Tongue Drive System for Assistive Control; Comparing Perceptions of Disability Through a Characterization of Attitudes Towards Assistive Technology

Batra, Dhruv, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Barnes, Adam, EN-Elec & Comp Engr Dept, University of Virginia
Neeley, Kathryn, EN-Engineering and Society, University of Virginia

The tongue drive system is a wearable assistive device that will help individuals with spinal cord injuries or any neuromuscular diseases, such as quadriplegics, better navigate the world by allowing them to use their tongue to control an electric wheelchair. It does this in a manner that is cheaper and more intuitive than existing alternatives. This head-worn device is equipped with hall effect sensors to track the fluctuation of magnetic fields due to a magnet attached to the user’s tongue. Using data from the sensors, an MSP432 microcontroller performs data processing to determine the tongue’s position and transforms that into control data that can be outputted to a wheelchair. Due to limited time and resources, this project does not use a physical electric wheelchair; instead, it sends the control data to a virtual wheelchair in a computer simulation.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
tongue drive system, tongue control, assistive device, quadriplegia, tetraplegia, disability, perceptions on disability, attitudes towards technology
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