Personalized Mobility

  • During the course of this project, we have designed a fully autonomous package delivery vehicle. This device is capable of delivering packages from the post office and delivering them to people’s houses while also picking up packages to be delivered to the post office in almost any location.

    Problem: The delivery industry is slow, expensive, and inefficient, especially today with more and more people shopping online.  Delivery trucks cause traffic especially in urban areas, are energy intensive, raise green gas emmisions, and are time inneficient. 

    Solution: The STAD (System for Transportation of Autonomous Delivery) is an automatic delivery system that does not require human personnel, and it can be optimized to operate at convenient times to cause less traffic and energy spending.  

    Detailed Solution:  The proposed system integrates a self driving package delivery vehicle with small scale drones.  The vehicle drives packages from a warehouse to a destination and from there drones carry the packages to individual houses.  This is an improved system because it is less costly and the truck can drive at night, reducing the impact of delivery trucks (semis, vans, etc.) on traffic and pollution.

    Precedent: We just found a similar idea created by a delivery company called Amp Holdings. They had the idea to launch a delivery drone from a truck parked close to the house rather than launching drones from a central warehouse far away from the house.

    Brainstorming Process: 

    We wanted to do an autonomous device, so we tried to think of things that could be improved by autonomy. We decided that package delivery would benefit the most from this enhancement. The original idea was to have a small truck that would be able to climb up stairs;  this would be a useful device as it would actually be able to deliver the package to the front door instead of somewhere on the side of the road. We did not pursue this idea because we realized that the device was too small and expensive relative to the number of package that it could deliver.

    Our second idea was to have a standard-sized delivery truck that would only sort the packages, while still relying on a human to drive and to deliver packages from the truck to the house. This has the advantage of being faster that having the driver do all the work, but it still requires a person in the truck for it to function.

    Our third idea was to have a system that carries the packages from a big grid, similar to the multi-directional elevator in a coca-cola vending machine. The problem with this is that each row of packages would need to have a separate conveyor belt, which means that the device would have too many moving parts to be practical.

    Our fourth idea was to simply have a large box into which the packages are placed. The one problem with this is that because of wall-effect, the drone would lose power on the side closest to the wall causing the drone to fall to that side. This would mean the drone would be mostly uncontrollable when it went down into the back of the truck to get the packages.


    Our final idea is to have a carousel that lifts the packages up to the top of the truck. The drone then grabs the package and flies to the house. There can be more than one carousel to maximize the truck’s storage space. The drone is mounted on a sliding mount so that it can move into position over each carousel.

    Delivery Steps: 

    1. The STAD gets the packages from the post office

    2. The STAD drives to the next house

      1. The carousel is rotated so that the correct package is accessible

      2. The drone is moved into position over the package, ready to be deployed

    3. The STAD arrives at the house

      1. The drone is dropped onto the package causing the arm to gram the package

    4. The drone flies the package over any obstacles (fences, stairs, people, etc.) to the house

    5. The drone releases the package on the porch of the house

    6. The drone flies back to the STAD

      1. The drone docks with the STAD

      2. The drone’s battery is replaced with a charged battery

    7. The truck leaves the house, repeating the same process from step 2

     

  • During the course of this project, we have designed a fully autonomous package delivery vehicle. This device is capable of delivering packages from the post office and delivering them to people’s houses while also picking up packages to be delivered to the post office in almost any location.

    Problem: The delivery industry is slow, expensive, and inefficient, especially today with more and more people shopping online.

    Solution: The STAD (System for Transportation of Autonomous Delivery) is an automatic delivery system that does not require any drivers.

    Detailed Solution: Our product is a self driving package delivery truck that gives packages to a drone when it reaches its destination, and then the drone carries the package to the door.  The is an improved system because it is cheaper than human labor, and the truck can drive at night, reducing the impact of delivery trucks (semis, vans, etc.) on traffic. Also, with the proper sensors, the truck’s safety performance would not be reduced at night.

    We just found a similar idea created by a delivery company called Amp Holdings. They had the idea to launch a delivery drone from a truck parked close to the house rather than launching drones from a central warehouse far away from the house.


    Our final idea is to have a carousel that lifts the packages up to the top of the truck. The drone then grabs the package and flies to the house. There can be more than one carousel to maximize the truck’s storage space. The drone is mounted on a sliding mount so that it can move into position over each carousel.

