A fuzzy logic navigation controller implemented in hardware for an electric wheelchair
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© 2018, © The Author(s) 2018. In this article, we present an obstacle avoidance controller implemented in a field programmable gate array for an electric wheelchair. It is based on a traditional approach with ultrasonic sensors and fuzzy logic. Various tests were conducted to characterize the prototype and to evaluate the controller performance. The results showed that the system is able to acquire data from sensors and make decisions 46.16 times per second. The sensors¿ coverage extends 3 m to the front, rear, left, and right sides of the wheelchair; moreover, the sensors detect 0.95-cm diameter objects at 40 cm. The power consumption was evaluated, and it was found that the hardware architecture reduces the battery life by only 0.87%. Furthermore, the controller helped to navigate in confined areas, avoiding obstacles with cautious movements and decreasing the likelihood of collision. The proposed methodology uses data from eight sonars distributed around the wheelchair to make navigation decisions, besides the hardware-based architecture guarantees real-time control and on-time response.