The US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) approved the purchase of 2,000 patented shock-absorbing Acrobat wheels over the next three years from Israel’s SoftWheel for disabled vets’ wheelchairs.

The purchase is being facilitated as part of a $4.5 million deal signed between SoftWheel and American wheelchair manufacturer Key Mobility, an approved VA supplier.

Any wheelchair-bound veteran of the US Armed Forces will be entitled to receive a $2,500 set of SoftWheel Acrobat wheels, which can be adjusted to the user’s weight to make the suspension as effective as possible.

The Acrobat wheel incorporates a unique selective suspension mechanism that kicks in when encountering obstacles or bumps such as uneven terrain or curbs, making for a smoother ride and alleviating back and neck pain because the wheels – rather than the chair and rider — absorb the vibration.

Tel Aviv-based SoftWheel was incorporated in 2011 and has distributors in the United States, United Kingdom and Germany, and production facilities in Haifa and Canada. The Key Mobility agreement reportedly is SoftWheel’s largest deal so far.

SoftWheel models for bicycles and cars will be coming next.

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