Many technologies have been tested around the world to help blind and visually impaired people walk unaided, now Palestinian students at the Polytechnic University in Hebron may have made a breakthrough.
They have developed what they call Smart Assist System for Blind People (SASB).
It is a smart vest that uses a ground sensor to detect obstacles. It works with vibration and voice commands to inform the user about the best way forward.
“This is maybe an alternative for the stick that we often use in our daily life. It also tells you where the obstacles are on your right, left or in front. This is really great,” said vest user Ayoub Al-Sarsour.
The vest wearer can also follow voice commands through headphones connected to the system.The system also provides the user with a sound alert signalling its battery capacity, before switching immediately to energy saving mode before it runs out.
Ramzi al Qawam, Dean of Engineering at Hebron University said the students need encouragement: “The students were able with their limited resources to design and execute this project. The project still needs more development with financial and moral support and needs to be embraced by institutions.”
The aim of the project, according the Palestinian students, is to better integrate blind people into society and thus make their lives easier.