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Sample records for based tongue-placed tactile

  1. Touch sensitive electrorheological fluid based tactile display

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanju; Davidson, Rob; Taylor, Paul

    2005-12-01

    A tactile display is programmable device whose controlled surface is intended to be investigated by human touch. It has a great number of potential applications in the field of virtual reality and elsewhere. In this research, a 5 × 5 tactile display array including electrorheological (ER) fluid has been developed and investigated. Force responses of the tactile display array have been measured while a probe was moved across the upper surface. The purpose of this was to simulate the action of touch performed by human finger. Experimental results show that the sensed surface information could be controlled effectively by adjusting the voltage activation pattern imposed on the tactels. The performance of the tactile display is durable and repeatable. The touch sensitivity of this ER fluid based tactile display array has also been investigated in this research. The results show that it is possible to sense the touching force normal to the display's surface by monitoring the change of current passing through the ER fluid. These encouraging results are helpful for constructing a new type of tactile display based on ER fluid which can act as both sensor and actuator at the same time.

  2. Paper-Based Active Tactile Sensor Array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Qize; Zhong, Junwen; Cheng, Xiaofeng; Yao, Xu; Wang, Bo; Li, Wenbo; Wu, Nan; Liu, Kang; Hu, Bin; Zhou, Jun

    2015-11-25

    A paper-based active tactile sensor -array (PATSA) with a dynamic sensitivity of 0.35 V N(-1) is demonstrated. The pixel position of the PATSA can be routed by analyzing the real-time recording voltages in the pressing process. The PATSA performance, which remains functional when removing partial areas, reveals that the device has a potential application to customized electronic skins. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Nanowire FET Based Neural Element for Robotic Tactile Sensing Skin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Taube Navaraj

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents novel Neural Nanowire Field Effect Transistors (υ-NWFETs based hardware-implementable neural network (HNN approach for tactile data processing in electronic skin (e-skin. The viability of Si nanowires (NWs as the active material for υ-NWFETs in HNN is explored through modeling and demonstrated by fabricating the first device. Using υ-NWFETs to realize HNNs is an interesting approach as by printing NWs on large area flexible substrates it will be possible to develop a bendable tactile skin with distributed neural elements (for local data processing, as in biological skin in the backplane. The modeling and simulation of υ-NWFET based devices show that the overlapping areas between individual gates and the floating gate determines the initial synaptic weights of the neural network - thus validating the working of υ-NWFETs as the building block for HNN. The simulation has been further extended to υ-NWFET based circuits and neuronal computation system and this has been validated by interfacing it with a transparent tactile skin prototype (comprising of 6 × 6 ITO based capacitive tactile sensors array integrated on the palm of a 3D printed robotic hand. In this regard, a tactile data coding system is presented to detect touch gesture and the direction of touch. Following these simulation studies, a four-gated υ-NWFET is fabricated with Pt/Ti metal stack for gates, source and drain, Ni floating gate, and Al2O3 high-k dielectric layer. The current-voltage characteristics of fabricated υ-NWFET devices confirm the dependence of turn-off voltages on the (synaptic weight of each gate. The presented υ-NWFET approach is promising for a neuro-robotic tactile sensory system with distributed computing as well as numerous futuristic applications such as prosthetics, and electroceuticals.

  4. High-Speed Tactile Sensing for Array-Type Tactile Sensor and Object Manipulation Based on Tactile Information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wataru Fukui

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available We have developed a universal robot hand with tactile and other sensors. An array-type tactile sensor is crucial for dexterous manipulation of objects using a robotic hand, since this sensor can measure the pressure distribution on finger pads. The sensor has a very high resolution, and the shape of a grasped object can be classified by using this sensor. The more the number of measurement points provided, the higher the accuracy of the classification, but with a corresponding lengthening of the measurement cycle. In this paper, the problem of slow response time is resolved by using software for an array-type tactile sensor with high resolution that emulates the human sensor system. The validity of the proposed method is demonstrated through experiments.

  5. Fluid-structure interaction-based biomechanical perception model for tactile sensing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zheng Wang

    Full Text Available The reproduced tactile sensation of haptic interfaces usually selectively reproduces a certain object attribute, such as the object's material reflected by vibration and its surface shape by a pneumatic nozzle array. Tactile biomechanics investigates the relation between responses to an external load stimulus and tactile perception and guides the design of haptic interface devices via a tactile mechanism. Focusing on the pneumatic haptic interface, we established a fluid-structure interaction-based biomechanical model of responses to static and dynamic loads and conducted numerical simulation and experiments. This model provides a theoretical basis for designing haptic interfaces and reproducing tactile textures.

  6. Tactile sensor of hardness recognition based on magnetic anomaly detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Lingyun; Zhang, Dongfang; Chen, Qingguang; Rao, Huanle; Xu, Ping

    2018-03-01

    Hardness, as one kind of tactile sensing, plays an important role in the field of intelligent robot application such as gripping, agricultural harvesting, prosthetic hand and so on. Recently, with the rapid development of magnetic field sensing technology with high performance, a number of magnetic sensors have been developed for intelligent application. The tunnel Magnetoresistance(TMR) based on magnetoresistance principal works as the sensitive element to detect the magnetic field and it has proven its excellent ability of weak magnetic detection. In the paper, a new method based on magnetic anomaly detection was proposed to detect the hardness in the tactile way. The sensor is composed of elastic body, ferrous probe, TMR element, permanent magnet. When the elastic body embedded with ferrous probe touches the object under the certain size of force, deformation of elastic body will produce. Correspondingly, the ferrous probe will be forced to displace and the background magnetic field will be distorted. The distorted magnetic field was detected by TMR elements and the output signal at different time can be sampled. The slope of magnetic signal with the sampling time is different for object with different hardness. The result indicated that the magnetic anomaly sensor can recognize the hardness rapidly within 150ms after the tactile moment. The hardness sensor based on magnetic anomaly detection principal proposed in the paper has the advantages of simple structure, low cost, rapid response and it has shown great application potential in the field of intelligent robot.

  7. A ferrofluid based artificial tactile sensor with magnetic field control

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Volkova, T.I., E-mail: tatiana.volkova@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Böhm, V., E-mail: valter.boehm@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Naletova, V.A., E-mail: naletova@imec.msu.ru [Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119991 Moscow (Russian Federation); Kaufhold, T., E-mail: tobias.kaufhold@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Becker, F., E-mail: felix.becker@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Zeidis, I., E-mail: igor.zeidis@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany); Zimmermann, K., E-mail: klaus.zimmermann@tu-ilmenau.de [Technical Mechanics Group, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Ilmenau D-98684 (Germany)

    2017-06-01

    The paper deals with a tactile sensor inspired by biological hairs of mammals. The working principle is based on the effect of the magnetic force exerted on a paramagnetic body submerged into a ferrofluid volume under the influence of a nonuniform magnetic field. The deflection of the sensor's rod caused by external mechanical stimuli may be unambiguously identified by the distortion of the magnetic field, which occurs due to the motion of the attached body in the ferrofluid. The magnetic force acting on the body is evaluated experimentally and theoretically for the nonuniform magnetic field of a permanent magnet. The controlled oscillations of the rod are realised by applying a nonuniform magnetic field of periodically altering direction. - Highlights: • A design approach of a tactile sensor inspired by special mammalian hairs is presented. • The working principle is based on magnetic properties of a ferrofluid in magnetic fields. • The magnetic force acting on a body submerged into a ferrofluid volume is evaluated. • External mechanical stimuli may be identified by the distortion of the magnetic field. • The controlled whisking-like oscillations of the sensor's rod are realised experimentally.

  8. A ferrofluid based artificial tactile sensor with magnetic field control

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Volkova, T.I.; Böhm, V.; Naletova, V.A.; Kaufhold, T.; Becker, F.; Zeidis, I.; Zimmermann, K.

    2017-01-01

    The paper deals with a tactile sensor inspired by biological hairs of mammals. The working principle is based on the effect of the magnetic force exerted on a paramagnetic body submerged into a ferrofluid volume under the influence of a nonuniform magnetic field. The deflection of the sensor's rod caused by external mechanical stimuli may be unambiguously identified by the distortion of the magnetic field, which occurs due to the motion of the attached body in the ferrofluid. The magnetic force acting on the body is evaluated experimentally and theoretically for the nonuniform magnetic field of a permanent magnet. The controlled oscillations of the rod are realised by applying a nonuniform magnetic field of periodically altering direction. - Highlights: • A design approach of a tactile sensor inspired by special mammalian hairs is presented. • The working principle is based on magnetic properties of a ferrofluid in magnetic fields. • The magnetic force acting on a body submerged into a ferrofluid volume is evaluated. • External mechanical stimuli may be identified by the distortion of the magnetic field. • The controlled whisking-like oscillations of the sensor's rod are realised experimentally.

  9. Design Methodology for Magnetic Field-Based Soft Tri-Axis Tactile Sensors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hongbo; de Boer, Greg; Kow, Junwai; Alazmani, Ali; Ghajari, Mazdak; Hewson, Robert; Culmer, Peter

    2016-08-24

    Tactile sensors are essential if robots are to safely interact with the external world and to dexterously manipulate objects. Current tactile sensors have limitations restricting their use, notably being too fragile or having limited performance. Magnetic field-based soft tactile sensors offer a potential improvement, being durable, low cost, accurate and high bandwidth, but they are relatively undeveloped because of the complexities involved in design and calibration. This paper presents a general design methodology for magnetic field-based three-axis soft tactile sensors, enabling researchers to easily develop specific tactile sensors for a variety of applications. All aspects (design, fabrication, calibration and evaluation) of the development of tri-axis soft tactile sensors are presented and discussed. A moving least square approach is used to decouple and convert the magnetic field signal to force output to eliminate non-linearity and cross-talk effects. A case study of a tactile sensor prototype, MagOne, was developed. This achieved a resolution of 1.42 mN in normal force measurement (0.71 mN in shear force), good output repeatability and has a maximum hysteresis error of 3.4%. These results outperform comparable sensors reported previously, highlighting the efficacy of our methodology for sensor design.

  10. Fabrication of strain gauge based sensors for tactile skins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baptist, Joshua R.; Zhang, Ruoshi; Wei, Danming; Saadatzi, Mohammad Nasser; Popa, Dan O.

    2017-05-01

    Fabricating cost effective, reliable and functional sensors for electronic skins has been a challenging undertaking for the last several decades. Application of such skins include haptic interfaces, robotic manipulation, and physical human-robot interaction. Much of our recent work has focused on producing compliant sensors that can be easily formed around objects to sense normal, tension, or shear forces. Our past designs have involved the use of flexible sensors and interconnects fabricated on Kapton substrates, and piezoresistive inks that are 3D printed using Electro Hydro Dynamic (EHD) jetting onto interdigitated electrode (IDE) structures. However, EHD print heads require a specialized nozzle and the application of a high-voltage electric field; for which, tuning process parameters can be difficult based on the choice of inks and substrates. Therefore, in this paper we explore sensor fabrication techniques using a novel wet lift-off photolithographic technique for patterning the base polymer piezoresistive material, specifically Poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-poly(styrenesulfonate) or PEDOT:PSS. Fabricated sensors are electrically and thermally characterized, and temperaturecompensated designs are proposed and validated. Packaging techniques for sensors in polymer encapsulants are proposed and demonstrated to produce a tactile interface device for a robot.

  11. The Design of a Novel Flexible Tactile Sensor Based on Pressure-conductive Rubber

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Xu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available A novel flexible tactile sensor using conductive rubber with electrical-wires knitted method is presented. The sensor’s design is based on rubber’s pressure-sensitive property. It is flexible and can be mounted on any object to measure tactile information. The mathematic piezoresistivity model of the rubber is described, and we also discuss the sensor’s structure and scanning method. The simulation results show that the sensor can detect pressure accurately.

  12. A novel flexible tactile sensor based on Ce-doped BaTiO3 nanofibers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Yongyong; Xu, Zhuo; Fu, Xiaotian; Li, Fei; Li, Jinglei; Liao, Zhipeng; Liu, Weihua

    2017-07-01

    The performance of a robotic hand is severely limited by the tactile feedback information similar to a human hand. Hence, a novel and robust tactile sensor has been developed to cope with the challenge of robotic hand technology. Piezoelectric material is proposed as a suitable candidate for a new efficient tactile sensor due to its excellent piezoelectric properties. In this paper, a novel flexible tactile sensor based on Ce-doped BTO nanofibers was developed. The doping mechanism of cerium ions and the working process of the sensor were analysed. The results showed that sheer stress had no contribution to the sensor, this indicated that the sensor was easy to control according to the individual’s wish. The output voltage of the sensor could reach up to 0.078 V which showed great potential for the future of intelligent robot skin application.

  13. A systems based experimental approach to tactile friction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Masen, Marc Arthur

    2011-01-01

    This work focuses on the friction in contacts where the human finger pad is one of the interacting surfaces. This ‘tactile friction’ requires a full understanding of the contact mechanics and the behaviour of human skin. The coefficient of friction cannot be considered as a property of the skin

  14. Flexible Tactile Sensing Based on Piezoresistive Composites: A Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stassi, Stefano; Cauda, Valentina; Canavese, Giancarlo; Pirri, Candido Fabrizio

    2014-01-01

    The large expansion of the robotic field in the last decades has created a growing interest in the research and development of tactile sensing solutions for robot hand and body integration. Piezoresistive composites are one of the most widely employed materials for this purpose, combining simple and low cost preparation with high flexibility and conformability to surfaces, low power consumption, and the use of simple read-out electronics. This work provides a review on the different type of composite materials, classified according to the conduction mechanism and analyzing the physics behind it. In particular piezoresistors, strain gauges, percolative and quantum tunnelling devices are reviewed here, with a perspective overview on the most used filler types and polymeric matrices. A description of the state-of-the-art of the tactile sensor solutions from the point of view of the architecture, the design and the performance is also reviewed, with a perspective outlook on the main promising applications. PMID:24638126

  15. E-Pad: a comfortable electrocutaneous-based tactile feedback display

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jiabin; Zhao, Lu; Liu, Yue; Wang, Yongtian; Cai, Yi

    2018-01-01

    The devices with touchscreen are becoming more popular recently; however, most of them suffer from the crucial drawbacks of lacking accurate tactile feedback. A novel electrocutaneous-based tactile device with the name of E-pad is proposed to provide a dynamic and static low-voltage feedback for touchscreen. We optimize the key parameters of the output voltage and design custom-made hardwares to guarantee a comfortable user experience. Users could move their fingers freely across the touchscreen of the proposed device to really feel virtual objects. Two preliminary experiments are conducted to evaluate the interactive performance of the proposed device and the experimental results show that the proposed device can provide a comfortable and distinct tactile feedback.

  16. Investigation of the touch sensitivity of ER fluid based tactile display

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanju; Davidson, Rob; Taylor, Paul

    2005-05-01

    A tactile display is programmable device whose controlled surface is intended to be investigated by human touch. It has a great number of potential applications in the field of virtual reality and elsewhere. In this research, a 5x5 touch sensitive tactile display array including electrorheological (ER) fluid has been developed and investigated. Experimental results show that the sensed surface information could be controlled effectively by adjusting the voltage activation pattern imposed on the tactels. In the meantime, it is possible to sense the touching force normal to the display"s surface by monitoring the change of current passing through the ER fluid. These encouraging results are helpful for constructing a new type of tactile display based on ER fluid which can act as both sensor and actuator at the same time.