     

    Delivery Steps: 

    1. The STAD gets the packages from the post office

    2. The STAD drives to the next house

      1. The carousel is rotated so that the correct package is accessible

      2. The drone is moved into position over the package, ready to be deployed

    3. The STAD arrives at the house

      1. The drone is dropped onto the package causing the arm to gram the package

    4. The drone flies the package over any obstacles (fences, stairs, people, etc.) to the house

    5. The drone releases the package on the porch of the house

    6. The drone flies back to the STAD

      1. The drone docks with the STAD

      2. The drone’s battery is replaced with a charged battery

    7. The truck leaves the house, repeating the same process from step 2

     

  • Delivery trucks are uniform in design but not uniform in package quantity. This creates two issues, that you are constantly taking up unnecessary space, and that it is extremely difficult to maneuver such large vehicles.  This was solved by the folding and the module design of the storage compartments After many iterations and hours of brainstorming, we came up with the idea of a foldable delivery truck. This would allow the driver to fold and unfold the delivery truck when necessary. Once the driver is finished delivering all of the packages, they would fold the truck making it much easier to drive, especially in urban areas.

  • Delivery trucks are uniform in design but not uniform in package quantity. This creates two issues, that you are constantly taking up unnecessary space, and that it is extremely difficult to maneuver such large vehicles.  This was solved by the folding and the module design of the storage compartments After many iterations and hours of brainstorming, we came up with the idea of a foldable delivery truck. This would allow the driver to fold and unfold the delivery truck when necessary. Once the driver is finished delivering all of the packages, they would fold the truck making it much easier to drive, especially in urban areas.

     

    Our original design precedent was the caterpillar design at the airport, but we ran into a few issues with that. The main one being the fact that it wastes a lot of space in between compartments. In an industry that banks on transporting maximum cargo with a limited space, the caterpillar design was not feasible. We decided on pursuing a new route, based on the foldable crate design. This ended up being the core concept for our final design. There were also precedents for both locks incorporated.For the foldable sides, we went with a bolt lock design. We 3D printed out the lock holds and used a steel wire as the bolt.  The other design we used was a turning key design. This was used to attach two separate components together.

     

    During this studio, we had to do a lot of brainstorming. We brainstormed the idea of a foldable scooter in the cabin, and the idea of compartments attached to the back with rechargeable batteries. We had to scrap those ideas and had to spend hours trying to think of a better solution. We eventually thought of the caterpillar design, like the ones they use in airports. When we realized that we couldn’t fit the wheels into the other compartments, we had to scrap that idea too. We then spent a whole day trying to think of another idea that would work. We finally decided to do a folding compartment attached to a cabin. We also thought of adding batteries, but after hours of thinking we gave up because we didn’t have space for it.

     

    Our first iteration was a combination of our separate ideas. This ended up with a truck with an end compartment with rechargeable batteries and had a foldable cart in the back for delivering mail. We continued this idea, but during the first presentation we had to rethink the whole design because it had too many flaws. After a long time of thinking, we came up with a Truck with end compartments that can fit into each other like the caterpillar cars at your average airport. This idea worked well until we had a few flaws that we couldn’t fix. Once again we had to rethink our design. Our final idea was a truck with an end compartment that can fold onto itself like a collapsible crate. This would solve spacing issues with the big trucks we use today, and it would also be removable.

     

    Our final design is a set of “keys” that lock into locks to be able to connect the compartments to the cabin. It then has hinges to be able to collapse onto itself. It also has a set of lock hinges so that you can lock it without it collapsing onto itself when you don’t want it to. To solve issues with the sides not fitting, we instead decided to put up a canvas to cover the sides. It has only two wheels because any more and we would run into spacing issues. Finally, it has “keys” on the back as well to be able to connect more than one compartment.

     

     

     

  • Do you know how many people it takes to bring a baby stroller up stairs? There are two reasonable solutions. One solution is to have another person pick up the front of the stroller while you pick up the back of the stroller and carry the stroller up the stairs. Another solution is picking up the baby and dragging the stroller up the stairs behind you. Now, you have no need to worry about how you will get your stroller and baby safely up the stairs, for we have created the Stair Climber. The Stair Climber is a stroller that can safely go up and down stairs. The problem we tried to tackle is people having trouble taking their babies and strollers safely up the stairs. The Stair Climber does this at the switch of a button, in a safe and efficient manner. The Stair Climber is a fairly simple piece of machinery. It works with four motors each attached to individual wheels. These wheels are not your ordinary wheels. The wheels have the ability to go into Stair Climbing and descending mode. In this version, the wheel simple overlaps some of its pieces to create a cross-like wheel to propel itself up and down the stairs. The motors run with a simple flick of a switch, located at the back of the stroller. There is also one nine volt battery that powers all of the motors which spin the wheels.

