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This paper describes a driving control scheme of electric power-assisted wheelchairs for assistive driving on various large disturbance roads. The “power-assisted wheelchair” that assists the driving force by electric motors is expected to be widely used as a mobility support system for elderly people and disabled people; however, there are lots of large disturbance roads such as uphill roads and rough roads and operators need to push hand-rims with larger power load in order to obtain enough driving distance and velocity. For example, wheelchairs might move backward on uphill roads due to the driving torque shortage. Therefore, this study proposes a fuzzy-algorithm-based torque control scheme in order to realize the assistive driving on large disturbance roads. The proposed fuzzy controller has a simple structure because high-performance CPUs and controllers are difficult to be carried on practical wheelchairs. The assisted torque after the operator releases hand-rims will be adjusted so that the enough velocity is kept even on large disturbance roads. Driving experimental results and evaluation results are provided to verify the effectiveness of the proposed control system.
Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, Part C: Applications and Reviews, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:42 , Issue: 6 )
Date of Publication: Nov. 2012