  17. Functional and Structural Neuroplasticity Induced by Short-Term Tactile Training Based on Braille Reading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debowska, Weronika; Wolak, Tomasz; Nowicka, Anna; Kozak, Anna; Szwed, Marcin; Kossut, Malgorzata

    2016-01-01

    Neuroplastic changes induced by sensory learning have been recognized within the cortices of specific modalities as well as within higher ordered multimodal areas. The interplay between these areas is not fully understood, particularly in the case of somatosensory learning. Here we examined functional and structural changes induced by short-term tactile training based of Braille reading, a task that requires both significant tactile expertise and mapping of tactile input onto multimodal representations. Subjects with normal vision were trained for 3 weeks to read Braille exclusively by touch and scanned before and after training, while performing a same-different discrimination task on Braille characters and meaningless characters. Functional and diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging sequences were used to assess resulting changes. The strongest training-induced effect was found in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI), where we observed bilateral augmentation in activity accompanied by an increase in fractional anisotropy (FA) within the contralateral SI. Increases of white matter fractional anisotropy were also observed in the secondary somatosensory area (SII) and the thalamus. Outside of somatosensory system, changes in both structure and function were found in i.e., the fusiform gyrus, the medial frontal gyri and the inferior parietal lobule. Our results provide evidence for functional remodeling of the somatosensory pathway and higher ordered multimodal brain areas occurring as a result of short-lasting tactile learning, and add to them a novel picture of extensive white matter plasticity.

  18. Precise shape reconstruction by active pattern in total-internal-reflection-based tactile sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saga, Satoshi; Taira, Ryosuke; Deguchi, Koichiro

    2014-03-01

    We are developing a total-internal-reflection-based tactile sensor in which the shape is reconstructed using an optical reflection. This sensor consists of silicone rubber, an image pattern, and a camera. It reconstructs the shape of the sensor surface from an image of a pattern reflected at the inner sensor surface by total internal reflection. In this study, we propose precise real-time reconstruction by employing an optimization method. Furthermore, we propose to use active patterns. Deformation of the reflection image causes reconstruction errors. By controlling the image pattern, the sensor reconstructs the surface deformation more precisely. We implement the proposed optimization and active-pattern-based reconstruction methods in a reflection-based tactile sensor, and perform reconstruction experiments using the system. A precise deformation experiment confirms the linearity and precision of the reconstruction.

  19. Research of a Novel Three-dimensional Force Flexible Tactile Sensor Based on Conductive Rubber

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fei Xu

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available A novel three-dimensional force flexible tactile sensor using conductive rubber with "overall injection molding" technique is presented. The sensor is based on conductive rubber’s force-sensitive property. The sensor is flexible and can measure 3-D force. The rubber’s characteristics, the sensor’s structure and its principle are described. The results of simulation will be also presented.

  20. Neurosurgical tactile discrimination training with haptic-based virtual reality simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Achal; Koshy, Nick; Ortega-Barnett, Juan; Chan, Hoi C; Kuo, Yong-Fan; Luciano, Cristian; Rizzi, Silvio; Matulyauskas, Martin; Kania, Patrick; Banerjee, Pat; Gasco, Jaime

    2014-12-01

    To determine if a computer-based simulation with haptic technology can help surgical trainees improve tactile discrimination using surgical instruments. Twenty junior medical students participated in the study and were randomized into two groups. Subjects in Group A participated in virtual simulation training using the ImmersiveTouch simulator (ImmersiveTouch, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA) that required differentiating the firmness of virtual spheres using tactile and kinesthetic sensation via haptic technology. Subjects in Group B did not undergo any training. With their visual fields obscured, subjects in both groups were then evaluated on their ability to use the suction and bipolar instruments to find six elastothane objects with areas ranging from 1.5 to 3.5 cm2 embedded in a urethane foam brain cavity model while relying on tactile and kinesthetic sensation only. A total of 73.3% of the subjects in Group A (simulation training) were able to find the brain cavity objects in comparison to 53.3% of the subjects in Group B (no training) (P  =  0.0183). There was a statistically significant difference in the total number of Group A subjects able to find smaller brain cavity objects (size ≤ 2.5 cm2) compared to that in Group B (72.5 vs. 40%, P  =  0.0032). On the other hand, no significant difference in the number of subjects able to detect larger objects (size ≧ 3 cm2) was found between Groups A and B (75 vs. 80%, P  =  0.7747). Virtual computer-based simulators with integrated haptic technology may improve tactile discrimination required for microsurgical technique.

  1. The potential for developing a tactile communication system based on Blissymbolics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaacson, Mick D; Lloyd, Lyle L

    2015-02-01

    To be useful for tactile communication, tactile stimuli need to be discriminable from each other. The objective of this study was to determine whether raised-line renderings of Blissymbols have the capacity for being developed into a tactile communication system as measured by their tactile discriminability. Tactile discrimination of Blissymbols was measured by performance on a task in which participants were asked to feel a target raised-line Blissymbol and then to find the target within an array containing the target and raised-line Blissymbol foils. The vast majority of tactile Blissymbols had tactile discrimination scores of 90% accuracy or better. Most raised-line Blissymbols can be tactilely discriminated from each other, indicating that they have the potential for being developed into a tactile communication system.

  2. Performance of Brain-computer Interfacing based on tactile selective sensation and motor imagery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yao, Lin; Sheng, Xinjun; Mrachacz-Kersting, Natalie

    2018-01-01

    We proposed a multi-class tactile brain-computer interface that utilizes stimulus-induced oscillatory dynamics. It was hypothesized that somatosensory attention can modulate tactile induced oscillation changes, which can decode different sensation attention tasks. Subjects performed four tactile...

  3. Magnetic resonance imaging-compatible tactile sensing device based on a piezoelectric array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamed, Abbi; Masamune, Ken; Tse, Zion Tsz Ho; Lamperth, Michael; Dohi, Takeyoshi

    2012-07-01

    Minimally invasive surgery is a widely used medical technique, one of the drawbacks of which is the loss of direct sense of touch during the operation. Palpation is the use of fingertips to explore and make fast assessments of tissue morphology. Although technologies are developed to equip minimally invasive surgery tools with haptic feedback capabilities, the majority focus on tissue stiffness profiling and tool-tissue interaction force measurement. For greatly increased diagnostic capability, a magnetic resonance imaging-compatible tactile sensor design is proposed, which allows minimally invasive surgery to be performed under image guidance, combining the strong capability of magnetic resonance imaging soft tissue and intuitive palpation. The sensing unit is based on a piezoelectric sensor methodology, which conforms to the stringent mechanical and electrical design requirements imposed by the magnetic resonance environment The sensor mechanical design and the device integration to a 0.2 Tesla open magnetic resonance imaging scanner are described, together with the device's magnetic resonance compatibility testing. Its design limitations and potential future improvements are also discussed. A tactile sensing unit based on a piezoelectric sensor principle is proposed, which is designed for magnetic resonance imaging guided interventions.

  4. Evaluation of the MEMS based portable respiratory training system with a tactile sensor for respiratory-gated radiotherapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moon, Sun Young; Yoon, Myonggeun; Chung, Mijoo; Chung, Weon Kuu; Kim, Dong Wook

    2017-10-01

    In respiratory-gated radiotherapy, it is important to maintain the regular respiratory cycles of patients. If patients undergo respiration training, their regular breathing pattern is affected. Therefore, we developed a respiratory training system based on a micro electromechanical system (MEMS) and evaluated the feasibility of the MEMS in radiotherapy. By comparing the measured signal before and after radiation exposure, we confirmed the effects of radiation. By evaluating the period of the electric signal emitted by a tactile sensor and its constancy, the performance of the tactile sensor was confirmed. Moreover, by comparing the delay between the motion of the MEMS and the electric signal from the tactile sensor, we confirmed the reaction time of the tactile sensor. The results showed that a baseline shift occurred for an accumulated dose of 400 Gy in the sensor, and both the amplitude and period changed. The period of the signal released by the tactile sensor was 5.39 and its standard deviation was 0.06. Considering the errors from the motion phantom, a standard deviation of 0.06 was desirable. The delay time was within 0.5 s and not distinguishable by a patient. We confirmed the performance of the MEMS and concluded that MEMS could be applied to patients for respiratory-gated radiotherapy.

  5. Driving Interface Based on Tactile Sensors for Electric Wheelchairs or Trolleys

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés Trujillo-León

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces a novel device based on a tactile interface to replace the attendant joystick in electric wheelchairs. It can also be used in other vehicles such as shopping trolleys. Its use allows intuitive driving that requires little or no training, so its usability is high. This is achieved by a tactile sensor located on the handlebar of the chair or trolley and the processing of the information provided by it. When the user interacts with the handle of the chair or trolley, he or she exerts a pressure pattern that depends on the intention to accelerate, brake or turn to the left or right. The electronics within the device then perform the signal conditioning and processing of the information received, identifying the intention of the user on the basis of this pattern using an algorithm, and translating it into control signals for the control module of the wheelchair. These signals are equivalent to those provided by a joystick. This proposal aims to help disabled people and their attendees and prolong the personal autonomy in a context of aging populations.

  6. Bio-Inspired PVDF-Based, Mouse Whisker Mimicking, Tactile Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohsin Islam Tiwana

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The design and fabrication of a Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF based, mouse (or rodent whisker mimicking, tactile sensor is presented. Unlike previous designs reported in the literature, this sensor mimics the mouse whisker not only mechanically, but it also makes macro movements just like a real mouse whisker in a natural environment. We have developed a mathematical model and performed finite element analysis using COMSOL, in order to optimise the whisker to have the same natural frequency as that of a biological whisker. Similarly, we have developed a control system that enables the whisker mimicking sensor to vibrate at variable frequencies and conducted practical experiments to validate the response of the sensor. The natural frequency of the whisker can be designed anywhere between 35 and 110 Hz, the same as a biological whisker, by choosing different materials and physical dimensions. The control system of this sensor enables the whisker to vibrate between 5 and 236 Hz.

  7. The output characteristic of cantilever-like tactile sensor based on the inverse magnetostrictive effect

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lili Wan

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The output characteristic model of a magnetostrictive cantilever-like tactile sensor has been founded based on the inverse-magnetostrictive effect, the flexure mode, and the Jiles-Atherton model. The magnetostrictive sensor has been designed and an output voltage is analyzed under the conditions of bias magnetic field, contact pressure and deflection of cantilever beam. The experiment has been performed to determine the relation among the induced output voltage, bias magnetic field, and pressure. It is found that the peak of the induced output voltage increases with an increasing pressure under the bias magnetic field of 4.8kA/m. The experimental result agrees well with the theoretical one and it means that the model can describe the relation among the induced output voltage, bias magnetic field, and pressure. The sensor with a Galfenol sheet may hold potentials in sample characterization and deformation predication in artificial intelligence area.

  8. Enhanced Motor Imagery-Based BCI Performance via Tactile Stimulation on Unilateral Hand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaokang Shu

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Brain-computer interface (BCI has attracted great interests for its effectiveness in assisting disabled people. However, due to the poor BCI performance, this technique is still far from daily-life applications. One of critical issues confronting BCI research is how to enhance BCI performance. This study aimed at improving the motor imagery (MI based BCI accuracy by integrating MI tasks with unilateral tactile stimulation (Uni-TS. The effects were tested on both healthy subjects and stroke patients in a controlled study. Twenty-two healthy subjects and four stroke patients were recruited and randomly divided into a control-group and an enhanced-group. In the control-group, subjects performed two blocks of conventional MI tasks (left hand vs. right hand, with 80 trials in each block. In the enhanced-group, subjects also performed two blocks of MI tasks, but constant tactile stimulation was applied on the non-dominant/paretic hand during MI tasks in the second block. We found the Uni-TS significantly enhanced the contralateral cortical activations during MI of the stimulated hand, whereas it had no influence on activation patterns during MI of the non-stimulated hand. The two-class BCI decoding accuracy was significantly increased from 72.5% (MI without Uni-TS to 84.7% (MI with Uni-TS in the enhanced-group (p < 0.001, paired t-test. Moreover, stroke patients in the enhanced-group achieved an accuracy >80% during MI with Uni-TS. This novel approach complements the conventional methods for BCI enhancement without increasing source information or complexity of signal processing. This enhancement via Uni-TS may facilitate clinical applications of MI-BCI.

  9. A silicon-based flexible tactile sensor for ubiquitous robot companion applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Kunnyun; Lee, Kang Ryeol; Lee, Dae Sung; Cho, Nam-Kyu; Kim, Won Hyo; Park, Kwang-Bum; Park, Hyo-Derk; Kim, Yong Kook; Park, Yon-Kyu; Kim, Jong-Ho

    2006-01-01

    We present the fabrication process and characteristics of a 3-axes flexible tactile sensor available for normal and shear mode fabricated using Si micromachining and packaging technologies. The fabrication processes for the 3 axes flexible tactile sensor were classified in the fabrication of sensor chips and their packaging on the flexible PCB. The variation rate of resistance was about 2.1%/N and 0.5%/N in applying normal and shear force, respectively. Because this tactile sensor can measure the variations of resistance of the semiconductor strain gauge for normal and shear force, it can be used to sense touch, pressure, hardness, and slip

  10. Recent Progress in Technologies for Tactile Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xuguang; Xue, Ning; Li, Tong; Liu, Chang

    2018-01-01

    Over the last two decades, considerable scientific and technological efforts have been devoted to developing tactile sensing based on a variety of transducing mechanisms, with prospective applications in many fields such as human–machine interaction, intelligent robot tactile control and feedback, and tactile sensorized minimally invasive surgery. This paper starts with an introduction of human tactile systems, followed by a presentation of the basic demands of tactile sensors. State-of-the-art tactile sensors are reviewed in terms of their diverse sensing mechanisms, design consideration, and material selection. Subsequently, typical performances of the sensors, along with their advantages and disadvantages, are compared and analyzed. Two major potential applications of tactile sensing systems are discussed in detail. Lastly, we propose prospective research directions and market trends of tactile sensing systems. PMID:29565835

  11. Introducing the tactile speller: an ERP-based brain-computer interface for communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Waal, Marjolein; Severens, Marianne; Geuze, Jeroen; Desain, Peter

    2012-08-01

    In this study, a tactile speller was developed and compared with existing visual speller paradigms in terms of classification performance and elicited event-related potentials (ERPs). The fingertips of healthy participants were stimulated with short mechanical taps while electroencephalographic activity was measured. The letters of the alphabet were allocated to different fingers and subjects could select one of the fingers by silently counting the number of taps on that finger. The offline and online performance of the tactile speller was compared to the overt and covert attention visual matrix speller and the covert attention Hex-o-Spell speller. For the tactile speller, binary target versus non-target classification accuracy was 67% on average. Classification and decoding accuracies of the tactile speller were lower than the overt matrix speller, but higher than the covert matrix speller, and similar to Hex-o-Spell. The average maximum information transfer rate of the tactile speller was 7.8 bits min-1 (1.51 char min-1), with the best subject reaching a bit-rate of 27 bits min-1 (5.22 char min-1). An increased amplitude of the P300 ERP component was found in response to attended stimuli versus unattended stimuli in all speller types. In addition, the tactile and overt matrix spellers also used the N2 component for discriminating between targets and non-targets. Overall, this study shows that it is possible to use a tactile speller for communication. The tactile speller provides a useful alternative to the visual speller, especially for people whose eye gaze is impaired.

