Electrical Bicycle

Development of a future electrical bicycle for the aging population


A rather important trend for modern society is the fact that average life expectancy is increased with accelerated pace. Furthermore, the burden of lifetime illness is compressed into a shorter period before the time of a person's death, a statement known as compression of morbidity. As a result, people are capable of being more and more active for longer periods and older ages. Considering as well, the fact that most jobs currently, and most likely in the future, involve a lot of office work sitting still, the need for daily exercise becomes critical in many aspects, especially at older ages.

Biking can bring these facts together since it can be easily integrated into everyday living as transportation mean. At older ages though, conventional bicycles can present usage requirements and side effects that will prevent people from using them. Electrically assisted bicycles, known as Pedelecs, can help overcome a significant amount of negative side effects of conventional bicycle riding and result in more frequent bicycle use either that is for commuting or leisure purposes. The purpose of this thesis work will be to examine the market and the older aged group specific needs and present a Pedelec design that will attract them into bicycle riding. By doing so, people in specific, and societies in general will benefit from an improved well-being.

The project followed a model called the Vision in Product design or, ViP. The model is especially good for a future context with an existing product, which is the case of the project at hand. The model consists of two phases, the deconstruction of the existing situation and then the construction of the future situation. The deconstruction phase is about analyzing and breaking down the existing product qualities, product interaction and context. In this phase a significant amount of information was gathered on technology, manufacturing, rules and regulations, infrastructure and of course the target group. In the construction phase, what is to be offered was thoroughly defined before developing the product. Additional research was made to fill the gap of future technology as the ideation of solutions was made.

The visual expression of the Pedelec was an important part of the bicycle’s design . The expression was defined, the form generative process was conducted and after a series of evaluations and iterations the final design was decided. The final product compensates for many of the age related impairments, beside the obvious physical ones, that the ageing demographic is experiencing today by heightening their situational awareness. The design of the bike has an inviting expression by being exciting, simple and capable. Most of the technology is integrated in the frame and is not visible, making the product less complex visually, something that was considered a big concern of the target group.

Skriv ut Skriv ut