Asee peer logo

Remote Assistive Elevator Control Device

Download Paper |


2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

ET Capstone Projects

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.982.1 - 8.982.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Janak Dave

author page

Thomas Boronkay

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3447

Remote Assistive Elevator Control Device

Janak Dave, Thomas G. Boronkay, James Henize

University of Cincinnati


The Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET) Department at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Applied Science requires a “Design, Build & Test” Capstone design project for students working toward the baccalaureate degree. Most of these are completed by individual students. Local non-profit organizations that offer community service provide some of the projects. By working with these organizations, the MET Department has identified problems students can solve. Improving the quality of life for the elderly and people wit physical disabilities is the current focus for these projects.

A local rehabilitation center, Beechwood Home, approached the MET department to find a solution to the following problem. Many disabled people who have the mobility in their arms and hands to operate powered wheelchairs do not have sufficient strength or the ability to extend their arms to operate the buttons of standard elevator control panels. This is due to their physical limitations and the common placement of control panels in elevator cars. The size and mobility of the powered wheelchairs prevents these users from being able to maneuver close enough to the control panels to reach the buttons. These patients cannot use the elevators in their building without the assistance of a health care provider.

This paper describes a project by James Henize that helped solve this problem from concept to the final working prototype. The practical solution was a remote assistive device, mounted on the wheelchair, to be used by patients with little effort and without help of a health care provider.


Diseases such as cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, arthritis, and stroke affect millions of Americans and, in many cases, result in permanent confinement to wheelchairs [1, 2]. While the electric powered wheelchair improves the lives of thousands of disabled people by giving them some degree of personal mobility, their inability to operate elevator buttons can limit that mobility to a single floor of multi-story buildings. No practical, inexpensive device exists to allow these people to transfer limited hand motion to the proper location to activate elevator call and floor selection buttons.

“Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition” Copyright ©2003, American Society for Engineering

Dave, J., & Boronkay, T. (2003, June), Remote Assistive Elevator Control Device Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12586

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2003 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015