ErgoMate: Concept and Prototype of an Automated Ergonomic Workpace System for Office Environments
Authors: Christian Zagel, Matthia Leyendecker, Alexander Piazza
Abstract: In the past decade, globalization and digitization have not only changed the way we work, but also the environment in which we work. More and more companies are introducing desk sharing office concepts in which employees must share a workstation. However, this poses challenges for ergonomic workplace design as constant and ergonomically correct workstation settings can hardly be guaranteed. Neglecting ergonomics at workplace, though, can cause musculoskeletal disorders. Therefore, a concept and prototype for a system are proposed which automatically adjusts the workstation to the individual's anthropometric characteristics. A setup of different mechanical and electronical components using microcontrollers, ultrasonic distance sensors and linear actuators assures an automatic adjustment where users only must sign in with their ID. An initial field study shows that the system can achieve high user acceptance. Simplicity, speed, and convenience are seen as added value of the system. The results have potential for future studies.
Keywords: Ergonomics, Anthropometry, Usability, New Work, Automation, Workplace Intervention
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