2020 Global Student Innovation Challenge - Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology (gSIC-REAT)

Congratulations to the following teams for their success in the Global Student Innovation Challenge:



Technology Category


GOLD – JBAwesome (Singapore) National University of Singapore, School of Computing AvTant - Development of Assistant Auditory-Verbal Therapy based Speech Recognition and Graphic Feedback Correction with Gamification AvTant is a product that integrates self-studying and gaming to improve the education of hearing-impaired children. Our AvTant encourages them to learn and practice, improving their pronunciation and speaking. With AvTant, Auditory Verbal Therapist can track the hearing- impaired children's learning progress, prescribe for them the exercises as homework for them. On the other hand, Cube-Hub is a physical game for children to arrange the digital and interactive letter cubes to form a word, improving their vocabulary. These helps reduce the number of their visits to therapists thereby lessening their financial burden. Our Speech recognition, Graphic feedback, Mouth shape video recognition, 3D animation, 3D Unity-based App idea is also supported by Ms.Oliva (AVT in Singapore General hospital), Ms.Charlene Wong (Deaf Community Ambassador from Touch Community Centre), etc. Through six months of development and testing, we have finally produced a fully functional product ready for the hearing-impaired children and Therapist's use.


SILVER – VR-Make it come True (Taiwan) National Cheng Kung University, Department of Biomedical Engineering Development of a Virtual Reality Mirror Therapy System for Hemiplegia Rehabilitation This system aims at improving the rehabilitation effect of “hemiplegia” patients by performing “mirror therapy” in virtual reality. “Hemiplegia” is one of the common symptoms of a stroke. Patients with unilateral limb paralysis cause movement disorders and difficulty in maintaining balance. Traditional occupational therapy uses mirror therapy with visual stimulation of hand mirror movements to improve the affected hand’s functional movement, agility, and precision. The main concept of this system is “mirroring”, updating the coordinates in real-time to keep the property of mirroring between hand images and objects to the virtual reality, and then displayed in the VR headset. Finally, users can choose Leap Motion Controller or Oculus Controller as the device according to the properties of rehabilitation movement, simple movement, and task-oriented movement respectively. The simple movement contains the flexion and extension of fingers and wrists, turning over the palms, touching the thumb to the tip of pinky, circling the thumb. The task-oriented movement is composed of pinching coins, drawing circles, flipping cards, moving stationary, pulling out crops, and throwing basketballs. The feature of this system is that Leap Motion provides realistic hand trajectories on the affected side and the Oculus system possesses haptic feedback. Compared with products on the market or existing rehabilitation procedures, such as Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy (CIMT), traditional mirror therapy, etc., are more competitive and novel. In terms of the effectiveness of rehabilitation, after passing the review of the Institutional Review Board (IRB) and conducting clinical trials in the rehabilitation department of National Cheng Kung University Hospital. The result shows that virtual reality mirror therapy (VRMT) can not only retain the advantages of traditional mirror therapy, improving dexterity and coordination of fingers but has more significant improvements in dexterity and strength of fingers. Based on the clinical trial results of stroke patients, the combination of VRMT with task-oriented training had better beneficial effects on sensorimotor and function of the upper extremity in the patients with a spastic patient. Regarding the safety precautions, the potential dangers are divided into two parts: the dizziness caused by the immersive experience and the limited range of activities of the VR device. For the dizziness, it can be solved by removing the VR headset immediately. As for the range of operation, it only needs assistant through rehabilitation. In summary, it only needs a therapist or family member to remove safety concerns and other issues.