  12. A droplet-based passive force sensor for remote tactile sensing applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nie, Baoqing; Yao, Ting; Zhang, Yiqiu; Liu, Jian; Chen, Xinjian

    2018-01-01

    A droplet-based flexible wireless force sensor has been developed for remote tactile-sensing applications. By integration of a droplet-based capacitive sensing unit and two circular planar coils, this inductor-capacitor (LC) passive sensor offers a platform for the mechanical force detection in a wireless transmitting mode. Under external loads, the membrane surface of the sensor deforms the underlying elastic droplet uniformly, introducing a capacitance response in tens of picofarads. The LC circuit transduces the applied force into corresponding variations of its resonance frequency, which is detected by an external electromagnetic coupling coil. Specifically, the liquid droplet features a mechanosensitive plasticity, which results in an increased device sensitivity as high as 2.72 MHz N-1. The high dielectric property of the droplet endows our sensor with high tolerance for noise and large capacitance values (20-40 pF), the highest value in the literature for the LC passive devices in comparable dimensions. It achieves excellent reproducibility under periodical loads ranging from 0 to 1.56 N and temperature fluctuations ranging from 10 °C to 55 °C. As an interesting conceptual demonstration, the flexible device has been configured into a fingertip-amounted setting in a highly compact package (of 11 mm × 11 mm × 0.25 mm) for remote contact force sensing in the table tennis game.

  13. Parallelism measurement for base plate of standard artifact with multiple tactile approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Xiuling; Zhao, Yan; Wang, Yiwen; Wang, Zhong; Fu, Luhua; Liu, Changjie

    2018-01-01

    Nowadays, as workpieces become more precise and more specialized which results in more sophisticated structures and higher accuracy for the artifacts, higher requirements have been put forward for measuring accuracy and measuring methods. As an important method to obtain the size of workpieces, coordinate measuring machine (CMM) has been widely used in many industries. In order to achieve the calibration of a self-developed CMM, it is found that the parallelism of the base plate used for fixing the standard artifact is an important factor which affects the measurement accuracy in the process of studying self-made high-precision standard artifact. And aimed to measure the parallelism of the base plate, by using the existing high-precision CMM, gauge blocks, dial gauge and marble platform with the tactile approach, three methods for parallelism measurement of workpieces are employed, and comparisons are made within the measurement results. The results of experiments show that the final accuracy of all the three methods is able to reach micron level and meets the measurement requirements. Simultaneously, these three approaches are suitable for different measurement conditions which provide a basis for rapid and high-precision measurement under different equipment conditions.

  14. Tactile Aids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohtaramossadat Homayuni

    1996-04-01

    Full Text Available Tactile aids, which translate sound waves into vibrations that can be felt by the skin, have been used for decades by people with severe/profound hearing loss to enhance speech/language development and improve speechreading.The development of tactile aids dates from the efforts of Goults and his co-workers in the 1920s; Although The power supply was too voluminous and it was difficult to carry specially by children, it was too huge and heavy to be carried outside the laboratories and its application was restricted to the experimental usage. Nowadays great advances have been performed in producing this instrument and its numerous models is available in markets around the world.

  15. Low-Resolution Tactile Image Recognition for Automated Robotic Assembly Using Kernel PCA-Based Feature Fusion and Multiple Kernel Learning-Based Support Vector Machine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi-Hung Liu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we propose a robust tactile sensing image recognition scheme for automatic robotic assembly. First, an image reprocessing procedure is designed to enhance the contrast of the tactile image. In the second layer, geometric features and Fourier descriptors are extracted from the image. Then, kernel principal component analysis (kernel PCA is applied to transform the features into ones with better discriminating ability, which is the kernel PCA-based feature fusion. The transformed features are fed into the third layer for classification. In this paper, we design a classifier by combining the multiple kernel learning (MKL algorithm and support vector machine (SVM. We also design and implement a tactile sensing array consisting of 10-by-10 sensing elements. Experimental results, carried out on real tactile images acquired by the designed tactile sensing array, show that the kernel PCA-based feature fusion can significantly improve the discriminating performance of the geometric features and Fourier descriptors. Also, the designed MKL-SVM outperforms the regular SVM in terms of recognition accuracy. The proposed recognition scheme is able to achieve a high recognition rate of over 85% for the classification of 12 commonly used metal parts in industrial applications.

  16. A multifunctional PVDF-based tactile sensor for minimally invasive surgery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokhanvar, S.; Packirisamy, M.; Dargahi, J.

    2007-08-01

    In this paper a multifunctional tactile sensor system using PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride), is proposed, designed, analyzed, tested and validated. The working principle of the sensor is in such a way that it can be used in combination with almost any end-effectors. However, the sensor is particularly designed to be integrated with minimally invasive surgery (MIS) tools. In addition, the structural and transduction materials are selected to be compatible with micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) technology, so that miniaturization would be possible. The corrugated shape of the sensor ensures the safe tissue grasping and compatibility with the traditional tooth-like end effectors of MIS tools. A unit of this sensor comprised of a base, a flexible beam and three PVDF sensing elements. Two PVDF sensing elements sandwiched at the end supports work in thickness mode to measure the magnitude and position of applied load. The third PVDF sensing element is attached to the beam and it works in the extensional mode to measure the softness of the contact object. The proposed sensor is modeled both analytically and numerically and a series of simulations are performed in order to estimate the characteristics of the sensor in measuring the magnitude and position of a point load, distributed load, and also the softness of the contact object. Furthermore, in order to validate the theoretical results, the prototyped sensor was tested and the results are compared. The results are very promising and proving the capability of the sensor for haptic sensing.

  17. An Extreme Learning Machine-Based Neuromorphic Tactile Sensing System for Texture Recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasouli, Mahdi; Chen, Yi; Basu, Arindam; Kukreja, Sunil L; Thakor, Nitish V

    2018-04-01

    Despite significant advances in computational algorithms and development of tactile sensors, artificial tactile sensing is strikingly less efficient and capable than the human tactile perception. Inspired by efficiency of biological systems, we aim to develop a neuromorphic system for tactile pattern recognition. We particularly target texture recognition as it is one of the most necessary and challenging tasks for artificial sensory systems. Our system consists of a piezoresistive fabric material as the sensor to emulate skin, an interface that produces spike patterns to mimic neural signals from mechanoreceptors, and an extreme learning machine (ELM) chip to analyze spiking activity. Benefiting from intrinsic advantages of biologically inspired event-driven systems and massively parallel and energy-efficient processing capabilities of the ELM chip, the proposed architecture offers a fast and energy-efficient alternative for processing tactile information. Moreover, it provides the opportunity for the development of low-cost tactile modules for large-area applications by integration of sensors and processing circuits. We demonstrate the recognition capability of our system in a texture discrimination task, where it achieves a classification accuracy of 92% for categorization of ten graded textures. Our results confirm that there exists a tradeoff between response time and classification accuracy (and information transfer rate). A faster decision can be achieved at early time steps or by using a shorter time window. This, however, results in deterioration of the classification accuracy and information transfer rate. We further observe that there exists a tradeoff between the classification accuracy and the input spike rate (and thus energy consumption). Our work substantiates the importance of development of efficient sparse codes for encoding sensory data to improve the energy efficiency. These results have a significance for a wide range of wearable, robotic

  18. A Tactile Carina Nebula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grice, Noreen A.; Mutchler, M.

    2010-01-01

    Astronomy was once considered a science restricted to fully sighted participants. But in the past two decades, accessible books with large print/Braille and touchable pictures have brought astronomy and space science to the hands and mind's eye of students, regardless of their visual ability. A new universally-designed tactile image featuring the Hubble mosaic of the Carina Nebula is being presented at this conference. The original dataset was obtained with Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) hydrogen-alpha filter in 2005. It became an instant icon after being infused with additional color information from ground-based CTIO data, and released as Hubble's 17th anniversary image. Our tactile Carina Nebula promotes multi-mode learning about the entire life-cycle of stars, which is dramatically illustrated in this Hubble mosaic. When combined with descriptive text in print and Braille, the visual and tactile components seamlessly reach both sighted and blind populations. Specific touchable features of the tactile image identify the shapes and orientations of objects in the Carina Nebula that include star-forming regions, jets, pillars, dark and light globules, star clusters, shocks/bubbles, the Keyhole Nebula, and stellar death (Eta Carinae). Visit our poster paper to touch the Carina Nebula!

  19. Tactile-Sight: A Sensory Substitution Device Based on Distance-Related Vibrotactile Flow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leandro Cancar

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Sensory substitution is a research field of increasing interest with regard to technical, applied and theoretical issues. Among the latter, it is of central interest to understand the form in which humans perceive the environment. Ecological psychology, among other approaches, proposes that we can detect higher-order informational variables (in the sense that they are defined over substantial spatial and temporal intervals that specify our interaction with the environment. When using a vibrotactile sensory substitution device, it is reasonable to ask if stimulation on the skin may be exploitable to detect higher-order variables. Motivated by this question, a portable vibrotactile sensory substitution device was built, using distance-based information as a source and driving a large number of vibrotactile actuators (72 in the reported version, 120 max. The portable device was designed to explore real environments, allowing natural unrestricted movement for the user while providing contingent real-time vibrotactile information. Two preliminary experiments were performed. In the first one, participants were asked to detect the time to contact of an approaching ball in a simulated (desktop environment. Reasonable performance was observed in all experimental conditions, including the one with only tactile stimulation. In the second experiment, a portable version of the device was used in a real environment, where participants were asked to hit an approaching ball. Participants were able to coordinate their arm movements with vibrotactile stimulation in appropriate timing. We conclude that vibrotactile flow can be generated by distance-based activation of the actuators and that this stimulation on the skin allows users to perceive time-to-contact related environmental properties.

  20. Stereo camera based virtual cane system with identifiable distance tactile feedback for the blind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Donghun; Kim, Kwangtaek; Lee, Sangyoun

    2014-06-13

    In this paper, we propose a new haptic-assisted virtual cane system operated by a simple finger pointing gesture. The system is developed by two stages: development of visual information delivery assistant (VIDA) with a stereo camera and adding a tactile feedback interface with dual actuators for guidance and distance feedbacks. In the first stage, user's pointing finger is automatically detected using color and disparity data from stereo images and then a 3D pointing direction of the finger is estimated with its geometric and textural features. Finally, any object within the estimated pointing trajectory in 3D space is detected and the distance is then estimated in real time. For the second stage, identifiable tactile signals are designed through a series of identification experiments, and an identifiable tactile feedback interface is developed and integrated into the VIDA system. Our approach differs in that navigation guidance is provided by a simple finger pointing gesture and tactile distance feedbacks are perfectly identifiable to the blind.

  1. Stereo Camera Based Virtual Cane System with Identifiable Distance Tactile Feedback for the Blind

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donghun Kim

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we propose a new haptic-assisted virtual cane system operated by a simple finger pointing gesture. The system is developed by two stages: development of visual information delivery assistant (VIDA with a stereo camera and adding a tactile feedback interface with dual actuators for guidance and distance feedbacks. In the first stage, user’s pointing finger is automatically detected using color and disparity data from stereo images and then a 3D pointing direction of the finger is estimated with its geometric and textural features. Finally, any object within the estimated pointing trajectory in 3D space is detected and the distance is then estimated in real time. For the second stage, identifiable tactile signals are designed through a series of identification experiments, and an identifiable tactile feedback interface is developed and integrated into the VIDA system. Our approach differs in that navigation guidance is provided by a simple finger pointing gesture and tactile distance feedbacks are perfectly identifiable to the blind.

  2. Artificial Roughness Encoding with a Bio-inspired MEMS-based Tactile Sensor Array

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calogero Maria Oddo

    2009-04-01

    Full Text Available A compliant 2x2 tactile sensor array was developed and investigated for roughness encoding. State of the art cross shape 3D MEMS sensors were integrated with polymeric packaging providing in total 16 sensitive elements to external mechanical stimuli in an area of about 20 mm2, similarly to the SA1 innervation density in humans. Experimental analysis of the bio-inspired tactile sensor array was performed by using ridged surfaces, with spatial periods from 2.6 mm to 4.1 mm, which were indented with regulated 1N normal force and stroked at constant sliding velocity from 15 mm/s to 48 mm/s. A repeatable and expected frequency shift of the sensor outputs depending on the applied stimulus and on its scanning velocity was observed between 3.66 Hz and 18.46 Hz with an overall maximum error of 1.7%. The tactile sensor could also perform contact imaging during static stimulus indentation. The experiments demonstrated the suitability of this approach for the design of a roughness encoding tactile sensor for an artificial fingerpad.

  3. Self-powered, ultra-sensitive, flexible tactile sensors based on contact electrification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhong Lin; Zhu, Guang

    2018-03-20

    A tactile sensor for sensing touch from a human finger includes a triboelectric layer and includes a material that becomes electrically charged after being in contact with the finger. The first side of a first conductive layer is in contact with the second side of triboelectric layer. The first side of a dielectric layer is in contact with the first conductive layer and the second side of the dielectric layer is in contact with a second conductive layer. When the triboelectric layer becomes electrically charged after being in contact with the finger, the first conductive layer and the second conductive layer are subjected to an electric field, which has a first field strength at the first conductive layer and a second field strength, different from the first field strength, at the second conductive layer. A plurality of tactile sensors can be arranged as a keyboard.

  4. Perception-Based Tactile Soft Keyboard for the Touchscreen of Tablets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kwangtaek Kim

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Most mobile devices equipped with touchscreens provide on-screen soft keyboard as an input method. However, many users are experiencing discomfort due to lack of physical feedback that causes slow typing speed and error-prone typing, as compared to the physical keyboard. To solve the problem, a platform-independent haptic soft keyboard suitable for tablet-sized touchscreens was proposed and developed. The platform-independent haptic soft keyboard was verified on both Android and Windows. In addition, a psychophysical experiment has been conducted to find an optimal strength of key click feedback on touchscreens, and the perception result was applied for making uniform tactile forces on touchscreens. The developed haptic soft keyboard can be easily integrated with existing tablets by putting the least amount of effort. The evaluation results confirm platform independency, fast tactile key click feedback, and uniform tactile force distribution on touchscreen with using only two piezoelectric actuators. The proposed system was developed on a commercial tablet (Mu Pad that has dual platforms (Android and Windows.

