University of Twente Student Theses


Research and conceptual design of a new user-driven fall detection concept for older adults

Rendering, C. (2020) Research and conceptual design of a new user-driven fall detection concept for older adults.

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Abstract:Fall accidents in the elderly are an underestimated and growing problem. Due to a fast aging population, the number of serious fall accidents increases sharply. In many cases, a fall in old age has far-reaching consequences for the lives of the elderly and leads to increasing pressure on both formal and informal care. Therefore, the aim of this study is the design of an innovative user-driven fall detection concept for frail older adults and their carers. Literature and State-of-the-Art research showed that many falldetection devices are currently available, but there are still many improvements / opportunities for a product that meets the needs and wishes of the elderly. To find out exactly what the needs and wishes are, various interviews and surveys were conducted. A brainstorm on ways to capture as many needs of stakeholders as possible in one product was conducted. The proposed product concept consists of modular wearable device for the elderly and a corresponding smartphone app, which will be used by a group of carers. The wearable device can send an alarm to the carers in the smartphone app in the following three cases: an automatic fall alarm, a personal alarm and an emergency push alarm. In case of an alarm, the carers are warned by the smartphone app which goes into alarm mode. From a list in which the group of carers are ranked, the app determines who should be automatically asked to provide immediate assistance first. This concept was developed based on the requirements of the different stakeholders using an exploratory design approach and by using several idea generation methods. A digital product model of the wearable device and an interactive mockup of the smartphone app were created to test and evaluate the product concept with key stakeholders. The product has additional features and services that not exist in the currently available fall detection systems. Therefore this new product has the potential to become a success, but a physical technical realization will be required to further test and evaluate the product concept.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:50 technical science in general
Programme:Creative Technology BSc (50447)
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