Development of a Lightweight, Durable, Adjustable Composite Backrest

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1R43HD056705-01
Agency Tracking Number: HD056705
Amount: $99,992.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2007
Solicitation Year: 2007
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
DUNS: 847286739
HUBZone Owned: Y
Woman Owned: Y
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Y
Principal Investigator
 (210) 341-0008
Business Contact
Phone: (210) 341-0008
Research Institution
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): We have designed a prototype lightweight, sturdy, user adjustable ergonomically designed backrest support for ultralight weight wheelchairs that will provide necessary postural support and provide a variety of positions to ease dressing, propulsion, and seated comfort. The backrest will improve user comfort, function, and posture during multiple activities of daily living. The innovative design will enable the user to adjust the backrest position while seated in their wheelchair. The benefits of the design are lightweight, high strength, adjustability and durability. The backrest will be adaptable to most ultralight manual wheelchairs. The backrest will be designed with a battery of features that benefit the user including height selection, backrest angle adjustment, backrest to axle positioning, and lumber support. The purpose of the proposed research is to create and test prototypes to identify issues that need to be addressed to develop a practical commercial device. The prototypes will be tested to insure that 1) its dimensions fit a wide variety of ultralight wheelchairs, 2) it meets of exceeds currently approved ANSI/RESNA wheelchair and seating standards, and 3) it performs equivalently of better than other comparable manual wheelchair backrests on ANSI/RESNA tests. A consumer and clinician focus group will evaluate the prototype models and their feedback will be incorporated into the design to be tested to the ANSI/RESNA standards. There are a wide variety rigid backrests commercially available; however, most are heavy, unappealing, and apt to fail under active use. Currently, there are no commercially available backrests that have the capability of being adjusted by the user while seated in the wheelchair. The innovative design of the Lightweight, Durable, and Adjustable Composite Backrest will provide necessary postural support and provide the user a variety of self adjustable positions to promote independence with dressing tasks and propulsion, while providing seated comfort during work tasks in a variety of environmental settings. The backrest will improve user comfort, function, and posture during multiple activities of daily living.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

Agency Micro-sites

SBA logo
Department of Agriculture logo
Department of Commerce logo
Department of Defense logo
Department of Education logo
Department of Energy logo
Department of Health and Human Services logo
Department of Homeland Security logo
Department of Transportation logo
Environmental Protection Agency logo
National Aeronautics and Space Administration logo
National Science Foundation logo
US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government