Zhang Wei operates the wheelchair at a residential community in Xi'an, Shaanxi province, April 17, 2019. (Photo: chinadaily.com.cn)
Teachers and students from the artificial intelligence institute of Xidian University in Northwest China's Shaanxi province have developed a smart wheelchair for Zhang Wei, a post-1990 generation member who has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. The new device was created specifically for those with ALS, to better improve their daily lives.
According to Sun Long, who participated in the research and development, the wheelchair features a eye-tracking system and advanced technologies including AI and internet of things. The system can read the ALS patients' thoughts through identifying the patients' eyeballs movements to collect information, and then move the wheelchair automatically.
It can also move safely at night. Further improvements will be made to the system to correct for minor deviations when operating under bright light.