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Mobility

— Architecture

"Shareway" presents a vision of transport infrastructure in 2030

American-based studio Höweler + Yoon Architecture has developed an intriguing concept for modern urban infrastructure between Boston and Washington called "Boswash." Central to the design of this imagined mega-region is the firm's "Shareway" design – a bundled transport concept that seeks to redress the nightmare of the urban commute by connecting public and individual transport to a single artery along the 450 mile (724 km) route of the existing Interstate 95. Read More
— Robotics

Vanderbilt University steps into the exoskeleton market

For people who are unable to walk under their own power, exoskeletons offer what is perhaps the next-best thing. Essentially “wearable robots,” the devices not only let their users stand, but they also move their legs for them, allowing them to walk. While groups such as Berkeley Bionics, NASA, Rex Bionics, and ReWalk are all working on systems, Nashville’s Vanderbilt University has just announced the development of its own exoskeleton. It is claimed to offer some important advantages over its competitors. Read More
— Good Thinking

Long-distance collaborators create inexpensive prosthetic finger

When South African craftsman Richard Van As lost most of the fingers from his right hand in an industrial accident, he decided to try and create a prosthetic finger to regain some of his lost mobility. In order to bring this about, Richard recruited the help of Washington State native Ivan Owen, after being impressed with the latter's mechanical hand prop which he had posted on YouTube. The result could be a boon to amputees everywhere. Read More
— Health & Wellbeing

Honda uses Asimo technology to get the elderly on their feet

We've been following Honda’s Stride Management Assist since its first unveiling in 2008, to the introduction of its sturdier cousin into the workplace and then its U.S. tour in 2009. Now the ASMIO spin off is scheduled to undergo field tests by Japan's National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology (NCGG). The NCGG will test 40 units of the device on people with limited walking ability at the Elder Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Center at Resora Obu Shopping Terrace in Obu, Japan. Read More
— Automotive

Kenguru, the first drive-from-wheelchair EV, enters production

Though its undoubtedly true to say that mobility vehicles designed for wheelchair access exist, like AM General's MV-1, these generally relegate the wheelchair user to backseat passenger. Vehicles that do allow a wheelchair behind the controls are expensive made-to-order conversions of people carriers and mini-buses. The Kenguru is about as far from a people carrier as it's possible to get, being a small nimble electric vehicle, but one designed specifically for quick, easy access by, and driving from, a wheelchair. Its makers claim it is the first drive-from-wheelchair electric car. Read More
— Urban Transport

BMW unveils i Pedelec bicycle concept

BMW has further strengthened its commitment to an electric mobility future by announcing the opening of its first i Store on July 25. To celebrate the event, the German auto giant has developed a new folding pedal-electric bike called the i Pedelec. Like the Voltitude, the new bike can be rolled along when folded to make getting on and off trains or buses, or in and out of elevators, a little less troublesome, and benefits from a geared electric hub motor, high performance batteries and disc braking at the front and rear. BMW also says that two folded i Pedelec bikes can be comfortably squeezed into the trunk space of its forthcoming i3 EV, and that their batteries can be charged while in there. Read More
— Science

Paralyzed rats regain mobility with a combination of robotics and chemical stimulation

Researchers working at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology have successfully made use of electrical and chemical stimulation techniques to excite neurons in the lower spinal cord of previously paralyzed rats, enabling the subject rodents to walk and even run when suspended by a vest which provides balance and restricts movement to the hind legs only. Read More
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