Multi-finger Grasps in a Dynamic Environment

  • William HarwinEmail author
  • Alastair Barrow
Part of the Springer Series on Touch and Haptic Systems book series (SSTHS)


Most current state-of-the-art haptic devices render only a single force, however almost all human grasps are characterised by multiple forces and torques applied by the fingers and palms of the hand to the object. In this chapter we will begin by considering the different types of grasp and then consider the physics of rigid objects that will be needed for correct haptic rendering. We then describe an algorithm to represent the forces associated with grasp in a natural manner. The power of the algorithm is that it considers only the capabilities of the haptic device and requires no model of the hand, thus applies to most practical grasp types. The technique is sufficiently general that it would also apply to multi-hand interactions, and hence to collaborative interactions where several people interact with the same rigid object. Key concepts in friction and rigid body dynamics are discussed and applied to the problem of rendering multiple forces to allow the person to choose their grasp on a virtual object and perceive the resulting movement via the forces in a natural way. The algorithm also generalises well to support computation of multi-body physics


Grip Force Collision Detection Virtual Object Haptic Device Haptic Interface 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Many individuals have contributed to this work, including technical and academic staff, as well as members of the tHRIL laboratory. The authors are pleased to acknowledge in particular the contributions made by Dr Nic Melder and Mr Sebastian McKnight.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Systems EngineeringUniversity of ReadingReadingUK
  2. 2.Imperial CollegeLondonUK

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