Feels like 65
BaltSe@nioR attempts to confront some of the consequences of the aging society in the Baltic Sea region. Although almost 20% of the EU population is 65 years old or more, and there are some products designed for seniors, this market has not reached its full potential yet. The project addresses a niche in furniture and interior design for seniors in order to trigger innovative and smart solutions that would increase seniors’ comfort and security in their home environment. The project is a joint venture of partners from nine countries (Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Sweden) representing traditional wood and furniture industries but also social sciences, robotics, engineering and Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).
“It is very difficult to imagine what it feels like to be 65 years old or more. That’s why we created a prototype of an age simulator that enables to experience selected physical limitations of an aging human body, for example a different posture, weakened muscles and limited range of motion of arms or legs,” says Dr Beata Fabisiak from Poznań University of Life Sciences, lead partner of the BaltSe@nioR project. “The simulator supports the empathy phase in the product development process. In the following months, we will test it within our Baltic Sea region’s partnership.” Next, the 3D model of the age simulator as well as glasses imitating various eye illnesses typical for an older age will be shared with companies ready to take up the challenge of comprehending and responding to the special needs of the elderly.