    For our first design, we were going to use a half circle to climb the stairs and I worked on that for over a day before realising that would not work. For the second iteration, we went to a design that was just an X with nothing sticking out of the sides. We quickly realised that we would need more traction than that design offered more traction that is when we went to the current wheel shape but only one wheel. Then when working Monday we came up with the idea to use two wheels. the two wheels allow you to climb upstairs yet still have a smooth ride on flat ground. We spent the rest of the week improving on this design. was building the model staircase. The staircase was very hard to build. David helped us a lot by teaching us the way in which the staircase should be assembled so it can hold the appropriate amount of weight. We also had multiple iterations of our stroller before we ended up with our final product.

     

     

  •             Every year approximately 360,000 people die by drowning, which is about 40 people a day. Most of these accidents happen due to kids under 14 or even adults swimming in areas that are hazardous or not appropriate for their swimming ability. Although most large public beaches do have lifeguard stands, it only takes about a minute for someone to drown. In rough waters, or choppy seas, a lifeguard in most situations would be unable to help a victim.

                Our solution to address the problem is our SafeBoat. In malls and many large public buildings, Segways are used to patrol an area. The equivalent vehicle for water would be our SafeBoat. This paddle board size boat would be cheap, portable and easy to control. Besides having lifeguards in stands, there would be additional lifeguards patrolling the beach on these boats. They would be totally electric to prevent gas fumes/pollution, and would serve the need for a few hours. In case of emergency, the lifeguard would be able to spot the victim quickly and move towards them. Then they would be able to throw a rope to the victim, or if necessary pull them on board if unconscious. In the front of the vehicle would also be a stretcher in case of an accident or an injury in the water. Once a victim is rescued they could then be driven onto the beach to an ambulance fast and easy.

  •           Getting to and from the train is not an enjoyable experience. Train stops are not always conveniently located, scooters are not a practical transporter as it is hard to fit a scooter in your bag, and bikes are not allowed on trains forcing riders to risk having their bike be stolen. So, we set out to create an “enhancement” to the T riding experience that was fast, compactible, and lighter than the existing ways of getting to and from the train. From the beginning, we intended to create a device to enhance the T, what we believe is an already existing and functioning mode of transportation. We had no intentions of creating a device to replace the T riding experience. With this in mind, we set out to design the Mono-Bird.

           The Mono-Bird is a small, light, compactable transportation device designed to enhance the T experience.  The single wheel in the center allows it to be light and small. The foldable wings make the Mono-Bird compactable and easy to carry. The T is a proven reliable mode of t transportation that generally works well and efficiently, and we’re not trying to replace that. Our priority was to enhance the experience getting to and from the train. We’re trying to make it better, faster, and more enjoyable. The Mono-Bird originated as a transportation device for college students or young adults. It gradually transformed into a device for everyone and anyone. The Mono-Bird still has work to be done, the electronics need to be fitted to the wheel, we need a small and efficient battery that fits in the wheel, but the future is clearly bright.

  • Over 6.8 million American residents rely on assistive devices to help them with their mobility and 1.7 million of which, use wheelchairs or scooter rides. The loss of mobility in ones legs can be due to multiple disabilities such as spinal cord injuries or medical amputations. Losing the ability to walk not only limits what you can do, but also the freedom of where you can go. It is physically impossible for a paraplegic to operate a normal vehicle due to the inability to use the gas and break, as well as the struggle of moving in and out of their wheelchair in order to move into the car’s seat. 

    Today, there are vehicles that are handicapped accessible, however, those that are still require assistance from an outside party to assist them while getting in the vehicle, and they also do not take into account where they will put their wheelchair that they are moving out of. The HandiCarpt is the vehicle we designed to give paraplegic the freedom to drive a car and increase their opportunities to reach their desired destination without needing assistance from an outside party, or even having to leave their wheelchair. 

