Mechanical Engineering - Cooperative Education
Bachelor of Science
Date of Expected Graduation
For our senior design project, our team will be consulting to create a balancing aid system intended for the recumbent bicycle shown below in Figure 1. The owner of the bicycle is Robert Henderson, a former United States Navy sailor from Northeast Ohio who picked up biking and skiing while he was stationed in Maine in the late 80’s. While there, he took to the mountains on the rugged terrain and brought this passion of biking back home to share with his wife, Johanna once he completed his service to his country. Biking became an integral part of the Henderson’s lifestyle and was one of their favorite family activities.
However, 14 years ago, Robert was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease which has greatly affected his body and thus his riding ability. His family came to Akron seeking an engineering team to help design something to help him get back to riding again. Studies have shown that the act of balancing and riding a bicycle can reduce the tremors and shakiness caused by Parkinson’s Disease. Through the University of Akron’s Engineering Service Design Team, our team connected with Robert and his family and we were able to borrow the recumbent bicycle from them to work on our design.
The bicycle shown below is what Robert’s wife Johanna brought to us in an attempt to create a system that stabilizes it so that Robert can once again enjoy his passion for biking. Our task was to create a system based off of this bicycle that would allow Robert freedom in biking but also keep him stable at all times.
Engineering Service Design Team
Hager, James, "Recumbent Bicycle Balancing Aid" (2019). Williams Honors College, Honors Research Projects. 860.