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Design and development of Multi-Purpose Wheeled Stretcher

XXXX1,a, XXXX1,b, XXXX1,c, XXXXXXX1,d, XXXXXXX1,e, XXXXXXX1,f, XXXXXX1,g,


XXXXXX1,h, XXXXXX1,i XXXXXX1,j
1

Faculty of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia,
86400 Parit Raja, Batu Pahat, Johor, Malaysia
a

A, bB, cC, dD, eE, fF, gG, hH, iI, jJ


ABSTRACT

The acute care, movement and out-of-hospital patients transportation are the integral component in
every hospitals. Thus, an ambulance stretcher plays an essential role and it is also the primary
apparatus to rescue patients who require medical care. However, the vibration caused by the fast
accelerating ambulance may worsen the patients injuries. In order to prevent or limit this occasion
from happening, a proper design of a multi-purpose wheeled stretcher should be proposed accordance
to its capability to be utilized in a Search and Rescue (SAR) operation via helicopter. Besides, the
process of mapping a design for a customized structure and joints of a stretcher is constructed in
order to improve its efficiency during rescue purposes. Hence, the aim of this study is to in selecting
suitable design parameters to improve the stability, comfortability, and capability of a stretcher. The
findings suggested that the improved stability, comfortability, and capability could be achieved by
using the Face and Finger Hinge Joint and special design of the stretcher able to fit the Search and
Rescue (SAR) operation by using helicopter. This study has provided a new perspective in designing a
Multi-Structure wheeled stretcher that fullfill the requirements of the project.
Keywords: wheeled stretcher, Search and Rescue (SAR), Face & Finger Hinge Joint,

1.

Introduction

Generally, anambulancestretcherisanintegralpartofthepatienttransportsystemforambulanceservicesor
knownaswheeledmobilitydevicedesignedespeciallyfordisabledindividuals.Itmustnotonlybelightinweight
whilebearingasubstantialload,butmustoptimizethedeliveryofprehospitalcareandwithstandoutdoorelements.
Forseriouslyinjuredpatients,theambulancetransportisoftenverydangerous. Itmaybedangeroustraumatothe
patientwiththeaccelerationsduetoafastambulanceandlongroadjourney.Researchsshowthat,duringabout
10%ofjourneyssomepatientdeteriorationoccurs.Themostharmfulvibrationstopatientslyingdownarebetween
about 2 and 8 Hz, close to the natural frequency of the human body and the vibrations caused by the road
unevennessandtransmittedthroughthevehiclesuspensionsarequitestronginthisfrequencyrange.Inorderto
avoidthisrisk,aMultiStructurewheeledstretcherwithordinarywheeledstretcherfeaturesaswellascapabletofit
the specifications of Save and Rescue (SAR) operation using helicopter should be designed to provide more
conveniencetransportsystemforpatient.Inthisresearch,designofMultiStructurewheeledstretcherwasutilized
inselectingsomesuitabledesignparameterstoimprovethestability,comfortability,andcapabilityofthestretcher.

The picture shown has two types of stretchers : Ambulance stretcher (left) SAR stretcher (right).

2.

Work flow for the design & development of the structure and joints for the stretcher

The multi-structure and joints is one of the most critical components in our project. To design the customized
structure and joints for the stretcher, the process mapping was prepared as shown in figure 1 which illustrates the
framework or work flow mapping of the design and development scheme. Process mapping is a technique used to
identify the steps to be performed for the project purpose. It acts like a tool through which the things are properly
documented to get the high efficiency for the work to be performed. Due to unaffordable budget and lack of
knowledge on the full scale development of the designed stretcher, a stretcher with 1:2 scale is constructed for illustr
ation
Designing
Designing
ofstructure
ofstructure
andjoints
andjoints
ofa
ofa
stretcher
stretcher

Documentedthe
Documentedthe
functional
functional
requirementsfor
requirementsfor
thestretcher
thestretcher

Identifyingthe
Identifyingthe
designparameters
designparameters
ofastretcher
ofastretcher

Reviewedthe
Reviewedthe
existing
existing
stretchersand
stretchersand
supportdesigns
supportdesigns

Geometrically
Geometrically
modeledthe
modeledthe
feasibleand
feasibleand
suitableconcepts
suitableconcepts

Loadanalysisofthe
Loadanalysisofthe
designwithsuitable
designwithsuitable
materialsand
materialsand
processes
processes

Rejecteddesigns
Rejecteddesigns
aredocumented
aredocumented
forfuture
forfuture
reference
reference

Rejected
Rejected
Design
Design

Proposinganidealogy
Proposinganidealogy
ofthedesignbydoing
ofthedesignbydoing
aroughsketch
aroughsketch

Approved
Approved
Design
Design

Rejected
Rejected
Design
Design

Choosinga
Choosinga
design
design

Selectionfor
Selectionfor
betterdesign
betterdesign

Conceptmeetingthe
Conceptmeetingthe
entirerequirements
entirerequirements

Reviewedthe
Reviewedthe
existingstructure
existingstructure
andjointdesigns
andjointdesigns

Prototyping,actualload
Prototyping,actualload
testing,andfinalization
testing,andfinalization
ofthecomponents
ofthecomponents

Inputandoutput
Inputandoutput
oftheprocess
oftheprocess
Decision
Decision
Activity
Activity

Production,fabricationand
Production,fabricationand
assemblyprocessesforthe
assemblyprocessesforthe
finalstructureandjoints
finalstructureandjoints
forthestretcher
forthestretcher

performedinthe
performedinthe
process
process

purpose that only specific on the significant parts of the stretcher which is the structure and joints.
FIGURE 1: Work flow mapping for the design & development of the structure and joints for the stretcher

3.

Results and Discussion

In order to achieve the highest stability and comfortability, four choosen joints design have been analyzed, that
are: Strip Hinge Joint, U-Channel hinge Joint, Flat Face Hinge Joint and Face & Finger Hinge Joint. The analysis
was performed using ANASIS software and Table 1 summarizes the design parameters and shows the overall rating
results. Besides, FIGURE 2 shows how the Save and Rescue operation by using helicopter is done.

Strip Hinge

U-Channel

Flat Face

Face &Finger

Joint

hinge joint

Hinge

Hinge Joint

Joint
Technical Descriptors
Load Bearing Capacity

Hinge Joint Weight

Compactness/ Folded size(mm)

200

290

90

90

Safety

Easy and Quick to Deploy

Durability

Cost

Absolute Weight(g)

190.8

199.0

233.4

300.9

(Average Stress MPa at 90 kg UDL)

Rating: Low=3, medium =5 and high= 7 Very high=9


TABLE 1:

Overall rating results of the choosen joints

Referring to the table, face and finger hinge joint was refined to make it more robust by modifying geometry and
becoming the most suitable design configuration material and manufacturing process for our joint on stretcher due to
its load bearing capacity is more 90 kg in dynamic load condition, high strength low weight material, easy to fold or
unfold, safe to use, high in durability and cost effective.

4.

Conclusion

In developing a Multi-Structure wheeled stretcher, proper selection of design parameters of the joints and
structure is critical in improving the stability, comfortability and capability. Our findings suggested that using the
Face & Finger Hinge Joint result in best performance for each requirements that we consider due to its outstanding
properties which is: (i) high in load bearing capacity, (ii) high strength and low weight, (iii) easy assembledismantle, (iv) safe to use, (v) high in durability and (vi) low in development cost. In this study, we also provide a
new ideology on the design of the stretcher that capable to fit the Save and Rescue (SAR) operation by using
helicopter.

5.

References

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