Researchers from the School of Process, Environmental and Materials Engineering have helped to develop an ‘UltraBike’ which uses ultrasound to help blind and visually impaired people to cycle. The UltraBike, which has been the subject of major interest, is now on display at the London Science Museum.
Professor Brian Hoyle and colleagues at Leeds initially used ultrasound to invent the UltraCane aid for blind and visually impaired people. This was recently featured in “Richard Hammond’s Miracles of Nature” BBC1 TV programme, which illustrated how bats, which can fly in complete darkness, inspired this invention.
A challenge on the programme was to see if a blind rider could use similar technology to ride a bike in a wooded environment typically inhabited by bats, which led the creation of a prototype UltraBike.