Innovation is Target of New Partnership Between Purdue and BraunAbility
BraunAbility, a manufacturer of wheelchair-accessible vehicles and wheelchair lift systems based in Lafayette, Ind, recently struck a partnership with Purdue University with the aim of sparking a high level of innovation among mobility products.
The partnership was announced recently in a media release from BraunAbility that notes two projects have been commissioned to improve the overall design, engineering, and safety of commercial wheelchair lift systems. This work is said to represent the beginning of an immersive research and development partnership.
According to the BraunAbility media release, team participation is diverse and cross-functional, with members drawn from areas of North America, India, Taiwan, China, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. The disciplines among which these team members are trained range from engineering and technology to business and industrial design.
“Purdue faculty and students are among the best in the world by any measurement,” says BraunAbility President Nick Gutwein. “Together, we can create breakthrough products in terms of safety and functionality.”
The alliance of the two organizations, both located in northern Indiana, aims to combine human-based research with design aesthetics and state-of-the-art engineering analysis to create a competitively advantaged wheelchair lift for international markets. Purdue University is described in the Braun release as a “worldwide leader” in fluid power, materials science, and advanced manufacturing, each representing future areas of collaboration with BraunAbility as the partnership grows.
The university is said to be committed to global research collaboration, specifically on projects with significant societal impact. Purdue is reported to have formed similar partnerships with other manufacturing leaders, including GE, Boeing, and Caterpillar.
“We are excited about this partnership’s future for both parties, and we are just getting started,” says director of lift product portfolio Phill Bell. “Over time, we will grow our relationship to design and innovate world-class mobility products while also providing real-world educational opportunities for Purdue students.”