A group project at Pittsburg State University could soon help those that are wheelchair bound within the community.
Every year, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering Technology seniors work on a big final project. However this year they’re making something a bit different…a pedicab. This device is similar to a rickshaw or a bike taxi found in bigger cities, but with something different added to it.
“Instead of just having a bench seat for maybe tourists to sit on. It will have a bench seat, but it will also be able to taken out. The bench seat will be able to be taken out and the wheel chair will be able to go up a ramp,” says Mitchell Yeomans, project leader.
Last semester students had to design their project and now they have to try and create it.
“This one had some unique challenges. So that people will be able to use it with people that might be able to walk up in there own power, but convert it into something that would be able to use with a wheelchair. That was a design challenge that nobody’s had to deal with that, nobody’s ever had to in this class that I’m aware of,” says Dr. David Miller, Associate Professor in Mechanical Engineering Technology.
The students are working with the school’s Department of Health, Human Performance, and Recreation and the age well division of Live Well Crawford County.
“Their goal is to be able to use this in a way that will give handicap individuals or elderly individuals. So anyone that couldn’t ride a bike with their own power, give them that bike ride experience,” says Mitchell Yeomans.
And knowing that the quality of the final product will not only impact their grades, but other people’s lives means a lot to them.
“The ability to give other people rides that might not be able to… It’s our biggest accomplishment out of all this,” says Yeomans.