BRONZE –Bedside Defender (Taiwan) Southern Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Department of Electrical Engineering / Department of Electronics / Department of Creative Product Design EyeWall Patient falls are a very complex patient safety issue in the medical environment. Among all patient groups, the elderly has the highest proportion of death caused by hospital falls, and it increases as age increases. According to statistics, the so-called activity “when getting in and out of bed” accounts for the greatest number of hospital’s fall events for elderly patients. To reduce this incidence of falls in the hospitals, prevention, and early warnings gain more importance than the treatment of the fall. The so-called prevention is better than cure could save a huge follow-up medical cost. Although there are researches regarding the prevention of hospital falls in the past, these preventive measures require long-term intervention and time-consuming nursing and health education. For elderly patients, these cannot provide a good preventive measure. Hence, the project developed the “out-of-bed warning and bedside fall notification system” based on deep learning edge computing technology called “Eye Wall”. Its system architecture includes an AI image sensor, AI edge computing Wi-Fi base station, push-broadcast out-of-bed warning, bedside fall incident cloud server, incident notification APP, and bedside incident information platform. According to the clinical needs of the senior ward, this system demonstrates the corresponding two-stage out-of-bed warning and bedside fall notification function as shown in figure 1. The two-stage warning is when the patient gets up and sits up, and the second warning is when the patient is already sitting. According to statistics, it takes at least 1 to 3 minutes for elderly patients with a high risk of falling to get out of the bed. But if no one is there to assist and the elderly patient falls from the bedside, a bedside fall notification report will notify the nursing staff in real-time to provide immediate medical care assistance of the elderly patient that falls. To avoid false alarm, the system will also detect (1) if the patient is alone and, (2) whether there is a continuous action of lying in bed, getting up and sitting up, and sitting on the edge of the bed. Subsequently, EyeWall adopts AI edge computing technology and it can complete an image torso recognition on its embedded system without the use of IP Camera to transmit the image outside, and it only transmits out-of-bed warning and bedside fall notification events, which does not compromise the patient’s privacy and can guarantee information security.


MERIT – SmartGlove (Singapore) Temasek Polytechnic, School of Engineering, Diploma in Computer Engineering Fine Motor Skill Training for Autistic Children Our project aims to improve the fine motor skill of children with Autism through the finger exercises mobile app games and smart glove. The app provides visual feedback for the children and therapist can view the exercise progress through the cloud. It comprises a glove equipped with sensors and a Bluetooth module that works in conjunction with a mobile app. The system will be able to detect a patient’s finger movements as he performs various finger exercises. The algorithm in the mobile app analyzes the patient’s fine motor skills based on how fast the patient reacts, as well as how long he can continue with the game. The results area then sent in real time to a web portal which the physiotherapist can access remotely to monitor the patient’s condition and provide feedback. The children will bend their fingers according to the instructions given on the smart phone while wearing the glove on their hand. Beside the exercise, the application is also links to an online database, which would allow the therapist to view the progress of the children without meeting face to face. Hence, our low-cost device helps autism children to exercise at home to improve their fine motor skills. The mobile game motivates them to play the game, which in turn helps in exercising their fine motor skills.


MERIT – SmartSole (Singapore) Temasek Polytechnic, School of Engineering, Diploma in Computer Engineering Smart Insole cum Foot Screening for Diabetic Patients Our project helps diabetic patients with early detection of foot ulcer and also facilitates foot screening using AI. An early warning device using a smart insole can help prevent diabetic foot ulcer (DFU) for diabetic patients. The DFUs that do not heal can cause severe damage to tissues and may require amputation of a toe, foot or part of a leg. In order to prevent DFU formation, the first step is to inspect the foot periodically. Our Smart Insole project comprises a shoe insole equipped with sensors to detect the temperature as well as pressure exerted at particular points on the insole, so as to monitor early signs of foot ulcer, particularly in diabetic patients. The readings are sent via a Bluetooth module on the shoe, to a mobile app which classifies the ulcer risk level in real time and uploads the data onto an Internet cloud portal which can be accessed remotely by a doctor. The mobile app also analyses an image of the patient’s foot, this together with the insole readings, patients will be provided with an accurate ulcer diagnosis with the help of AI. Our project reduces the frequent visits to hospital by self-monitoring foot related wounds from home. Also, yearly foot screening for pre-diabetics can be done using our AI based mobile app. The app classifies the ulcer picture in to 3 risk categories. Depending upon the risk level, it alerts the user to visit the clinic. The cloud-based web site helps health care provider to monitor their patients remotely. Hence, our low-cost device (with hardware and software) plays an important role in preventing ulcer and automating the foot screening process using AI.


