Challenge: Tools for Tremors
Challenger: Veterans with ET
University Partner: University of Texas, San Antonio
Student Team: Madison Morales, Andy Nguyen, Harsh Patel, and Kaytee Zweifel
Faculty: Dr. Don Peterson, Dr. Laura Gaviria, Dr. Teja Guda, and Gennifer Chiou
QL+ Program Manager: Bob Wolff
We partnered with Quality of Life Plus in order to create a device that will allow a veteran with Essential Tremor ("ET), specifically intention tremor, to use a hammer. We designed the TremAid Hammer for veterans that suffer from ET. This device is for veterans that would like to pursue their hobbies or continue working, but their tremors hinder them from using a traditional hammer. Our goal was to create a safe alternative to the traditional hammer.
This device works by using the simple mechanism of the automatic center hole punch design used in metal cutting. This design works when a rod is pushed down to compress a spring. Once the spring is compressed, it releases a secondary hammer from a load, striking the front rod at a high velocity. This results in significant force output. This mechanism is key to our design. Veterans suffering from ET do not have a problem holding an object in place. This issue is aligning the hammer.
The TremAid Hammer eliminates the need for removal of the hammer from the point of impact. The hammer and remain against a nail and be compressed in as many times as needed.