TacTiles: Dual-Mode Low-Power Electromagnetic Actuators for Rendering Continuous Contact and Spatial Haptic Patterns in VR

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PubDate: August 2019

Teams: Eidgenossische Technische Hochschule Zurich;Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne

Writers: Velko Vechev; Juan Zarate; David Lindlbauer; Ronan Hinchet; Herbert Shea; Otmar Hilliges

PDF: TacTiles: Dual-Mode Low-Power Electromagnetic Actuators for Rendering Continuous Contact and Spatial Haptic Patterns in VR

Abstract

We introduce TacTiles, light (1.8g), low-power (130 mW), and small form-factor (1 cm 3 ) electromagnetic actuators that can form a flexible haptic array to provide localized tactile feedback. Our novel hardware design uses a custom 8-layer PCB, dampening materials, and asymmetric latching, enabling two distinct modes of actuation: contact and pulse mode. We leverage these modes in Virtual Reality (VR) to render continuous contact with objects and the exploration of object surfaces and volumes with spatial haptic patterns. Results from a series of experiments show that users are able to localize feedback, discriminate between modes with high accuracy, and differentiate objects from haptic surfaces and volumes even without looking at them.

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