Dassault Systèmes supports Freedom One Life as it launches its powered wheelchair

Dassault Systèmes has announced that Freedom One Life, who joined the SOLIDWORKS Startup Program, has launched its Series 5 power wheelchair, which aims to disrupt the powered wheelchair market significantly by improving independence and expanding boundaries for power chair users.

The SOLIDWORKS Startup Program is an innovative programme, which offers hardware startups - software, training, and co-marketing resources at no extra cost to help them in their journey to design, develop and to launching the product to market.

Freedom One Life's Series 5 power wheelchair boasts one of the largest batteries found in a powered wheelchair.  This is combined with high-efficiency motors that deliver triple the power of comparable power wheelchairs in the market, allowing users 40 kilometres of real-world range on a single charge. The power wheelchair enables riders to navigate tight spaces, uneven terrain and steep hills through its compact design created for precise manoeuvrability in extreme situations.

“The SOLIDWORKS Startup Program changed the direction for Freedom One Life from its early days by helping us address the challenges in designs and simulate the various mechanical aspects of our power wheelchairs. While prototyping was difficult initially due to the complexity of the products, SOLIDWORKS allowed us to overcome these challenges. The software is one of the most advanced in the market, and we are confident our power wheelchair will change the lives of all its users and enable them to live the life they choose,” said Alex Papanikolaou, founder of Freedom One Life.

SOLIDWORKS was the primary software used during the design process. SOLIDWORKS offered a variety of applications that were invaluable to the design of the Series 5, from basic modelling and surface modelling to sheet metal, machining, casting and simulation. The chair was created to make transportability easier and was specifically designed for air travel. The Series 5 was designed with an onboard charger and a fully customisable and a future-proof user experience. With the use of SOLIDWORKS simulation, the Series 5 received the crash test certification from Cranfield Impact Centre, an independent industry authority, at its first attempt – a remarkable achievement by industry standards.

“We commit to empowering people through the use of our technology across all sectors and industries. These powered wheelchairs have been designed to liberate users who have been limited by the restricted options in the market," said John Kitchingman, Managing Director, EURONORTH, Dassault Systèmes. "Our SOLIDWORKS Startup Program demonstrates how lives can be transformed when SOLIDWORKS technology is used to accelerate innovation and advance the product development process from concept to manufacturing."

Series 5 has gone on sale in the UK since 2023.