Powered Assistive Device for Stair Mobility

The Problem:
As a result of the growing elderly population, there is a need to provide new technology that will assist these individuals and allow them to support themselves and live alone. Current methods of stair mobility consist mainly of seated chair lifts, which are expensive to purchase and install, take up valuable space in the stairways, and users often develop a reliance on these lifts and lose the health benefits of climbing stairs.

The Solution:
Researchers at the University of Alabama have developed a compact, easy-to-install motorized device to help guide and support people ascending and descending stairs. The technology attaches to the pre-existing handrail of the stairway, and it operates using a mounted motor with a bi-directional track. The assistive device features a back brace/harness cantilevers, which prevent users from falling backwards. This invention sets out to improve on current technology that assists individuals in walking up or down the stairs.


  • Power assisted: easy to use
  • More compact than current technology, foldable: does not take up valuable stair space.
  • Potential of gaining multiple biomechanical health benefits through active stair climbing.

The University of Alabama Research Office of Innovation and Commercialization (OIC) is a non -profit corporation that is responsible for commercializing University of Alabama technologies and for supporting University research. At OIC, we seek parties that are interested in learning more about our technologies and commercialization opportunities, and we welcome any inquiries you may have.



Contact Information

TTO Home Page: https://ua.technologypublisher.com

Name: Lynnette Scales

Title: Administrative Assistant

Department: Office for Innovation & Commercialization

Email: liscales@ua.edu

Phone: (205) 348-5433