according to the teacher or supervisor's preference. Red vinyl covering the cart sides makes the design more aesthetically pleasing and reduces sharp corners. The base is constructed from 0.25-inch clear acrylic and is useful for additional or bulky item storage. The front edge curves upward as a ledge to prevent items stored on the base from falling. Tip-stoppers attached to the front corners of the cart frame normally ride 0.125-inch above the ground, but make contact if the cart is tipped laterally. To help reinforce the concept of left and right, a custom circuit voices a recorded message, "Turning left" or "Turning Right," as well as lighting one of two turn signals as the cart makes a turn. The circuit detects the rotation of the front center wheel with reed relays and a magnet using an ATTiny2313 microcontroller. It is powered by a 9-volt battery. Replacement cost is about $240. TITLE: Interactive Delivery Cart. JOURNAL: NSF 2010 Engineering Senior Design Projects to Aid Persons with Disabilities. REF: Chapter 7: pp.66-67. PAGES: 3 with cover. 2010. http://nsf-pad.bme.uconn.edu/2010/CHAPTER%207%20DUKE%20UNIVERSITY.pdf.

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as of: 
05/23/2013
Interactive Delivery Cart