  5. Depth camera-based 3D hand gesture controls with immersive tactile feedback for natural mid-air gesture interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Kwangtaek; Kim, Joongrock; Choi, Jaesung; Kim, Junghyun; Lee, Sangyoun

    2015-01-08

    Vision-based hand gesture interactions are natural and intuitive when interacting with computers, since we naturally exploit gestures to communicate with other people. However, it is agreed that users suffer from discomfort and fatigue when using gesture-controlled interfaces, due to the lack of physical feedback. To solve the problem, we propose a novel complete solution of a hand gesture control system employing immersive tactile feedback to the user's hand. For this goal, we first developed a fast and accurate hand-tracking algorithm with a Kinect sensor using the proposed MLBP (modified local binary pattern) that can efficiently analyze 3D shapes in depth images. The superiority of our tracking method was verified in terms of tracking accuracy and speed by comparing with existing methods, Natural Interaction Technology for End-user (NITE), 3D Hand Tracker and CamShift. As the second step, a new tactile feedback technology with a piezoelectric actuator has been developed and integrated into the developed hand tracking algorithm, including the DTW (dynamic time warping) gesture recognition algorithm for a complete solution of an immersive gesture control system. The quantitative and qualitative evaluations of the integrated system were conducted with human subjects, and the results demonstrate that our gesture control with tactile feedback is a promising technology compared to a vision-based gesture control system that has typically no feedback for the user's gesture inputs. Our study provides researchers and designers with informative guidelines to develop more natural gesture control systems or immersive user interfaces with haptic feedback.

  6. Depth Camera-Based 3D Hand Gesture Controls with Immersive Tactile Feedback for Natural Mid-Air Gesture Interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kwangtaek Kim

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Vision-based hand gesture interactions are natural and intuitive when interacting with computers, since we naturally exploit gestures to communicate with other people. However, it is agreed that users suffer from discomfort and fatigue when using gesture-controlled interfaces, due to the lack of physical feedback. To solve the problem, we propose a novel complete solution of a hand gesture control system employing immersive tactile feedback to the user’s hand. For this goal, we first developed a fast and accurate hand-tracking algorithm with a Kinect sensor using the proposed MLBP (modified local binary pattern that can efficiently analyze 3D shapes in depth images. The superiority of our tracking method was verified in terms of tracking accuracy and speed by comparing with existing methods, Natural Interaction Technology for End-user (NITE, 3D Hand Tracker and CamShift. As the second step, a new tactile feedback technology with a piezoelectric actuator has been developed and integrated into the developed hand tracking algorithm, including the DTW (dynamic time warping gesture recognition algorithm for a complete solution of an immersive gesture control system. The quantitative and qualitative evaluations of the integrated system were conducted with human subjects, and the results demonstrate that our gesture control with tactile feedback is a promising technology compared to a vision-based gesture control system that has typically no feedback for the user’s gesture inputs. Our study provides researchers and designers with informative guidelines to develop more natural gesture control systems or immersive user interfaces with haptic feedback.

  7. The interaction between felt touch and tactile consequences of observed actions: an action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deschrijver, Eliane; Wiersema, Jan R; Brass, Marcel

    2016-07-01

    Action observation leads to a representation of both the motor aspect of an observed action (motor simulation) and its somatosensory consequences (action-based somatosensory simulation) in the observer's brain. In the current electroencephalography-study, we investigated the neuronal interplay of action-based somatosensory simulation and felt touch. We presented index or middle finger tapping movements of a human or a wooden hand, while simultaneously presenting 'tap-like' tactile sensations to either the corresponding or non-corresponding fingertip of the participant. We focused on an early stage of somatosensory processing [P50, N100 and N140 sensory evoked potentials (SEPs)] and on a later stage of higher-order processing (P3-complex). The results revealed an interaction effect of animacy and congruency in the early P50 SEP and an animacy effect in the N100/N140 SEPs. In the P3-complex, we found an interaction effect indicating that the influence of congruency was larger in the human than in the wooden hand. We argue that the P3-complex may reflect higher-order self-other distinction by signaling simulated action-based touch that does not match own tactile information. As such, the action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm might help understand higher-order social processes from a somatosensory point of view. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Optical-to-Tactile Translator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langevin, Maurice L. (Inventor); Moynihan, Philip I. (Inventor)

    2000-01-01

    An optical-to-tactile translator provides an aid for the visually impaired by translating a near-field scene to a tactile signal corresponding to said near-field scene. An optical sensor using a plurality of active pixel sensors (APS) converts the optical image within the near-field scene to a digital signal. The digital signal is then processed by a microprocessor and a simple shape signal is generated based on the digital signal. The shape signal is then communicated to a tactile transmitter where the shape signal is converted into a tactile signal using a series of contacts. The shape signal may be an outline of the significant shapes determined in the near-field scene, or the shape signal may comprise a simple symbolic representation of common items encountered repeatedly. The user is thus made aware of the unseen near-field scene, including potential obstacles and dangers, through a series of tactile contacts. In a preferred embodiment, a range determining device such as those commonly found on auto-focusing cameras is included to limit the distance that the optical sensor interprets the near-field scene.

  9. High Resolution Flexible Tactile Sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Bilberg, Arne

    2011-01-01

    both spatial distribution of pressure and dynamic events such as contact, release of contact and slip. Data acquisition and object recognition applications are described and it is proposed that such a sensor could be used in robotic grippers to improve object recognition, manipulation of objects......This paper describes the development of a tactile sensor for robotics inspired by the human sense of touch. It consists of two parts: a static tactile array sensor based on piezoresistive rubber and a dynamic sensor based on piezoelectric PVDF film. The combination of these two layers addresses...

  10. Novel Tactile Sensor Technology and Smart Tactile Sensing Systems: A Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Liang; Ge, Chang; Wang, Z Jane; Cretu, Edmond; Li, Xiaoou

    2017-11-17

    During the last decades, smart tactile sensing systems based on different sensing techniques have been developed due to their high potential in industry and biomedical engineering. However, smart tactile sensing technologies and systems are still in their infancy, as many technological and system issues remain unresolved and require strong interdisciplinary efforts to address them. This paper provides an overview of smart tactile sensing systems, with a focus on signal processing technologies used to interpret the measured information from tactile sensors and/or sensors for other sensory modalities. The tactile sensing transduction and principles, fabrication and structures are also discussed with their merits and demerits. Finally, the challenges that tactile sensing technology needs to overcome are highlighted.

  11. Novel Tactile Sensor Technology and Smart Tactile Sensing Systems: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liang Zou

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available During the last decades, smart tactile sensing systems based on different sensing techniques have been developed due to their high potential in industry and biomedical engineering. However, smart tactile sensing technologies and systems are still in their infancy, as many technological and system issues remain unresolved and require strong interdisciplinary efforts to address them. This paper provides an overview of smart tactile sensing systems, with a focus on signal processing technologies used to interpret the measured information from tactile sensors and/or sensors for other sensory modalities. The tactile sensing transduction and principles, fabrication and structures are also discussed with their merits and demerits. Finally, the challenges that tactile sensing technology needs to overcome are highlighted.

  12. A Two-Ply Polymer-Based Flexible Tactile Sensor Sheet Using Electric Capacitance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shijie Guo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Traditional capacitive tactile sensor sheets usually have a three-layered structure, with a dielectric layer sandwiched by two electrode layers. Each electrode layer has a number of parallel ribbon-like electrodes. The electrodes on the two electrode layers are oriented orthogonally and each crossing point of the two perpendicular electrode arrays makes up a capacitive sensor cell on the sheet. It is well known that compatibility between measuring precision and resolution is difficult, since decreasing the width of the electrodes is required to obtain a high resolution, however, this may lead to reduction of the area of the sensor cells, and as a result, lead to a low Signal/Noise (S/N ratio. To overcome this problem, a new multilayered structure and related calculation procedure are proposed. This new structure stacks two or more sensor sheets with shifts in position. Both a high precision and a high resolution can be obtained by combining the signals of the stacked sensor sheets. Trial production was made and the effect was confirmed.

  13. Age-related loss in attention-based modulation of tactile stimuli at early stages of somatosensory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolton, David A E; Staines, W Richard

    2012-06-01

    Normal aging has been linked to impairments in gating of irrelevant sensory information and neural markers of diminished cognitive processing. Whilst much of the research in this area has focussed on visual and auditory modalities it is unclear to what degree these findings apply to somatosensation. Therefore we investigated how age impacts early event-related potentials (ERPs) arising from relevant or irrelevant vibrotactile stimuli to the fingertips. Specifically, we hypothesised that older adults would demonstrate reduced attention-based modulation of tactile ERPs generated at early stages of cortical somatosensory processing. In accord with previous research we also expected to observe diminished P300 responses to attended targets and behavioural deficits. Participants received vibrotactile stimulation to the second and fifth digit on the left hand and reported target stimuli on one digit only (as instructed) with comparisons between two age groups: (1) Young adults (age range 20-39) and (2) Older adults (age range 62-89). ERP amplitudes for the P50, N70, P100, N140 and long latency positivity (LLP) were quantified for attended and non-attended trials at several electrodes (C4, CP4, CP3 and FC4). The P300 in response to attended target stimuli was measured at CPZ. There was no effect of attention on the P50 and N70 however the P100, N140 and LLP were modulated with attention. In both age groups the P100 and LLP were more positive during trials where the stimuli were attended to, whilst the N140 was enhanced for non-attended stimuli. Comparisons between groups revealed a reduction in P100 attention-based modulation for the older adults versus the young adults. This effect was due to a loss of suppression of the non-attended stimuli in older subjects. Moreover, the P300 was both slower and reduced in peak amplitude for older subjects in response to attended targets. Finally, older adults demonstrated impaired performance in terms of both reduced target detection

  14. Development of flexible array tactile sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Marian, Nicolae; Bilberg, Arne

    2010-01-01

    time data acquisition system scans all the cells and converts electrical resistance to tactile pressure maps. We validate that this information can be used to improve grasping and perform object recognition. Key words: piezoresistivity, tactile, sensor, pressure, robotics......In this paper we describe the development of an array tactile sensor for use in robotic grippers based on a flexible piezoresistive material. We start by comparing different cell structures in terms of output characteristics and we construct an array of cells in a row and columns layout. A real...

  15. Parameter estimation of brain tumors using intraoperative thermal imaging based on artificial tactile sensing in conjunction with artificial neural network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sadeghi-Goughari, M; Mojra, A; Sadeghi, S

    2016-01-01

    Intraoperative Thermal Imaging (ITI) is a new minimally invasive diagnosis technique that can potentially locate margins of brain tumor in order to achieve maximum tumor resection with least morbidity. This study introduces a new approach to ITI based on artificial tactile sensing (ATS) technology in conjunction with artificial neural networks (ANN) and feasibility and applicability of this method in diagnosis and localization of brain tumors is investigated. In order to analyze validity and reliability of the proposed method, two simulations were performed. (i) An in vitro experimental setup was designed and fabricated using a resistance heater embedded in agar tissue phantom in order to simulate heat generation by a tumor in the brain tissue; and (ii) A case report patient with parafalcine meningioma was presented to simulate ITI in the neurosurgical procedure. In the case report, both brain and tumor geometries were constructed from MRI data and tumor temperature and depth of location were estimated. For experimental tests, a novel assisted surgery robot was developed to palpate the tissue phantom surface to measure temperature variations and ANN was trained to estimate the simulated tumor’s power and depth. Results affirm that ITI based ATS is a non-invasive method which can be useful to detect, localize and characterize brain tumors. (paper)

  16. Tactile Evaluation Feedback System for Multi-Layered Structure Inspired by Human Tactile Perception Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iza Husna Mohamad Hashim

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Tactile sensation is one type of valuable feedback in evaluating a product. Conventionally, sensory evaluation is used to get direct subjective responses from the consumers, in order to improve the product’s quality. However, this method is a time-consuming and costly process. Therefore, this paper proposes a novel tactile evaluation system that can give tactile feedback from a sensor’s output. The main concept of this system is hierarchically layering the tactile sensation, which is inspired by the flow of human perception. The tactile sensation is classified from low-order of tactile sensation (LTS to high-order of tactile sensation (HTS, and also to preference. Here, LTS will be correlated with physical measures. Furthermore, the physical measures that are used to correlate with LTS are selected based on four main aspects of haptic information (roughness, compliance, coldness, and slipperiness, which are perceived through human tactile sensors. By using statistical analysis, the correlation between each hierarchy was obtained, and the preference was derived in terms of physical measures. A verification test was conducted by using unknown samples to determine the reliability of the system. The results showed that the system developed was capable of estimating preference with an accuracy of approximately 80%.

  17. Tactile Evaluation Feedback System for Multi-Layered Structure Inspired by Human Tactile Perception Mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashim, Iza Husna Mohamad; Kumamoto, Shogo; Takemura, Kenjiro; Maeno, Takashi; Okuda, Shin; Mori, Yukio

    2017-11-11

    Tactile sensation is one type of valuable feedback in evaluating a product. Conventionally, sensory evaluation is used to get direct subjective responses from the consumers, in order to improve the product's quality. However, this method is a time-consuming and costly process. Therefore, this paper proposes a novel tactile evaluation system that can give tactile feedback from a sensor's output. The main concept of this system is hierarchically layering the tactile sensation, which is inspired by the flow of human perception. The tactile sensation is classified from low-order of tactile sensation (LTS) to high-order of tactile sensation (HTS), and also to preference. Here, LTS will be correlated with physical measures. Furthermore, the physical measures that are used to correlate with LTS are selected based on four main aspects of haptic information (roughness, compliance, coldness, and slipperiness), which are perceived through human tactile sensors. By using statistical analysis, the correlation between each hierarchy was obtained, and the preference was derived in terms of physical measures. A verification test was conducted by using unknown samples to determine the reliability of the system. The results showed that the system developed was capable of estimating preference with an accuracy of approximately 80%.

  18. The tactile movement aftereffect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollins, M; Favorov, O

    1994-01-01

    The existence of a tactile movement aftereffect was established in a series of experiments on the palmar surface of the hand and fingers of psychophysical observers. During adaptation, observers cupped their hand around a moving drum for up to 3 min; following this period of stimulation, they typically reported an aftereffect consisting of movement sensations located on and deep to the skin, and lasting for up to 1 min. Preliminary experiments comparing a number of stimulus materials mounted on the drum demonstrated that a surface approximating a low-spatial-frequency square wave, with a smooth microtexture, was especially effective at inducing the aftereffect; this adapting stimulus was therefore used throughout the two main experiments. In Experiment 1, the vividness of the aftereffect produced by 2 min of adaptation was determined under three test conditions: with the hand (1) remaining on the now stationary drum; (2) in contact with a soft, textured surface; or (3) suspended in air. Subjects' free magnitude estimates of the peak vividness of the aftereffect were not significantly different across conditions; each subject experienced the aftereffect at least once under each condition. Thus the tactile movement aftereffect does not seem to depend critically on the ponditions of stimulation that obtain while it is being experienced. In Experiment 2, the vividness and duration of the aftereffect were measured as a function of the duration of the adapting stimulus. Both measures increased steadily over the range of durations explored (30-180 sec). In its dependence on adapting duration, the aftereffect resembles the waterfall illusion in vision. An explanation for the tactile movement aftereffect is proposed, based on the model of cortical dynamics of Whitsel et al. (1989, 1991). With assumed modest variation of one parameter across individuals, this application of the model is able to account both for the data of the majority of subjects, who experienced the

  19. Condition Assessment of Foundation Piles and Utility Poles Based on Guided Wave Propagation Using a Network of Tactile Transducers and Support Vector Machines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrike Dackermann

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel non-destructive testing and health monitoring system using a network of tactile transducers and accelerometers for the condition assessment and damage classification of foundation piles and utility poles. While in traditional pile integrity testing an impact hammer with broadband frequency excitation is typically used, the proposed testing system utilizes an innovative excitation system based on a network of tactile transducers to induce controlled narrow-band frequency stress waves. Thereby, the simultaneous excitation of multiple stress wave types and modes is avoided (or at least reduced, and targeted wave forms can be generated. The new testing system enables the testing and monitoring of foundation piles and utility poles where the top is inaccessible, making the new testing system suitable, for example, for the condition assessment of pile structures with obstructed heads and of poles with live wires. For system validation, the new system was experimentally tested on nine timber and concrete poles that were inflicted with several types of damage. The tactile transducers were excited with continuous sine wave signals of 1 kHz frequency. Support vector machines were employed together with advanced signal processing algorithms to distinguish recorded stress wave signals from pole structures with different types of damage. The results show that using fast Fourier transform signals, combined with principal component analysis as the input feature vector for support vector machine (SVM classifiers with different kernel functions, can achieve damage classification with accuracies of 92.5% ± 7.5%.

