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Affordable intelligent braking system fitted wheelchair invention wins Gold Award

At ITEX 2008, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) won 9 Gold, 10 Silver and 5 Bronze medals. The gold medals were for an affordable Intelligent Braking System fitted wheelchair for use by paraplegics, sustainable aqua-feed, environmental friendly polymer, intelligent exoskeletal arm for stroke patients and more.


Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) yet again proved its calibre as a research university when it recorded a 100% success rate as all its entries each garnered an award at the 19th International, Invention, Innovation, Industrial Design & Technology Exhibition (ITEX 2008).This outstanding achievement was undoubtedly a substantial improvement on its performance in ITEX 2007.

USM, which entered a total of 24 research products for the competition, bagged 9 gold, 10 silver and 5 bronze medals. Among the gold medal winners was Dr. Syed Sahal Nazli Alhady Syed Hassan from the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (PPKEE) who tasted success through his Intelligent Braking System fitted wheelchair for use by paraplegics.

Syed Sahal, when interviewed, said that he did not expect his invention, which was designed to alleviate the burden of the disabled community who are highly dependent on wheelchairs for mobility, to strike gold.

"I did not expect this product to bag the gold medal. However, this award will certainly inspire me and I am overjoyed at my success,’’ stressed the wheelchair bound recipient.

Among the advantages of Syed Sahal's invention is its ability to brake automatically when descending slopes. Furthermore, its lower cost is an added bonus as current models available in the local market are estimated to cost approximately RM6,000 each.

"The disabled community have no choice but to purchase the expensive motorised models. However, with this invention, they have an alternative that will assist them to move about more safely especially when descending slopes,’’ he explained.

Another USM researcher, Prof. Darah Ibrahim from the School of Biological Sciences continued her streak of success when her product, A Novel Pilot Scale for The Continuous System of Prototype Bio-enzymatic De-inking for the Paper Recycling Industry bagged a gold medal.

Seven other researchers also bagged gold medals at the exhibition. They were :

Dr. Alexander Chong Shu-Chien, from the School of Biological Sciences with his product, TRANS-HUFA - A sustainable and economical aqua-feed ingredient.

Azlan Osman, Omar Amer Abouabdalla, from the National Advanced IPv6 Centre with their innovative application, MCS-AC Multipoint Application Conferencing.

Prof. Hanafi Ismail, from the School of Material Engineering & Mineral Resources with his product, DEGRA-TPE-A Novel Environmental Friendly And Degradable Polymer.

Prof. Haji Yusoff Hassan, from the School of Mechanical Engineering (PPKM) with his innovation, Throttle Lock.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mani Maran Ratnam, from the School of Mechanical Engineering (PPKM) with his innovation, High-sensitivity Crack Monitoring System for Concrete Structures.

Prof. Mohd. Zaid Abdullah, School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (PPKEE) with his invention, Intelligent Exoskeletal Arm Trainer for Stroke Patients.

Assoc .Prof. Dr. Phua Kia Kien, Institute for Molecular Medicine Research (INFORMM) for his product, Chemical Inventory Management System (CIMS).

More than 500 research products from various institutions and research organisations from throughout the world participated in ITEX 2008 which was organised by the Malaysian Invention and Design Society (MINDS).

Mohamad Abdullah | ResearchSEA
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