Multi-finger Haptic Displays for Characterization of Hand Response

Chapter
Part of the Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics book series (STAR, volume 95)

Abstract

This chapter will describe some properties of multi-finger haptic interaction and two devices which support it. Multi-finger haptic interaction can involve many contacts with the environment, but can also involve only one contact point when mediated by a tool such as a pen. As multiple fingers interact with the environment, their individual biomechanics and their sensory properties interact to form the net mechano-sensory properties of the interaction. This chapter will look at such interactions in two particular cases, spatially varying stiffness of the pen grasp, and sensory thresholds of multi-finger versus single finger interaction with haptic features. To characterize the stiffness of the pen-like grasp in various directions, we describe experiments in which force steps (randomized in amplitude and direction) were applied to subjects’ pen-like tools in the plane tangential to the tip. From these, the stiffness ellipse could be identified. A dynamical model of the fingers positioned similarly to the user’s grasp was used to predict the stiffness ellipsoids with similar results. The ellipsoids were shown to be a function of the squeezing force with which the subjects performed the grasps. Much of the research on sensitivity and sensory thresholds is based on measurements with a single finger. We developed a multi-finger haptic device (MFHD) to allow two high quality degrees of freedom for each of four fingers in a natural pose. With this device we could compare the sensory thresholds between single finger and multiple finger haptic exploration.

Keywords

Pen-grasp  Pen-based haptic device Multi-finger haptic device Hand impedance/performance 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biorobotics Lab, Department of Electrical EngineeringThe University of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  2. 2.Research & Advanced EngineeringFord Motor CompanyDearbornUSA

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