    This vehicle is equipped with an automatic telescoping ramp, so the person can easily roll into the back of their vehicle; a manually adjustable platform in front of the steering wheel which fastens tightly and securely, so that the person’s can safely drive while in their wheelchair; a headrest that automatically comes down from the top of the car and fasten to the top of the wheelchair for head and neck support; and  a yoke-style steering wheel, so the person can control the acceleration by pulling it toward them and deceleration by pushing it forward, this is also a safe feature because it allows the driver to maintain a consistent acceleration by only turning the yoke 90 degrees to the right and left. 

    The HandiCapt is a safe way for paraplegics to travel on the roads as they please. Adjusting to all types of people and their wheelchairs, this product, like no other, expands the opportunities of transportation for those who's lives are limited and turns the “I can’t” into an “I can”.

  •             Getting to and from the train is not an enjoyable experience. Train stops are not always conveniently located, scooters are not a practical transporter as it is hard to fit a scooter in your bag, and bikes are not allowed on trains forcing riders to risk having their bikes be stolen. So, we set out to create an “enhancement” to the T riding experience that was fast, compactible, and lighter than the existing ways of getting too and from the train. From the beginning, we intended to create a device to enhance the T, what we believe is an already existing and functioning mode of transportation. We had no intentions of creating a device to replace the T riding experience. With this in mind, we set out to design the Mono-Bird. 


                In the first and second iteration we focused on keeping things simple. The beggining prototypes had one large wheel in the middle and two rectangular wings, one on each side. The wings were 15 by 20 cm long, just big enough to support the arc of your foot. The wheel had a wheel cover to hold the wings in place and also protected the rider's feet from the wheel. The original target audience was young people with time to learn and get used to riding the Monobird.As a result, we didn’t focus on balance or safety features. With that said, we quickly learned that we needed to broaden our target audience. So, in the second iteration we added small wheels on the sides to assist with turning and balance. The wheels only touched the ground while turning providing the rider with support. The wheels also helped to keep the Mono-Bird clean and durable by keeping the wings off the ground. 


               With the second and third iterations, we focused on aesthetics, compactness, safety, and reducing weight. To help with style and safety we flaired the wings back, making the Mono-bird V3 look more stylish and “cooler”. This also enhanced the safety of the device as the back wheels created a triangle effect when they touched the ground making it easy for the user to be stable and balance easily. We also made the wings fold up in the fourth iteration to provide compact storage. We designed snap pins to help keep the wings stay up and folded. Finally, we continued to develop our wheel, this time making it with the 3-d printer, to keep it stronger and enhance the wheel cover, which we intended to use as the main storage for the electronics. 


              By the time we got to the fifth and sixth iteration we started to create models out of wood. The style from the fourth iteration was carried over to the fifth and sixth. We started by laser cutting the parts after modifying the file to be compatible with wood and started assembling. The wheel was hard to laser cut so we 3D printed it on two halfs that screwed together. We quickly designed a hinge system to make it easier for the wings to fold. We placed hinges on the bottom, making it easier to fold, and then connected the wings with wood glue to the wheel cover. When the wheel was done printing we assembled it and put it in the wheel cover. After that we started thinking about the spring-hinge mechanism, that we hoped would provide enough resistance so that the turning system would not be so touchy. Once we had a good idea on what to do we started designing the hinge and designed the sliding spring locks. The first hinge was not to our standards so we re worked the design and started printing. We assembled one wing with the hinge, springs, and sliding locks. Once that worked we met and emulated the design on the other wing, finishing the final prototype. We also programmed an accelerometer that would power the motor based on the direction the rider was leaning. When the rider laid flat (or in neutral), the motor did not go. When the rider leaned forward, the motor pushed the wheel forward. Likewise, when the rider leaned back, the motor provided resistance to slow the rider down. We were able to create a demo with a separate wheel which we hope to add to our final prototype at a later date.

            The Mono-Bird is a small, light, compactable transportation device designed to enhance the T experience.  The single wheel in the center allows it to be light and small. The foldable wings make the Mono-Bird compactable and easy to carry. The T is a proven reliable mode of t transportation that generally works well and efficiently, and we’re not trying to replace that. Our priority was to enhance the experience getting to and from the train. We’re trying to make it better, faster, and more enjoyable. The Mono-Bird originated as a transportation device for college students or young adults. It gradually transformed into a device for everyone and anyone. The Mono-Bird still has work to be done, the electronics need to be fitted to the wheel, we need a small and efficient battery that fits in the wheel, but the future is clearly bright.

     

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