Clarkson develops hybrid cane/walker for disabled, design takes second in competition
Monday, July 16, 2012 - 2:12 pm

The second-place winning team from Clarkson is, from left, Prof. Laurel Kuxhaus, Tom Burns, and Prof. Kevin Fite with the walker/cane device.

POTSDAM -- An integrated design team from the Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering at Clarkson University won second place in the second annual Undergraduate Design Project Competition in Rehabilitation and Assistive Devices for their project “Design of a Multi-Function Walker/Cane for Enhanced Assistive Function.”

This marks the second consecutive year in which a team from Clarkson has placed second in the competition.

The main objective of the design effort was to create a multipurpose assistive device that can be easily transformed between a cane and walker, depending upon the specific needs of its user.

The device allows, for instance, maneuvering within narrow passageways impassable with conventional walkers.

The prototype was developed in collaboration with faculty in Clarkson’s Department of Physical Therapy, with the objective of addressing a need in ambulatory assistive technology.

As part of being selected as a finalist, the team received a monetary award from the ASME Bioengineering Division used for prototype development and to defray the costs of traveling to the conference.