  20. Instrumental tactile diagnostics in robot-assisted surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Solodova RF

    2016-10-01

    boundaries were not visually detectable, instrumental tactile diagnostics performed using MTEC provided valid identification and localization of lesions. The results of instrumental tactile diagnostics were concordant with the results of intraoperative ultrasound examination. However, in certain cases, for example, thoracoscopy, ultrasound examination is inapplicable, while MTEC-based tactile diagnostics can be efficiently utilized. Conclusion: The study proved that MTEC can be efficiently used in robot-assisted surgery allowing correct localization of visually undetectable lesions and visually undetectable boundaries of pathological changes of tissues. Keywords: tactile feedback, instrumental palpation, Medical Tactile Endosurgical Complex, tactile lesion localization

  1. Bioinspired electronic white cane implementation based on a LIDAR, a tri-axial accelerometer and a tactile belt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallejà, Tomàs; Tresanchez, Marcel; Teixidó, Mercè; Palacin, Jordi

    2010-01-01

    This work proposes the creation of a bioinspired electronic white cane for blind people using the whiskers principle for short-range navigation and exploration. Whiskers are coarse hairs of an animal's face that tells the animal that it has touched something using the nerves of the skin. In this work the raw data acquired from a low-size terrestrial LIDAR and a tri-axial accelerometer is converted into tactile information using several electromagnetic devices configured as a tactile belt. The LIDAR and the accelerometer are attached to the user's forearm and connected with a wire to the control unit placed on the belt. Early validation experiments carried out in the laboratory are promising in terms of usability and description of the environment.

  2. Bioinspired Electronic White Cane Implementation Based on a LIDAR, a Tri-Axial Accelerometer and a Tactile Belt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Palacin

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available This work proposes the creation of a bioinspired electronic white cane for blind people using the whiskers principle for short-range navigation and exploration. Whiskers are coarse hairs of an animal's face that tells the animal that it has touched something using the nerves of the skin. In this work the raw data acquired from a low-size terrestrial LIDAR and a tri-axial accelerometer is converted into tactile information using several electromagnetic devices configured as a tactile belt. The LIDAR and the accelerometer are attached to the user’s forearm and connected with a wire to the control unit placed on the belt. Early validation experiments carried out in the laboratory are promising in terms of usability and description of the environment.

  3. Exploring the use of tactile feedback in an ERP-based auditory BCI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schreuder, Martijn; Thurlings, Marieke E; Brouwer, Anne-Marie; Van Erp, Jan B F; Tangermann, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Giving direct, continuous feedback on a brain state is common practice in motor imagery based brain-computer interfaces (BCI), but has not been reported for BCIs based on event-related potentials (ERP), where feedback is only given once after a sequence of stimuli. Potentially, direct feedback could allow the user to adjust his strategy during a running trial to obtain the required response. In order to test the usefulness of such feedback, directionally congruent vibrotactile feedback was given during an online auditory BCI experiment. Users received either no feedback, short feedback pulses or continuous feedback. The feedback conditions showed reduced performance both on a behavioral task and in terms of classification accuracy. Several explanations are discussed that give interesting starting points for further research on this topic.

  4. Towards the Tactile Internet

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Szabó, Dávid; Gulyás, András; Fitzek, Frank

    2015-01-01

    5G communication networks enable the steering and control of Internet of Things and therefore require extreme low latency communication referred to as the tactile Internet. In this paper we show that the massive use of network coding throughout the network significantly improves latency and reduce...... the frequency of packet re-transmission, so an architecture built around network coding may be a feasible road towards realizing the tactile internet vision. Our contribution is threefold: (i) we show how network coding improves latency and reduces packet re-transmission with respect to other coding schemes...

  5. Vertically stacked nanocellulose tactile sensor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Minhyun; Kim, Kyungkwan; Kim, Bumjin; Lee, Kwang-Jae; Kang, Jae-Wook; Jeon, Sanghun

    2017-11-16

    Paper-based electronic devices are attracting considerable attention, because the paper platform has unique attributes such as flexibility and eco-friendliness. Here we report on what is claimed to be the firstly fully integrated vertically-stacked nanocellulose-based tactile sensor, which is capable of simultaneously sensing temperature and pressure. The pressure and temperature sensors are operated using different principles and are stacked vertically, thereby minimizing the interference effect. For the pressure sensor, which utilizes the piezoresistance principle under pressure, the conducting electrode was inkjet printed on the TEMPO-oxidized-nanocellulose patterned with micro-sized pyramids, and the counter electrode was placed on the nanocellulose film. The pressure sensor has a high sensitivity over a wide range (500 Pa-3 kPa) and a high durability of 10 4 loading/unloading cycles. The temperature sensor combines various materials such as poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene)-poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS), silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) and carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to form a thermocouple on the upper nanocellulose layer. The thermoelectric-based temperature sensors generate a thermoelectric voltage output of 1.7 mV for a temperature difference of 125 K. Our 5 × 5 tactile sensor arrays show a fast response, negligible interference, and durable sensing performance.

  6. Tactile Data Entry System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Richard J.

    2015-01-01

    The patent-pending Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO) design leverages extravehicular activity (EVA) glove design features as platforms for instrumentation and tactile feedback, enabling the gloves to function as human-computer interface devices. Flexible sensors in each finger enable control inputs that can be mapped to any number of functions (e.g., a mouse click, a keyboard strike, or a button press). Tracking of hand motion is interpreted alternatively as movement of a mouse (change in cursor position on a graphical user interface) or a change in hand position on a virtual keyboard. Programmable vibro-tactile actuators aligned with each finger enrich the interface by creating the haptic sensations associated with control inputs, such as recoil of a button press.

  7. Compliant Tactile Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Jara, Eduardo R.

    2011-01-01

    Tactile sensors are currently being designed to sense interactions with human hands or pen-like interfaces. They are generally embedded in screens, keyboards, mousepads, and pushbuttons. However, they are not well fitted to sense interactions with all kinds of objects. A novel sensor was originally designed to investigate robotics manipulation where not only the contact with an object needs to be detected, but also where the object needs to be held and manipulated. This tactile sensor has been designed with features that allow it to sense a large variety of objects in human environments. The sensor is capable of detecting forces coming from any direction. As a result, this sensor delivers a force vector with three components. In contrast to most of the tactile sensors that are flat, this one sticks out from the surface so that it is likely to come in contact with objects. The sensor conforms to the object with which it interacts. This augments the contact's surface, consequently reducing the stress applied to the object. This feature makes the sensor ideal for grabbing objects and other applications that require compliance with objects. The operational range of the sensor allows it to operate well with objects found in peoples' daily life. The fabrication of this sensor is simple and inexpensive because of its compact mechanical configuration and reduced electronics. These features are convenient for mass production of individual sensors as well as dense arrays. The biologically inspired tactile sensor is sensitive to both normal and lateral forces, providing better feedback to the host robot about the object to be grabbed. It has a high sensitivity, enabling its use in manipulation fingers, which typically have low mechanical impedance in order to be very compliant. The construction of the sensor is simple, using inexpensive technologies like silicon rubber molding and standard stock electronics.

  8. Meet our Neighbours - a tactile experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canas, L.; Lobo Correia, A.

    2013-09-01

    Planetary science is a key field in astronomy that draws lots of attention and that engages large amounts of enthusiasts. On its essence, it is a visual science and the current resources and activities for the inclusion of visually impaired children, although increasing, are still costly and somewhat scarce. Therefore there is a paramount need to develop more low cost resources in order to provide experiences that can reach all, even the more socially deprived communities. "Meet our neighbours!-a tactile experience", plans to promote and provide inclusion activities for visually impaired children and their non-visually impaired peers through the use of astronomy hands-on low cost activities. Is aimed for children from the ages of 6 to 12 years old and produce data set 13 tactile images of the main objects of the Solar System that can be used in schools, science centres and outreach associations. Accessing several common problems through tactile resources, with this project we present ways to successfully provide low cost solutions (avoiding the expensive tactile printing costs), promote inclusion and interactive hands-on activities for visually impaired children and their non-visually impaired peers and create dynamic interactions based on oral knowledge transmission between them. Here we describe the process of implementing such initiative near target communities: establishing a bridge between scientists, children and teachers. The struggles and challenges perceived during the project and the enrichment experience of engaging astronomy with these specific groups, broadening horizons in an overall experience accessible to all.

  9. Optical Three-Axis Tactile Sensor for Robotic Fingers

    OpenAIRE

    Ohka, Masahiro; Takata, Jumpei; Kobayashi, Hiroaki; Suzuki, Hirofumi; Morisawa, Nobuyuki; Yussof, Hanafiah Bin

    2008-01-01

    A new three-axis tactile sensor to be mounted on multi-fingered hands is developed based on the principle of an optical waveguide-type tactile sensor comprised of an acrylic hemispherical dome, a light source, an array of rubber sensing elements, and a CCD camera. The sensing element of the present tactile sensor includes one columnar feeler and eight conical feelers. A three-axis force applied to the tip of the sensing element is detected by the contact areas of the conical feelers, which ma...

  10. Mechanisms of tactile sensory deterioration amongst the elderly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skedung, Lisa; El Rawadi, Charles; Arvidsson, Martin; Farcet, Céline; Luengo, Gustavo S; Breton, Lionel; Rutland, Mark W

    2018-04-19

    It is known that roughness-smoothness, hardness-softness, stickiness-slipperiness and warm-cold are predominant perceptual dimensions in macro-, micro- and nano- texture perception. However, it is not clear to what extent active tactile texture discrimination remains intact with age. The general decrease in tactile ability induces physical and emotional dysfunction in elderly, and has increasing significance for an aging population. We report a method to quantify tactile acuity based on blinded active exploration of systematically varying micro-textured surfaces and a same-different paradigm. It reveals that elderly participants show significantly reduced fine texture discrimination ability. The elderly group also displays statistically lower finger friction coefficient, moisture and elasticity, suggesting a link. However, a subpopulation of the elderly retains discrimination ability irrespective of cutaneous condition and this can be related to a higher density of somatosensory receptors on the finger pads. Skin tribology is thus not the primary reason for decline of tactile discrimination with age. The remediation of cutaneous properties through rehydration, however leads to a significantly improved tactile acuity. This indicates unambiguously that neurological tactile loss can be temporarily compensated by restoring the cutaneous contact mechanics. Such mechanical restoration of tactile ability has the potential to increase the quality of life in elderly.

  11. Tactile-STAR: A Novel Tactile STimulator And Recorder System for Evaluating and Improving Tactile Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballardini, Giulia; Carlini, Giorgio; Giannoni, Psiche; Scheidt, Robert A; Nisky, Ilana; Casadio, Maura

    2018-01-01

    Many neurological diseases impair the motor and somatosensory systems. While several different technologies are used in clinical practice to assess and improve motor functions, somatosensation is evaluated subjectively with qualitative clinical scales. Treatment of somatosensory deficits has received limited attention. To bridge the gap between the assessment and training of motor vs. somatosensory abilities, we designed, developed, and tested a novel, low-cost, two-component (bimanual) mechatronic system targeting tactile somatosensation: the Tactile-STAR -a tactile stimulator and recorder. The stimulator is an actuated pantograph structure driven by two servomotors, with an end-effector covered by a rubber material that can apply two different types of skin stimulation: brush and stretch. The stimulator has a modular design, and can be used to test the tactile perception in different parts of the body such as the hand, arm, leg, big toe, etc. The recorder is a passive pantograph that can measure hand motion using two potentiometers. The recorder can serve multiple purposes: participants can move its handle to match the direction and amplitude of the tactile stimulator, or they can use it as a master manipulator to control the tactile stimulator as a slave. Our ultimate goal is to assess and affect tactile acuity and somatosensory deficits. To demonstrate the feasibility of our novel system, we tested the Tactile-STAR with 16 healthy individuals and with three stroke survivors using the skin-brush stimulation. We verified that the system enables the mapping of tactile perception on the hand in both populations. We also tested the extent to which 30 min of training in healthy individuals led to an improvement of tactile perception. The results provide a first demonstration of the ability of this new system to characterize tactile perception in healthy individuals, as well as a quantification of the magnitude and pattern of tactile impairment in a small cohort of

  12. Bodily illusions disrupt tactile sensations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Pritchett, Lisa M; Harris, Laurence R

    2015-02-01

    To accurately interpret tactile information, the brain needs to have an accurate representation of the body to which to refer the sensations. Despite this, body representation has only recently been incorporated into the study of tactile perception. Here, we investigate whether distortions of body representation affect tactile sensations. We perceptually altered the length of the arm and the width of the waist using a tendon vibration illusion and measured spatial acuity and sensitivity. Surprisingly, we found reduction in both tactile acuity and sensitivity thresholds when the arm or waist was perceptually altered, which indicates a general disruption of low-level tactile processing. We postulate that the disruptive changes correspond to the preliminary stage as the body representation starts to change and may give new insights into sensory processing in people with long-term or sudden abnormal body representation such as are found in eating disorders or following amputation.

  13. Bayesian Alternation During Tactile Augmentation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caspar Mathias Goeke

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available A large number of studies suggest that the integration of multisensory signals by humans is well described by Bayesian principles. However, there are very few reports about cue combination between a native and an augmented sense. In particular, we asked the question whether adult participants are able to integrate an augmented sensory cue with existing native sensory information. Hence for the purpose of this study we build a tactile augmentation device. Consequently, we compared different hypotheses of how untrained adult participants combine information from a native and an augmented sense. In a two-interval forced choice (2 IFC task, while subjects were blindfolded and seated on a rotating platform, our sensory augmentation device translated information on whole body yaw rotation to tactile stimulation. Three conditions were realized: tactile stimulation only (augmented condition, rotation only (native condition, and both augmented and native information (bimodal condition. Participants had to choose one out of two consecutive rotations with higher angular rotation. For the analysis, we fitted the participants’ responses with a probit model and calculated the just notable difference (JND. Then we compared several models for predicting bimodal from unimodal responses. An objective Bayesian alternation model yielded a better prediction (χred2 = 1.67 than the Bayesian integration model (χred2= 4.34. Slightly higher accuracy showed a non-Bayesian winner takes all model (χred2= 1.64, which either used only native or only augmented values per subject for prediction. However the performance of the Bayesian alternation model could be substantially improved (χred2= 1.09 utilizing subjective weights obtained by a questionnaire. As a result, the subjective Bayesian alternation model predicted bimodal performance most accurately among all tested models. These results suggest that information from augmented and existing sensory modalities in

  14. Tactile score a knowledge media for tactile sense

    CERN Document Server

    Suzuki, Yasuhiro

    2014-01-01

    This book deals with one of the most novel advances in natural computing, namely, in the field of tactile sense analysis. Massage, which provides relaxation and stimulation for human beings, is analyzed in this book for the first time by encoding the motions and tactile senses involved. The target audience is not limited to researchers who are interested in natural computing but also includes those working in ergonomic design, biomedical engineering, Kansei engineering, and cognitive science.

