Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.749709
Title: A knowledge based engineering system for the prescription and manufacture of custom contoured seating for clients with severe musculoskeletal and postural conditions
Author: Partlow, Adam
ISNI:       0000 0004 7234 083X
Awarding Body: University of South Wales
Current Institution: University of South Wales
Date of Award: 2014
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Abstract:
This thesis presents a study into the feasibility of applying a Knowledge Based Engineering System to the manufacture and prescription of custom contoured seating. The custom contoured seats are designed to meet the needs of clients of Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s Rehabilitation Engineering Unit who have neurological, musculoskeletal and/or other conditions that result in limited movement, complex body shapes and poor posture. The custom contoured seats provide accommodation or correction for poor posture whilst improving the client’s function and comfort level, minimising risk to the client and in some cases providing therapeutic benefits such as improving the client’s unsupported posture. The literature review showed that there is not currently a technique in development or envisaged that would perform the task of the system being investigated in this thesis. Three techniques were identified, two for the prescription of wheelchairs based on a series of extensive questions, the output of which is a wheelchair with no custom contoured seating. The third technique converts pressure readings of clients with low complexity conditions sitting on a flat surface into a custom contoured seat. The client group being investigated in this study are unable to sit unsupported and would not be able to provide a meaningful pressure reading when held in position due to the shape of most of the clients’ bodies. Algorithms were developed to extract useful features from Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s Rehabilitation Engineering Unit’s mechanical shape sensor; which is called the Cardiff Body Match. The features extracted from the measurements were designed to reduce the dimensionality of the data and inform a clinical engineer as to the anthropometry of the client seated in the Cardiff Body Match mechanical shape sensor. The algorithms developed were able to correct errors in measurements, estimate the location of pelvic landmarks and provide a classification of the curvature of the back. Engineering rules were elicited from clinical engineers at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s Rehabilitation Engineering Unit and from the literature. The engineering rules were described in plain English and represented using a novel approach based on notations used in predicate calculus. The engineering rules’ application was tested and the shape of a custom contoured seat that could be produced with the Knowledge Based Engineering System was demonstrated. This study has shown that through further research a Knowledge Based Engineering System for the manufacture and prescription of custom contoured seating for clients of Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s Rehabilitation Engineering Unit is possible. This thesis contributes to the knowledge by demonstrating the feasibility of the Knowledge Based Engineering System, developing the bespoke algorithms and the novel collection of knowledge through elicitation.
Supervisor: Kulon, Janusz Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.749709  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Knowledge Based Engineering System ; Custom contoured seating
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