Best Presentation – Wheelchair-savvy (Taiwan) Chung Yuan Christian University, Department of Biomedical Engineering / Department of Commercial Design / National Formosa University, Department of Multimedia DesignWheelchair-savvy The population aging is a serious issue in Taiwan for recent years. The elderly not only need the caring services but also demanding for the wheelchair to assist their walk. In order to reduce the manpower, strength the self-caring ability of the elderly and improve the impact from the burden of body which causing by the wheelchair, we design a type of wheelchair which can be easily using by themselves for decreasing the caring demands. Unlike other published wheelchairs in the market, our users don’t need to transpose by the assistance from manpower. The users only have to sit on bedside and controlling the wheelchair to reach the bedside, then holding the auxiliary lever and slowly move forward to get on/off the wheelchair. We achieve the functions such as correcting posture and activating the blood circulation by adding the kneeling posture, we also increase the exercising spaces for hand in the meanwhile to enable our users having some simple self-care (e.g. drinking water, taking books or going to the restroom). In our user community, we will focus on the elderly and the disabled. Thus, our customer base will be the nursing home which demanding higher manpower and the general home that require for self-care. We believe that the design above can indirectly change the posture of the wheelchair and make the users (the elderly and the disabled) having more convenient and cozy lives.


Best Prototype – Free Walk (Taiwan) Southern Taiwan University of Science and Technology, Department of Electrical Engineering / Department of Mechanical EngineeringIntelligent Reabling Assistive Walker According to the World Health Organization report, approximately one billion people worldwide suffered from a certain degree of disability in their lives due to old age and disease, and about 200 million of them are in distress due to incapacity. If these disabled persons can be assisted with the help of assistive devices or rehabilitation training, they will have the opportunity to accomplish their self-living ability. This project develops a smart walker that has applicability and training effectiveness evaluation for the patients with light and moderate walking disabilities. During the process of rehabilitation with the help of the smart walker, various physiological parameters and rehabilitation benefit evaluation indexes can be recorded, including data such as physiological signals, foot pressure, gait, walking trajectory, the rehabilitation efficiency analysis and behavior pattern analysis in an artificial intelligence manner. In addition, the individualized support and service of the elderly will be included. At present, the integration of mechanism and power system of the assistive walker have been completed, which can drive the assistive walker to move, according to the recovery ability or rehabilitation status of the patient, and provide walking assistance.


Best Ergonomic – MemoryLane (Singapore)Temasek Polytechnic, School of Engineering, Diploma in Electronics A Smart Trip Down Memory Lane! According to Alzheimer’s Disease International, someone in the world develops dementia every 3 seconds. There are over 50 million people worldwide living with dementia in 2020. This number will almost double every 20 years, reaching 82 million in 2030 and 152 million in 2050. Already 60% of people with dementia live in low and middle-income countries, but by 2050 this will rise to 71%. The fastest growth in the elderly population is taking place in Asia and in the Western Pacific. As such, we needed to create a product that can address this problem. The memory arcade game is a game we created that helps trigger the elderly user’s memories of their loved ones in a point-motivated, attention-grabbing, and entertaining way, and reminds them of how to stay safe in times of emergencies, hence helping them recollect past memories, and to ensure their safety at all times. The game caters to a wide audience with a variety of needs – whether they require the questions to be read in a different language, or need the question to be repeated. The game also helps their doctors and caregivers monitor the progression of their disease before taking further actions to aid in preventing the deterioration of their disease, if necessary.