  15. Intuitive tactile algorithms to guide blind runners by means of a belt with vibrators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durá-Gil, Juan V; Bazuelo-Ruiz, Bruno; Mollà, Fernando; Barberà-Guillem, Ricard; Jakab, Àgnes; Csielka, Tamás

    2015-01-01

    Visually impaired people do not have equal possibilities to practice sports. In the case of running they need a sighted guide. This paper compare different possibilities for indicating direction to blind people by means of a belt that transmits tactile messages, and defines design requirements based on anthropometric analysis. The results shows that intuitive tactile messages are achieved with tactile stimuli applied in the ventral section, from the iliac crests to the navel.

  16. Tactile Stimulation and Consumer Response.

    OpenAIRE

    Hornik, Jacob

    1992-01-01

    Tactile behavior is a basic communication form as well as an expression of interpersonal involvement. This article presents three studies offering evidence for the positive role of casual interpersonal touch on consumer behavior. More specifically, it provides initial support for the view that tactile stimulation in various consumer behavior situations enhances the positive feeling for and evaluation of both the external stimuli and the touching source. Further, customers touched by a request...

  17. A Case Study of Tactile Language and its Possible Structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dammeyer, Jesper Herup; Nielsen, Anja; Strøm, Emilie

    2015-01-01

    Few published research papers concern the study of communication and language development among children with congenital deafblindness. The aim of this study is to explore and discuss linguistic features of what may be considered as tactile languages. By analysing one pilot video observation of a...... on direction, speed and acceleration of movements, pressure, and body position. It is discussed how tactile languages, if they exist, can be studied from its unique bodily-tactile nature and not as a modification of visual sign languages.......Few published research papers concern the study of communication and language development among children with congenital deafblindness. The aim of this study is to explore and discuss linguistic features of what may be considered as tactile languages. By analysing one pilot video observation...... of a five year old congenital deafblind child communicating with his mother about a slide experience tactile linguistic features of phonology, morphology, semantics and syntax were explored. The linguistic features of tactile language were found to involve a potential unique and complex structure based...

  18. Contralateral tactile masking between forearms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Harris, Laurence R

    2014-03-01

    Masking effects have been demonstrated in which tactile sensitivity is affected when one touch is close to another on the body surface. Such effects are likely a result of local lateral inhibitory circuits that sharpen the spatial tuning of a given tactile receptor. Mutually inhibitory pathways have also been demonstrated between cortical tactile maps of the two halves of the body. Occasional reports have indicated that touches on one hand or forearm can affect tactile sensitivity at contralateral locations. Here, we measure the spatial tuning and effect of posture on this contralateral masking effect. Tactile sensitivity was measured on one forearm, while vibrotactile masking stimulation was applied to the opposite arm. Results were compared to sensitivity while vibrotactile stimulation was applied to a control site on the right shoulder. Sensitivity on the forearm was reduced by over 3 dB when the arms were touching and by 0.52 dB when they were held parallel. The masking effect depended on the position of the masking stimulus. Its effectiveness fell off by 1 STD when the stimulus was 29 % of arm length from the corresponding contralateral point. This long-range inhibitory effect in the tactile system suggests a surprisingly intimate relationship between the two sides of the body.

  19. Virtual environment tactile system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renzi, Ronald

    1996-01-01

    A method for providing a realistic sense of touch in virtual reality by means of programmable actuator assemblies is disclosed. Each tactile actuator assembly consists of a number of individual actuators whose movement is controlled by a computer and associated drive electronics. When an actuator is energized, the rare earth magnet and the associated contactor, incorporated within the actuator, are set in motion by the opposing electromagnetic field of a surrounding coil. The magnet pushes the contactor forward to contact the skin resulting in the sensation of touch. When the electromagnetic field is turned off, the rare earth magnet and the contactor return to their neutral positions due to the magnetic equilibrium caused by the interaction with the ferrous outer sleeve. The small size and flexible nature of the actuator assemblies permit incorporation into a glove, boot or body suit. The actuator has additional applications, such as, for example, as an accelerometer, an actuator for precisely controlled actuations or to simulate the sensation of braille letters.

  20. Development of a System to Assist Automatic Translation of Hand-Drawn Maps into Tactile Graphics and Its Usability Evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianjun Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Tactile graphics are images that use raised surfaces so that a visually impaired person can feel them. Tactile maps are used by blind and partially sighted people when navigating around an environment, and they are also used prior to a visit for orientation purposes. Since the ability to read tactile graphics deeply depends on individuals, providing tactile graphics individually is needed. This implies that producing tactile graphics should be as simple as possible. Based on this background, we are developing a system for automating production of tactile maps from hand-drawn figures. In this paper, we first present a pattern recognition method for hand-drawn maps. The usability of our system is then evaluated by comparing it with the two different methods to produce tactile graphics.

  1. Tactile defensiveness and stereotyped behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baranek, G T; Foster, L G; Berkson, G

    1997-02-01

    This study explores the constructs of stereotyped behaviors (e.g., repetitive motor patterns, object manipulations, behavioral rigidities) and tactile defensiveness as relevant to occupational therapy theory and practice and attempts to test their purported relationships in children with developmental disabilities. Twenty-eight children with developmental disabilities and autism were assessed on eight factors of stereotyped behavior via a questionnaire and by four measures of tactile defensiveness. The subjects' scores from the questionnaire were correlated with their scores on the tactile defensiveness measures to see what, if any, relationship among these behaviors exists. Significant relationships emerged from the data, indicating that subjects with higher levels of tactile defensiveness were also more likely to evidence rigid or inflexible behaviors, repetitive verbalizations, visual stereotypes, and abnormal focused affections that are often associated with autism. No significant association was found between motor and object stereotypes and tactile defensiveness. These relationships could not be explained solely by maturational factors. The results suggest that clinicians should include observations of stereotyped behaviors, particularly behavioral rigidities, in conjunction with assessments of sensory defensiveness because these are related phenomena that may pose unique challenges for children with developmental disabilities and autism. Further study is needed to determine the causal mechanisms responsible for these relationships.

  2. Novel high resolution tactile robotic fingertips

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Jankovics, Vince; Gorsic, Matija

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes a novel robotic fingertip based on piezoresistive rubber that can sense pressure tactile stimuli with a high spatial resolution over curved surfaces. The working principle is based on a three-layer sandwich structure (conductive electrodes on top and bottom and piezoresistive...... with specialized data acquisition electronics that acquire 500 frames per second provides rich information regarding contact force, shape and angle for bio- inspired robotic fingertips. Furthermore, a model of estimating the force of contact based on values of the cells is proposed....

  3. Exploration of the Effectiveness of Tactile Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aldajani, Neda F.

    2016-01-01

    This paper introduces the tactile method and aims to explore the effectiveness of using tactile methods with students who are blind and visually impaired. Although there was limited research about using this strategy, all of the research agrees that using tactile is one of the best ways for students who are blind and visually impaired to be…

  4. A Prototype Tactile Sensor Array.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1982-09-15

    Active Touch Sensing. Technical Report, MIT Artificial Inteligence Laboratory, 1981. (9] Larcombe, M. Carbon Fibre Tactile Sensors. Technical Report...thesis, Carnegie-Mellon University, 1981. [13] Purbrick, John A. A Force Transducer Employing Conductive Silicone Rubber. Technical Report, MIT Artificial

  5. Magnetic Nanocomposite Cilia Tactile Sensor

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed; Kosel, Jü rgen

    2015-01-01

    A multifunctional biomimetic nanocomposite tactile sensor is developed that can detect shear and vertical forces, feel texture, and measure flow with extremely low power consumption. The sensor's high performance is maintained within a wide operating range that can be easily adjusted. The concept works on rigid and flexible substrates and the sensors can be used in air or water without any modifications.

  6. Magnetic Nanocomposite Cilia Tactile Sensor

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed

    2015-10-21

    A multifunctional biomimetic nanocomposite tactile sensor is developed that can detect shear and vertical forces, feel texture, and measure flow with extremely low power consumption. The sensor\\'s high performance is maintained within a wide operating range that can be easily adjusted. The concept works on rigid and flexible substrates and the sensors can be used in air or water without any modifications.

  7. Tactile friction of topical formulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skedung, L; Buraczewska-Norin, I; Dawood, N; Rutland, M W; Ringstad, L

    2016-02-01

    The tactile perception is essential for all types of topical formulations (cosmetic, pharmaceutical, medical device) and the possibility to predict the sensorial response by using instrumental methods instead of sensory testing would save time and cost at an early stage product development. Here, we report on an instrumental evaluation method using tactile friction measurements to estimate perceptual attributes of topical formulations. Friction was measured between an index finger and an artificial skin substrate after application of formulations using a force sensor. Both model formulations of liquid crystalline phase structures with significantly different tactile properties, as well as commercial pharmaceutical moisturizing creams being more tactile-similar, were investigated. Friction coefficients were calculated as the ratio of the friction force to the applied load. The structures of the model formulations and phase transitions as a result of water evaporation were identified using optical microscopy. The friction device could distinguish friction coefficients between the phase structures, as well as the commercial creams after spreading and absorption into the substrate. In addition, phase transitions resulting in alterations in the feel of the formulations could be detected. A correlation was established between skin hydration and friction coefficient, where hydrated skin gave rise to higher friction. Also a link between skin smoothening and finger friction was established for the commercial moisturizing creams, although further investigations are needed to analyse this and correlations with other sensorial attributes in more detail. The present investigation shows that tactile friction measurements have potential as an alternative or complement in the evaluation of perception of topical formulations. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Development of flexible tactile sensors for hexapod robots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Børlum-Petersen, Mikkel; Jouffroy, Jerome

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes the development of flexible based tactile array sensors based on piezoresistive rubber for use in the leg tips of hexapod robotics. The sensors are composed of a sandwich similar structure, with a piezoresistive rubber used as the middle layer and flexPCB electrodes...

  9. Object texture recognition by dynamic tactile sensing using active exploration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Børlum Petersen, Mikkel; Bilberg, Arne

    with a dynamic tactile transducer based on polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) piezoelectric film. Different test surfaces are actively explored and the signal from the sensor is used for feature extraction, which is subsequently used for classification. A comparison between the significance of different extracted......For both humans and robots, tactile sensing is important for interaction with the environment: it is the core sensing used for exploration and manipulation of objects. In this paper, we present a method for determining object texture by active exploration with a robotic fingertip equipped...

  10. Effect of Electrostatic Tactile Feedback on Accuracy and Efficiency of Pan Gestures on Touch Screens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Guohong; Sun, Xiaoying; Wang, Dangxiao; Liu, Yue; Zhang, Yuru

    2018-01-01

    Recently, many studies examined electrostatic tactile feedback on touch screens to enrich interaction experience. However, it is unclear as to whether added tactile feedback during a sliding process increases the accuracy of pan gestures with velocity constraints. In this study, a custom-designed electrostatic tactile display was considered. Initially, the accuracy and efficiency of pan gestures were compared under two conditions, namely with and without electrostatic tactile feedback. This was followed by exploring the evolution of completion time (CT) with different indices of difficulties (ID). Experimental results with 12 participants indicated that the accuracy and completion time of pan gestures with added tactile feedback significantly exceeded those without tactile feedback. Furthermore, the relationship between CT and ID satisfied Fitts' Law with a correlation coefficient exceeding 0.9. Based on the findings, a "Tactile Fruit Sorting" game was designed, and subjective and objective evaluations were conducted. The results confirmed that the added tactile feedback enhanced both user performance and interest with respect to the game.

  11. Remotely deployable aerial inspection using tactile sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLeod, C. N.; Cao, J.; Pierce, S. G.; Sullivan, J. C.; Pipe, A. G.; Dobie, G.; Summan, R.

    2014-02-01

    For structural monitoring applications, the use of remotely deployable Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) inspection platforms offer many advantages, including improved accessibility, greater safety and reduced cost, when compared to traditional manual inspection techniques. The use of such platforms, previously reported by researchers at the University Strathclyde facilitates the potential for rapid scanning of large areas and volumes in hazardous locations. A common problem for both manual and remote deployment approaches lies in the intrinsic stand-off and surface coupling issues of typical NDE probes. The associated complications of these requirements are obviously significantly exacerbated when considering aerial based remote inspection and deployment, resulting in simple visual techniques being the preferred sensor payload. Researchers at Bristol Robotics Laboratory have developed biomimetic tactile sensors modelled on the facial whiskers (vibrissae) of animals such as rats and mice, with the latest sensors actively sweeping their tips across the surface in a back and forth motion. The current work reports on the design and performance of an aerial inspection platform and the suitability of tactile whisking sensors to aerial based surface monitoring applications.

  12. Force control in the absence of visual and tactile feedback

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mugge, W.; Abbink, D.A.; Schouten, Alfred Christiaan; van der Helm, F.C.T.; Arendzen, J.H.; Meskers, C.G.M.

    2013-01-01

    Motor control tasks like stance or object handling require sensory feedback from proprioception, vision and touch. The distinction between tactile and proprioceptive sensors is not frequently made in dynamic motor control tasks, and if so, mostly based on signal latency. We previously found that

  13. Can tactile sensory processing differentiate between children with autistic disorder and asperger's disorder?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghanizadeh, Ahmad

    2011-05-01

    There are debates whether autistic disorder (autism) and Asperger's disorder are two distinct disorders. Moreover, interventional sensory occupational therapy should consider the clinical characteristics of patients. Already, commonalities and differences between Asperger's disorder and autistic disorder are not well studied. The aim of this study is to compare tactile sensory function of children with autistic disorder and children with Asperger's disorder. Tactile sensory function was compared between 36 children with autism and 19 children with Asperger's disorder. The two disorders were diagnosed based on Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth Edition, Text Revision. The parent-reported Tactile Dysfunction Checklist was used to assess the three aspects of hypersensitivity, hyposensitivity, and poor tactile perception and discrimination. Developmental coordination was also assessed. Developmental coordination problems total score was not associated with group. The mean (standard deviation) score of tactile hyper-responsivity was not different between the groups. Tactile hyporesponsivity and poor tactile perception and discrimination scores were statistically higher in autistic disorder than Asperger's disorder group. These results for the first time indicated that at least some aspects of tactile perception can differentiate these two disorders. Children with autistic disorder have more tactile sensory seeking behaviors than children with Asperger's disorder. Moreover, the ability of children with autistic disorder for tactile discrimination and sensory perception is less than those with Asperger's disorder. Interventional sensory therapy in children with autistic disorder should have some characteristics that can be different and specific for children with Asperger's disorder. Formal intelligence quotient testing was not performed on all of the children evaluated, which is a limitation to this study. In some cases, a clinical estimation of

  14. City Walks and Tactile Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mădălina Diaconu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper is an attempt to develop categories of the pedestrian’s tactile and kinaesthetic experience of the city. The beginning emphasizes the haptic qualities of surfaces and textures, which can be “palpated” visually or experienced by walking. Also the lived city is three-dimensional; its corporeal depth is discussed here in relation to the invisible sewers, protuberant profiles, and the formal diversity of roofscapes. A central role is ascribed in the present analysis to the formal similarities between the representation of the city by walking through it and the representation of the tactile form of objects. Additional aspects of the “tactile” experience of the city in a broad sense concern the feeling of their rhythms and the exposure to weather conditions. Finally, several aspects of contingency converge in the visible age of architectural works, which record traces of individual and collective histories.

