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Journal of Healthcare Engineering
Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 6083565, 20 pages
Research Article

Intelligent Control Wheelchair Using a New Visual Joystick

Laboratoire SIME, Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Ingénieurs de Tunis (ENSIT), Université de Tunis, 5 Av. Taha Hussein, 1008 Tunis, Tunisia

Correspondence should be addressed to Yassine Rabhi

Received 5 August 2017; Revised 7 November 2017; Accepted 27 November 2017; Published 7 February 2018

Academic Editor: Maria Lindén

Copyright © 2018 Yassine Rabhi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A new control system of a hand gesture-controlled wheelchair (EWC) is proposed. This smart control device is suitable for a large number of patients who cannot manipulate a standard joystick wheelchair. The movement control system uses a camera fixed on the wheelchair. The patient’s hand movements are recognized using a visual recognition algorithm and artificial intelligence software; the derived corresponding signals are thus used to control the EWC in real time. One of the main features of this control technique is that it allows the patient to drive the wheelchair with a variable speed similar to that of a standard joystick. The designed device “hand gesture-controlled wheelchair” is performed at low cost and has been tested on real patients and exhibits good results. Before testing the proposed control device, we have created a three-dimensional environment simulator to test its performances with extreme security. These tests were performed on real patients with diverse hand pathologies in Mohamed Kassab National Institute of Orthopedics, Physical and Functional Rehabilitation Hospital of Tunis, and the validity of this intelligent control system had been proved.