Inventor Kevin Halsall plans to revolutionise the mobility market with his self-balancing mobility device, the Ogo.
The Ogo works using Segway technology. This means it intuitively moves in the direction the user leans.
“By utilising self-balancing technology, I produced an active, moving seat control, operated by upper body mobility and core muscle strength,” Kevin says.
Halsall built the Ogo for, and with the feedback of, his best friend Marcus Thompson, a T12 paraplegic. Kevin challenged himself to build a device that was easier for Marcus after seeing how his energy and stamina suffered as a result of a conventional wheelchair.
In Marcus’s case he can carry and move objects, power along the undulated beach at up to 20 kph and, in particular, mow his lawns. “It’s therapeutic and healing for the soul. With my hands free, I’m able to use my whole body to carry out tasks again,” he says.
But the story of the Ogo didn’t end there.
“Our goal is to change as many lives as we can,” Kevin says.
The Ogo team have spent the last 5 months testing the device around New Zealand and believe with a few changes, it could be made suitable for a much larger range of disabilities.
They’re planning to improve the design by building 10 new prototypes. These will allow them to conduct a wider trial, as well as perfect the machine before heading into full-scale production and supply in early 2017.
To help fund building the prototypes, the Ogo has turned to Indiegogo to raise US$240,000. As
part of the campaign, early-adopters can buy a prototype (at $40,000 each), or reserve one of the first places in line when the Ogo goes into full-scale production.
Every contributor, regardless of amount, will be offered the opportunity to purchase a production Ogo before they go on general sale.
Supporters can get on board and reserve their place in line at http://igg.me/at/ogotech.