Good Thinking

Topchair-S wheelchair has no problem with stairs

Topchair-S wheelchair has no p...
The TopChair-S keeps the occupant face-forward when ascending or descending
The TopChair-S keeps the occupant face-forward when ascending or descending
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The TopChair-S provides the user with greater independence
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The TopChair-S provides the user with greater independence
The TopChair-S keeps the occupant horizontal when going up an incline
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The TopChair-S keeps the occupant horizontal when going up an incline
The TopChair-S provides multiple options for customization
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The TopChair-S provides multiple options for customization
The TopChair-S collapses for ease of storage or travel
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The TopChair-S collapses for ease of storage or travel
The TopChair-S climbs inclines up to 35 degrees
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The TopChair-S climbs inclines up to 35 degrees
The TopChair-S has separate motors for the wheels and the tracks
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The TopChair-S has separate motors for the wheels and the tracks
The TopChair-S suspension system
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The TopChair-S suspension system
The TopChair-S works like a standard electric wheelchair on flat surfaces
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The TopChair-S works like a standard electric wheelchair on flat surfaces
The TopChair-S maneuvers up almost any stairway
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The TopChair-S maneuvers up almost any stairway
The TopChair-S keeps the occupant face-forward when ascending or descending
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The TopChair-S keeps the occupant face-forward when ascending or descending
View gallery - 10 images

Wheelchair users have had to live with the fact that stairs, sharp curbs and doorsteps either required assistance to maneuver, or made access to some locations impossible. The TopChair-S, however, is designed to change that. It's an electric wheelchair designed to safely maneuver over such obstacles, utilizing caterpillar-like tracks in addition to wheels for greater maneuverability and independence.

The TopChair-S automatically detects the start and end of a staircase or similar obstacle, and can maneuver steps that are up to 20 cm (7.9 inches) in height and at a maximum pitch of 35 degrees. It ascends stairs in reverse and descends face-forward, all while keeping the occupant at a level horizontal angle.

Each chair comes with an adjustable joystick and an LCD screen for controlling various functions. Power is provided by two 60-A/h batteries, allowing the chair to travel from 35 to 45 km (22 to 28 miles) at a speed of about 9 km/h (6 mph) before recharging. Two 400-watt motors drive the tracks, while two 350-watt motors power the wheels.

The TopChair-S maneuvers up almost any stairway
The TopChair-S maneuvers up almost any stairway

Additional options and accessories are available for users wanting to customize it according to their specific needs. This includes the addition of chin controls, seat accessories for support and safety, options for arm and leg rests, and an LED lighting kit.

The TopChair-S can be ordered from the company's website for about €15,000 (around US$16,320), but is unavailable for delivery into the US until it passes FDA approval, which is expected to take anywhere from 12 to 18 months.

It joins a number of other tracked wheelchairs like the Tomahawk (geared primarily for use in the outdoors), the Scalevo and the B-Free Chair.
Take a look at the TopChair-S in action, in the following video.

Source: TopChair

The stair-climbing wheelchair TopChair-S

View gallery - 10 images
4 comments
HensleyBeuronGarlington
I bet that's quite an unnerving experience until, if ever, one gets used it. One fall would be more disastrous than walkers falling down the same stairs!
Roger Garrett
Stair-climbing wheelchairs have been proposed, designed, implemented for decades. None of them have found a market.
Stephen N Russell
Test some models, then produce & sell to VA, other hospitals etc. Needed.
Gizzyfuel
You are still better off making ramp and elevator for them be cause what if there a fire and this guy going down first .....yeah umm how would the people escape in time when princess chair going too slow