Abstract—The World Health Organization (WHO) reported an estimation of 36 million people who are legally blind this number is expected to be triple. One of the most important effects of vision loss is the loss of ability to travel around safely and independently. In general, the major problems encountered involve obstacles in the pathway and ground plane hazards. The ground plane hazards include the staircases, steps, potholes, pits, ramps, and drainage. Over the years, most of the existing smart devices focus more on the obstacle detection in the surroundings rather than the ground plane hazards which can turn out to be dangerous for the visually impaired. Thus, this project specifically focuses on the development of a smart detection tool for alerting the visually impaired on ground plane hazards. This paper discusses the prototype which is able to detect ground plane hazards like staircases, ramps, drainage and potholes. A real time detection test was conducted and the results proved that the prototype performs up to the expectation in real time.
Index Terms—visual impairment, ground plane hazards, ultrasonic, detection, navigation, obstacles
Cite:Aylwin Chai Bing Chun, Lau Bee Theng, Almon Chai WeiYen, Lil Deverell, Abdullah AL Mahmud, and Christopher McCarthy, "A Ground Plane Hazards Detection Tool for the Visually Impaired," International Journal of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics Research, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 146-156, January 2019. DOI: 10.18178/ijmerr.8.1.146-156