  15. Blind Braille readers mislocate tactile stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterr, Annette; Green, Lisa; Elbert, Thomas

    2003-05-01

    In a previous experiment, we observed that blind Braille readers produce errors when asked to identify on which finger of one hand a light tactile stimulus had occurred. With the present study, we aimed to specify the characteristics of this perceptual error in blind and sighted participants. The experiment confirmed that blind Braille readers mislocalised tactile stimuli more often than sighted controls, and that the localisation errors occurred significantly more often at the right reading hand than at the non-reading hand. Most importantly, we discovered that the reading fingers showed the smallest error frequency, but the highest rate of stimulus attribution. The dissociation of perceiving and locating tactile stimuli in the blind suggests altered tactile information processing. Neuroplasticity, changes in tactile attention mechanisms as well as the idea that blind persons may employ different strategies for tactile exploration and object localisation are discussed as possible explanations for the results obtained.

  16. 3D Printing Technologies for Flexible Tactile Sensors toward Wearable Electronics and Electronic Skin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Changyong Liu

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available 3D printing has attracted a lot of attention in recent years. Over the past three decades, various 3D printing technologies have been developed including photopolymerization-based, materials extrusion-based, sheet lamination-based, binder jetting-based, power bed fusion-based and direct energy deposition-based processes. 3D printing offers unparalleled flexibility and simplicity in the fabrication of highly complex 3D objects. Tactile sensors that emulate human tactile perceptions are used to translate mechanical signals such as force, pressure, strain, shear, torsion, bend, vibration, etc. into electrical signals and play a crucial role toward the realization of wearable electronics and electronic skin. To date, many types of 3D printing technologies have been applied in the manufacturing of various types of tactile sensors including piezoresistive, capacitive and piezoelectric sensors. This review attempts to summarize the current state-of-the-art 3D printing technologies and their applications in tactile sensors for wearable electronics and electronic skin. The applications are categorized into five aspects: 3D-printed molds for microstructuring substrate, electrodes and sensing element; 3D-printed flexible sensor substrate and sensor body for tactile sensors; 3D-printed sensing element; 3D-printed flexible and stretchable electrodes for tactile sensors; and fully 3D-printed tactile sensors. Latest advances in the fabrication of tactile sensors by 3D printing are reviewed and the advantages and limitations of various 3D printing technologies and printable materials are discussed. Finally, future development of 3D-printed tactile sensors is discussed.

  17. Design of a Large-scale Three-dimensional Flexible Arrayed Tactile Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junxiang Ding

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a new type of large-scale three-dimensional flexible arrayed tactile sensor based on conductive rubber. It can be used to detect three-dimensional force information on the continuous surface of the sensor, which realizes a true skin type tactile sensor. The widely used method of liquid rubber injection molding (LIMS method is used for "the overall injection molding" sample preparation. The structure details of staggered nodes and a new decoupling algorithm of force analysis are given. Simulation results show that the sensor based on this structure can achieve flexible measurement of large-scale 3-D tactile sensor arrays.

  18. Flexible PZT Thin Film Tactile Sensor for Biomedical Monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wen-Jong Wu

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the development of tactile sensors using the sol-gel process to deposit a PZT thin-film from 250 nm to 1 μm on a flexible stainless steel substrate. The PZT thin-film tactile sensor can be used to measure human pulses from several areas, including carotid, brachial, finger, ankle, radial artery, and the apical region. Flexible PZT tactile sensors can overcome the diverse topology of various human regions and sense the corresponding signals from human bodies. The measured arterial pulse waveform can be used to diagnose hypertension and cardiac failure in patients. The proposed sensors have several advantages, such as flexibility, reliability, high strain, low cost, simple fabrication, and low temperature processing. The PZT thin-film deposition process includes a pyrolysis process at 150 °C/500 °C for 10/5 min, followed by an annealing process at 650 °C for 10 min. Finally, the consistent pulse wave velocity (PWV was demonstrated based on human pulse measurements from apical to radial, brachial to radial, and radial to ankle. It is characterized that the sensitivity of our PZT-based tactile sensor was approximately 0.798 mV/g.

  19. Flexible PZT thin film tactile sensor for biomedical monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tseng, Hong-Jie; Tian, Wei-Cheng; Wu, Wen-Jong

    2013-04-25

    This paper presents the development of tactile sensors using the sol-gel process to deposit a PZT thin-film from 250 nm to 1 μm on a flexible stainless steel substrate. The PZT thin-film tactile sensor can be used to measure human pulses from several areas, including carotid, brachial, finger, ankle, radial artery, and the apical region. Flexible PZT tactile sensors can overcome the diverse topology of various human regions and sense the corresponding signals from human bodies. The measured arterial pulse waveform can be used to diagnose hypertension and cardiac failure in patients. The proposed sensors have several advantages, such as flexibility, reliability, high strain, low cost, simple fabrication, and low temperature processing. The PZT thin-film deposition process includes a pyrolysis process at 150 °C/500 °C for 10/5 min, followed by an annealing process at 650 °C for 10 min. Finally, the consistent pulse wave velocity (PWV) was demonstrated based on human pulse measurements from apical to radial, brachial to radial, and radial to ankle. It is characterized that the sensitivity of our PZT-based tactile sensor was approximately 0.798 mV/g.

  20. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults

    OpenAIRE

    Heed, Tobias; Roeder, Brigitte; Badde, Stephanie; Schubert, Jonathan

    2017-01-01

    Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while i...

  1. Movement Induces the Use of External Spatial Coordinates for Tactile Localization in Congenitally Blind Humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heed, Tobias; Möller, Johanna; Röder, Brigitte

    2015-01-01

    To localize touch, the brain integrates spatial information coded in anatomically based and external spatial reference frames. Sighted humans, by default, use both reference frames in tactile localization. In contrast, congenitally blind individuals have been reported to rely exclusively on anatomical coordinates, suggesting a crucial role of the visual system for tactile spatial processing. We tested whether the use of external spatial information in touch can, alternatively, be induced by a movement context. Sighted and congenitally blind humans performed a tactile temporal order judgment task that indexes the use of external coordinates for tactile localization, while they executed bimanual arm movements with uncrossed and crossed start and end postures. In the sighted, start posture and planned end posture of the arm movement modulated tactile localization for stimuli presented before and during movement, indicating automatic, external recoding of touch. Contrary to previous findings, tactile localization of congenitally blind participants, too, was affected by external coordinates, though only for stimuli presented before movement start. Furthermore, only the movement's start posture, but not the planned end posture affected blind individuals' tactile performance. Thus, integration of external coordinates in touch is established without vision, though more selectively than when vision has developed normally, and possibly restricted to movement contexts. The lack of modulation by the planned posture in congenitally blind participants suggests that external coordinates in this group are not mediated by motor efference copy. Instead the task-related frequent posture changes, that is, movement consequences rather than planning, appear to have induced their use of external coordinates.

  2. A flexible tactile sensitive sheet using a hetero-core fiber optic sensor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujino, S.; Yamazaki, H.; Hosoki, A.; Watanabe, K.

    2014-05-01

    In this report, we have designed a tactile sensitive sheet based on a hetero-core fiber-optic sensor, which realize an areal sensing by using single sensor potion in one optical fiber line. Recently, flexible and wide-area tactile sensing technology is expected to applied to acquired biological information in living space and robot achieve long-term care services such as welfare and nursing-care and humanoid technology. A hetero-core fiber-optic sensor has several advantages such as thin and flexible transmission line, immunity to EMI. Additionally this sensor is sensitive to moderate bending actions with optical loss changes and is independent of temperature fluctuation. Thus, the hetero-core fiber-optic sensor can be suitable for areal tactile sensing. We measure pressure characteristic of the proposed sensitive sheet by changing the pressure position and pinching characteristic on the surface. The proposed tactile sensitive sheet shows monotonic responses on the whole sensitive sheet surface although different sensitivity by the position is observed at the sensitive sheet surface. Moreover, the tactile sensitive sheet could sufficiently detect the pinching motion. In addition, in order to realize the discrimination between pressure and pinch, we fabricated a doubled-over sensor using a set of tactile sensitive sheets, which has different kinds of silicon robbers as a sensitive sheet surface. In conclusion, the flexible material could be given to the tactile sensation which is attached under proposed sensitive sheet.

  3. The Design of Tactile Thematic Symbols

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, Megan M.; Lobben, Amy K.

    2011-01-01

    The study reported here investigated the design and legibility of tactile thematic maps, focusing on symbolization and the comprehension of spatial patterns on the maps. The results indicate that discriminable and effective tactile thematic maps can be produced using classed data with a microcapsule paper production method. The participants…

  4. Tactile modulation of hippocampal place fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gener, Thomas; Perez-Mendez, Lorena; Sanchez-Vives, Maria V

    2013-12-01

    Neural correlates of spatial representation can be found in the activity of the hippocampal place cells. These neurons are characterized by firing whenever the animal is located in a particular area of the space, the place field. Place fields are modulated by sensory cues, such as visual, auditory, or olfactory cues, being the influence of visual inputs the most thoroughly studied. Tactile information gathered by the whiskers has a prominent representation in the rat cerebral cortex. However, the influence of whisker-detected tactile cues on place fields remains an open question. Here we studied place fields in an enriched tactile environment where the remaining sensory cues were occluded. First, place cells were recorded before and after blockade of tactile transmission by means of lidocaine applied on the whisker pad. Following tactile deprivation, the majority of place cells decreased their firing rate and their place fields expanded. We next rotated the tactile cues and 90% of place fields rotated with them. Our results demonstrate that tactile information is integrated into place cells at least in a tactile-enriched arena and when other sensory cues are not available. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. TACTILE SENSING FOR OBJECT IDENTIFICATION

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Marian, Nicolae; Bilberg, Arne

    2009-01-01

    The artificial sense of touch is a research area that can be considered still in demand, compared with the human dexterity of grasping a wide variety of shapes and sizes, perform complex tasks, and switch between grasps in response to changing task requirements. For handling unknown objects...... in unstructured environments, tactile sensing can provide more than valuable to complementary vision information about mechanical properties such as recognition and characterization, force, pressure, torque, compliance, friction, and mass as well as object shape, texture, position and pose. In this paper, we...

  6. The role of the sliding direction against a grooved channel texture on tool steel: An experimental study on tactile friction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zhang, S.; Rodriguez Urribarri, A.; Morales Hurtado, M.; Zeng, X.; Heide, E. van der

    2015-01-01

    To control tactile friction, that is the friction between fingertip and counter-body, the role of surface texture is required to be unveiled and defined. In this research, an experimental approach is used based on measuring tactile friction for directional texture (grooved channel) with varying

  7. Scalable fabric tactile sensor arrays for soft bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, Nathan; Penaloza, Jimmy; Santos, Veronica J.; Killpack, Marc D.

    2018-06-01

    Soft robots have the potential to transform the way robots interact with their environment. This is due to their low inertia and inherent ability to more safely interact with the world without damaging themselves or the people around them. However, existing sensing for soft robots has at least partially limited their ability to control interactions with their environment. Tactile sensors could enable soft robots to sense interaction, but most tactile sensors are made from rigid substrates and are not well suited to applications for soft robots which can deform. In addition, the benefit of being able to cheaply manufacture soft robots may be lost if the tactile sensors that cover them are expensive and their resolution does not scale well for manufacturability. This paper discusses the development of a method to make affordable, high-resolution, tactile sensor arrays (manufactured in rows and columns) that can be used for sensorizing soft robots and other soft bodies. However, the construction results in a sensor array that exhibits significant amounts of cross-talk when two taxels in the same row are compressed. Using the same fabric-based tactile sensor array construction design, two different methods for cross-talk compensation are presented. The first uses a mathematical model to calculate a change in resistance of each taxel directly. The second method introduces additional simple circuit components that enable us to isolate each taxel electrically and relate voltage to force directly. Fabric sensor arrays are demonstrated for two different soft-bodied applications: an inflatable single link robot and a human wrist.

  8. Three Realizations and Comparison of Hardware for Piezoresistive Tactile Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidal-Verdú, Fernando; Oballe-Peinado, Óscar; Sánchez-Durán, José A.; Castellanos-Ramos, Julián; Navas-González, Rafael

    2011-01-01

    Tactile sensors are basically arrays of force sensors that are intended to emulate the skin in applications such as assistive robotics. Local electronics are usually implemented to reduce errors and interference caused by long wires. Realizations based on standard microcontrollers, Programmable Systems on Chip (PSoCs) and Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) have been proposed by the authors for the case of piezoresistive tactile sensors. The solution employing FPGAs is especially relevant since their performance is closer to that of Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) than that of the other devices. This paper presents an implementation of such an idea for a specific sensor. For the purpose of comparison, the circuitry based on the other devices is also made for the same sensor. This paper discusses the implementation issues, provides details regarding the design of the hardware based on the three devices and compares them. PMID:22163797

  9. Making sense. What can we learn from experts of tactile knowledge?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilla Groth

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This article describes an embodied way of making sense through making with the hands. We examine the potential o ftactile experience in the making process and analyse what tactile experiences mean. The study takes place in the context of an era marked by audio-visual dominance.The article presents a case study that observed and interviewed deafblind makers while they worked with clay. The findings reveal that modelling in clay resembles the visualisation process of sketching. As such, it may contribute to thinking through the hands. Language is not a self-evident communication tool for transferring tactile skills. Based on our case study, we propose the use of tactile communication in the process of transferring tactile knowledge through making with another person’s hands.

  10. Tactile feedback improves auditory spatial localization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica eGori

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Our recent studies suggest that congenitally blind adults have severely impaired thresholds in an auditory spatial-bisection task, pointing to the importance of vision in constructing complex auditory spatial maps (Gori et al., 2014. To explore strategies that may improve the auditory spatial sense in visually impaired people, we investigated the impact of tactile feedback on spatial auditory localization in 48 blindfolded sighted subjects. We measured auditory spatial bisection thresholds before and after training, either with tactile feedback, verbal feedback or no feedback. Audio thresholds were first measured with a spatial bisection task: subjects judged whether the second sound of a three sound sequence was spatially closer to the first or the third sound. The tactile-feedback group underwent two audio-tactile feedback sessions of 100 trials, where each auditory trial was followed by the same spatial sequence played on the subject’s forearm; auditory spatial bisection thresholds were evaluated after each session. In the verbal-feedback condition, the positions of the sounds were verbally reported to the subject after each feedback trial. The no-feedback group did the same sequence of trials, with no feedback. Performance improved significantly only after audio-tactile feedback. The results suggest that direct tactile feedback interacts with the auditory spatial localization system, possibly by a process of cross-sensory recalibration. Control tests with the subject rotated suggested that this effect occurs only when the tactile and acoustic sequences are spatially coherent. Our results suggest that the tactile system can be used to recalibrate the auditory sense of space. These results encourage the possibility of designing rehabilitation programs to help blind persons establish a robust auditory sense of space, through training with the tactile modality.

