A transformable wheelchair has been created in South Korea (3 photos + 1 video)

11 October 2023

You can move on it sitting, standing and lying down, as well as climb stairs without assistance.

Most power wheelchairs have at least two disadvantages: they cannot climb stairs and the user is constantly seated. But a new robotic wheelchair addresses both shortcomings.


The chair was developed by a team of scientists from the Korea Institute of Mechanical Engineering and Materials (KIMM) led by Dr. Chang-hoon Park. The robotic wheelchair consists of a central platform with a “crawler” module at the bottom and a standing module at the top.

The rubber track stair climber stays retracted into the chair when not needed and lowers to the ground when the user needs to go up or down the stairs. He then adjusts his angle relative to the main wheelchair so that the chair remains horizontally level.

However, one of the stated benefits of this particular design is that it uses four sets of rails—two at the front and two at the rear—to grip both the edges of individual stairs and the platforms of those stairs. This arrangement is said to keep the chair from sliding around, which has been a problem with some other models.

The standing module uses a motorized parallelogram design to move the user to a standing, reclining, forward or backward reclining position as needed. This feature is intended not only to make life easier for the user, but also to reduce the likelihood of bed sores or poor circulation caused by staying in one position for too long.

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