Mechanical characteristics of microswitches adapted for the physically disabled

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The object of this study was to measure the mechanical characteristics of several commonly used adapted switches in order to demonstrate the feasibility of collecting quantitative descriptions of switch performance. A stepping motor was used to drive a digital micrometer vertically towards the tested switch and proving-ring strain gauges recorded the operating force. Measures of activation and deactivation forces, travel and switch compliance were compared; several clinical examples illustrate the functional application of these results. It is anticipated that this information will permit clinicians to prescribe switches in a more accurate manner.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)398-402
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biomedical Engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1990
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author is grateful to Dr Ian Hunter for making available the a paratus used to carry out the experiments and for Ki s many helpful suggestions. A reci-ation is also extended to Serge Lafontaine and !z axon August for their assistance. This work was supported by a grant from the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada.


  • Severely physically disabled
  • adapted switches
  • force transducer
  • static mechanical properties

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics


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