This is a collaborative project that a medical instrument manufacturer committed to me and my teammates. My team was among the entire development group and we were responsible for industrial design part. The subject is an evolved new version of transfer bed.
The project began with pre-decided inner structure and mechanical engineering. So the main task for the industrial design team was to give the machine a housing. But we weren’t just simply covering the machinery up. We also were considering the visual language and interface layout, as well as the potential conflict between the desired form and inner content. The goal was to enhance its appearance while maintaining its functionality and user experience.
The biggest challenge was about balancing the whole device, both visually and physically, since the upper part is relatively huge and complicated. The upper part contains electrical power system and mechanical transfer system. There is an engine, a retarder and a group of transmission shaft positioned all over the inner space. The model and size of these essential parts had been already fixed so they were beyond our team’s control. The only thing we could do is to slightly rearrange their position inside the housing.
We focused on the base shape trying to counterbalance the feeling of awkwardness caused by the upper part. Not only the visual form need to be balanced, but also the physical weight center need to be calculated and positioned right.
The base we designed imitates and abstracts the shape of a stretched human body. It spreads the weight over 4 legs to gain stability while reducing the size to minimizing the chance of hindering people from walking around it. The two longer legs indicate the direction the bed usually goes toward.