  11. Flow of cortical activity underlying a tactile decision in mice

    OpenAIRE

    Guo, Zengcai V.; Li, Nuo; Huber, Daniel; Ophir, Eran; Gutnisky, Diego; Ting, Jonathan T.; Feng, Guoping; Svoboda, Karel

    2013-01-01

    Perceptual decisions involve distributed cortical activity. Does information flow sequentially from one cortical area to another, or do networks of interconnected areas contribute at the same time? Here we delineate when and how activity in specific areas drives a whisker-based decision in mice. A short-term memory component temporally separated tactile “sensation” and “action” (licking). Using optogenetic inhibition (spatial resolution, 2 mm; temporal resolution, 100 ms), we surveyed the neo...

  12. Tactile Data Entry System, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Building on our successful Phase I Tactile Data Entry program, Barron Associates proposes development of a Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO) system to permit...

  13. Integration of force reflection with tactile sensing for minimally invasive robotics-assisted tumor localization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talasaz, A; Patel, R V

    2013-01-01

    Tactile sensing and force reflection have been the subject of considerable research for tumor localization in soft-tissue palpation. The work presented in this paper investigates the relevance of force feedback (presented visually as well as directly) during tactile sensing (presented visually only) for tumor localization using an experimental setup close to one that could be applied for real robotics-assisted minimally invasive surgery. The setup is a teleoperated (master-slave) system facilitated with a state-of-the-art minimally invasive probe with a rigidly mounted tactile sensor at the tip and an externally mounted force sensor at the base of the probe. The objective is to capture the tactile information and measure the interaction forces between the probe and tissue during palpation and to explore how they can be integrated to improve the performance of tumor localization. To quantitatively explore the effect of force feedback on tactile sensing tumor localization, several experiments were conducted by human subjects to locate artificial tumors embedded in the ex vivo bovine livers. The results show that using tactile sensing in a force-controlled environment can realize, on average, 57 percent decrease in the maximum force and 55 percent decrease in the average force applied to tissue while increasing the tumor detection accuracy by up to 50 percent compared to the case of using tactile feedback alone. The results also show that while visual presentation of force feedback gives straightforward quantitative measures, improved performance of tactile sensing tumor localization is achieved at the expense of longer times for the user. Also, the quickness and intuitive data mapping of direct force feedback makes it more appealing to experienced users.

  14. 3D capacitive tactile sensor using DRIE micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chuang, Chiehtang; Chen, Rongshun

    2005-07-01

    This paper presents a three dimensional micro capacitive tactile sensor that can detect normal and shear forces which is fabricated using deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) bulk silicon micromachining. The tactile sensor consists of a force transmission plate, a symmetric suspension system, and comb electrodes. The sensing character is based on the changes of capacitance between coplanar sense electrodes. High sensitivity is achieved by using the high aspect ratio interdigital electrodes with narrow comb gaps and large overlap areas. The symmetric suspension mechanism of this sensor can easily solve the coupling problem of measurement and increase the stability of the structure. In this paper, the sensor structure is designed, the capacitance variation of the proposed device is theoretically analyzed, and the finite element analysis of mechanical behavior of the structures is performed.

  15. Generalization of a tactile stimulus in horses.

    OpenAIRE

    Dougherty, D M; Lewis, P

    1993-01-01

    Using horses, we investigated the control of operant behavior by a tactile stimulus (the training stimulus) and the generalization of behavior to six other similar test stimuli. In a stall, the experimenters mounted a response panel in the doorway. Located on this panel were a response lever and a grain dispenser. The experimenters secured a tactile-stimulus belt to the horse's back. The stimulus belt was constructed by mounting seven solenoids along a piece of burlap in a manner that allowed...

  16. Tactile Perception of Roughness and Hardness to Discriminate Materials by Friction-Induced Vibration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuyang Ding

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The human fingertip is an exquisitely powerful bio-tactile sensor in perceiving different materials based on various highly-sensitive mechanoreceptors distributed all over the skin. The tactile perception of surface roughness and material hardness can be estimated by skin vibrations generated during a fingertip stroking of a surface instead of being maintained in a static position. Moreover, reciprocating sliding with increasing velocities and pressures are two common behaviors in humans to discriminate different materials, but the question remains as to what the correlation of the sliding velocity and normal load on the tactile perceptions of surface roughness and hardness is for material discrimination. In order to investigate this correlation, a finger-inspired crossed-I beam structure tactile tester has been designed to mimic the anthropic tactile discrimination behaviors. A novel method of characterizing the fast Fourier transform integral (FFT slope of the vibration acceleration signal generated from fingertip rubbing on surfaces at increasing sliding velocity and normal load, respectively, are defined as kv and kw, and is proposed to discriminate the surface roughness and hardness of different materials. Over eight types of materials were tested, and they proved the capability and advantages of this high tactile-discriminating method. Our study may find applications in investigating humanoid robot perceptual abilities.

  17. Tactile-Foot Stimulation Can Assist the Navigation of People with Visual Impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramiro Velázquez

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Tactile interfaces that stimulate the plantar surface with vibrations could represent a step forward toward the development of wearable, inconspicuous, unobtrusive, and inexpensive assistive devices for people with visual impairments. Objective. To study how people understand information through their feet and to maximize the capabilities of tactile-foot perception for assisting human navigation. Methods. Based on the physiology of the plantar surface, three prototypes of electronic tactile interfaces for the foot have been developed. With important technological improvements between them, all three prototypes essentially consist of a set of vibrating actuators embedded in a foam shoe-insole. Perceptual experiments involving direction recognition and real-time navigation in space were conducted with a total of 60 voluntary subjects. Results. The developed prototypes demonstrated that they are capable of transmitting tactile information that is easy and fast to understand. Average direction recognition rates were 76%, 88.3%, and 94.2% for subjects wearing the first, second, and third prototype, respectively. Exhibiting significant advances in tactile-foot stimulation, the third prototype was evaluated in navigation tasks. Results show that subjects were capable of following directional instructions useful for navigating spaces. Conclusion. Footwear providing tactile stimulation can be considered for assisting the navigation of people with visual impairments.

  18. Tactile information processing in primate hand somatosensory cortex (S1) during passive arm movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Weiguo; Francis, Joseph Thachil

    2013-11-01

    Motor output mostly depends on sensory input, which also can be affected by action. To further our understanding of how tactile information is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in dynamic environments, we recorded neural responses to tactile stimulation of the hand in three awake monkeys under arm/hand passive movement and rest. We found that neurons generally responded to tactile stimulation under both conditions and were modulated by movement: with a higher baseline firing rate, a suppressed peak rate, and a smaller dynamic range during passive movement than during rest, while the area under the response curve was stable across these two states. By using an information theory-based method, the mutual information between tactile stimulation and neural responses was quantified with rate and spatial coding models under the two conditions. The two potential encoding models showed different contributions depending on behavioral contexts. Tactile information encoded with rate coding from individual units was lower than spatial coding of unit pairs, especially during movement; however, spatial coding had redundant information between unit pairs. Passive movement regulated the mutual information, and such regulation might play different roles depending on the encoding strategies used. The underlying mechanisms of our observation most likely come from a bottom-up strategy, where neurons in S1 were regulated through the activation of the peripheral tactile/proprioceptive receptors and the interactions between these different types of information.

  19. Endoscopic vs. tactile evaluation of subgingival calculus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, Joy B; Lenton, Patricia A; Lunos, Scott A; Blue, Christine M

    2014-08-01

    Endoscopic technology has been developed to facilitate imagery for use during diagnostic and therapeutic phases of periodontal care. The purpose of this study was to compare the level of subgingival calculus detection using a periodontal endoscope with that of conventional tactile explorer in periodontitis subjects. A convenience sample of 26 subjects with moderate periodontitis in at least 2 quadrants was recruited from the University of Minnesota School of Dentistry to undergo quadrant scaling and root planing. One quadrant from each subject was randomized for tactile calculus detection alone and the other quadrant for tactile detection plus the Perioscope ™ (Perioscopy Inc., Oakland, Cali). A calculus index on a 0 to 3 score was performed at baseline and at 2 post-scaling and root planing visits. Sites where calculus was detected at visit 1 were retreated. T-tests were used to determine within-subject differences between Perioscope™ and tactile measures, and changes in measures between visits. Significantly more calculus was detected using the Perioscope™ vs. tactile explorer for all 3 subject visits (pcalculus detection from baseline to visit 1 were statistically significant for both the Perioscope™ and tactile quadrants (pcalculus detection from visit 1 to visit 2 was only significant for the Perioscope™ quadrant (pcalculus at this visit. It was concluded that the addition of a visual component to calculus detection via the Perioscope™ was most helpful in the re-evaluation phase of periodontal therapy. Copyright © 2014 The American Dental Hygienists’ Association.

  20. Artificial Skin Ridges Enhance Local Tactile Shape Discrimination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuzhi Sam Ge

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available One of the fundamental requirements for an artificial hand to successfully grasp and manipulate an object is to be able to distinguish different objects’ shapes and, more specifically, the objects’ surface curvatures. In this study, we investigate the possibility of enhancing the curvature detection of embedded tactile sensors by proposing a ridged fingertip structure, simulating human fingerprints. In addition, a curvature detection approach based on machine learning methods is proposed to provide the embedded sensors with the ability to discriminate the surface curvature of different objects. For this purpose, a set of experiments were carried out to collect tactile signals from a 2 × 2 tactile sensor array, then the signals were processed and used for learning algorithms. To achieve the best possible performance for our machine learning approach, three different learning algorithms of Naïve Bayes (NB, Artificial Neural Networks (ANN, and Support Vector Machines (SVM were implemented and compared for various parameters. Finally, the most accurate method was selected to evaluate the proposed skin structure in recognition of three different curvatures. The results showed an accuracy rate of 97.5% in surface curvature discrimination.

  1. Ambiguity in Tactile Apparent Motion Perception.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emanuela Liaci

    Full Text Available In von Schiller's Stroboscopic Alternative Motion (SAM stimulus two visually presented diagonal dot pairs, located on the corners of an imaginary rectangle, alternate with each other and induce either horizontal, vertical or, rarely, rotational motion percepts. SAM motion perception can be described by a psychometric function of the dot aspect ratio ("AR", i.e. the relation between vertical and horizontal dot distances. Further, with equal horizontal and vertical dot distances (AR = 1 perception is biased towards vertical motion. In a series of five experiments, we presented tactile SAM versions and studied the role of AR and of different reference frames for the perception of tactile apparent motion.We presented tactile SAM stimuli and varied the ARs, while participants reported the perceived motion directions. Pairs of vibration stimulators were attached to the participants' forearms and stimulator distances were varied within and between forearms. We compared straight and rotated forearm conditions with each other in order to disentangle the roles of exogenous and endogenous reference frames.Increasing the tactile SAM's AR biased perception towards vertical motion, but the effect was weak compared to the visual modality. We found no horizontal disambiguation, even for very small tactile ARs. A forearm rotation by 90° kept the vertical bias, even though it was now coupled with small ARs. A 45° rotation condition with crossed forearms, however, evoked a strong horizontal motion bias.Existing approaches to explain the visual SAM bias fail to explain the current tactile results. Particularly puzzling is the strong horizontal bias in the crossed-forearm conditions. In the case of tactile apparent motion, there seem to be no fixed priority rule for perceptual disambiguation. Rather the weighting of available evidence seems to depend on the degree of stimulus ambiguity, the current situation and on the perceptual strategy of the individual

  2. Tactile Working Memory Outside our Hands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takako Yoshida

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The haptic perception of 2D images is believed to make heavy demands on working memory. During active exploration, we need to store not only the current sensory information, but also to integrate this with kinesthetic information of the hand and fingers in order to generate a coherent percept. The question that arises is how much tactile memory we have for tactile stimuli that are no longer in contact with the skin during active touch? We examined working memory using a tactile change detection task with active exploration. Each trial contained two stimulation arrays. Participants engaged in unconstrained active tactile exploration of an array of vibrotactile stimulators. In half of the trials, one of the vibrating tactors that was active in the first stimulation turned off and another started vibrating in the second stimulation. Participants had to report whether the arrays were the same or different. Performance was near-perfect when up to two tactors were used and dropped linearly as the number of the vibrating tactors increased. These results suggest that the tactile working memory off the hand is limited and there is little or no memory integration across hand movements.

  3. Robotic Tactile Sensing Technologies and System

    CERN Document Server

    Dahiya, Ravinder S

    2013-01-01

    Future robots are expected to work closely and interact safely with real-world objects and humans alike. Sense of touch is important in this context, as it helps estimate properties such as shape, texture, hardness, material type and many more; provides action related information, such as slip detection; and helps carrying out actions such as rolling an object between fingers without dropping it. This book presents an in-depth description of the solutions available for gathering tactile data, obtaining aforementioned tactile information from the data and effectively using the same in various robotic tasks. Better integration of tactile sensors on a robot’s body is prerequisite for the effective utilization of tactile data. For this reason, the hardware, software and application related issues (and resulting trade-offs) that must be considered to make tactile sensing an effective component of robotic platforms are discussed in-depth.To this end, human touch sensing has also been explored. The design hints co...

  4. Tactile object exploration using cursor navigation sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kraft, Dirk; Bierbaum, Alexander; Kjaergaard, Morten

    2009-01-01

    In robotic applications tactile sensor systems serve the purpose of localizing a contact point and measuring contact forces. We have investigated the applicability of a sensorial device commonly used in cursor navigation technology for tactile sensing in robotics. We show the potential of this se......In robotic applications tactile sensor systems serve the purpose of localizing a contact point and measuring contact forces. We have investigated the applicability of a sensorial device commonly used in cursor navigation technology for tactile sensing in robotics. We show the potential...... of this sensor for active haptic exploration. More specifically, we present experiments and results which demonstrate the extraction of relevant object properties such as local shape, weight and elasticity using this technology. Besides its low price due to mass production and its modularity, an interesting...... aspect of this sensor is that beside a localization of contact points and measurement of the contact normal force also shear forces can be measured. This is relevant for many applications such as surface normal estimation and weight measurements. Scalable tactile sensor arrays have been developed...

  5. Learning tactile skills through curious exploration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leo ePape

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available We present curiosity-driven, autonomous acquisition of tactile exploratory skills on a biomimetic robot finger equipped with an array of microelectromechanical touch sensors. Instead of building tailored algorithms for solving a specific tactile task, we employ a more general curiosity-driven reinforcement learning approach that autonomously learns a set of motor skills in absence of an explicit teacher signal. In this approach, the acquisition of skills is driven by the information content of the sensory input signals relative to a learner that aims at representing sensory inputs using fewer and fewer computational resources. We show that, from initially random exploration of its environment, the robotic system autonomously develops a small set of basic motor skills that lead to different kinds of tactile input. Next, the system learns how to exploit the learned motor skills to solve supervised texture classification tasks. Our approach demonstrates the feasibility of autonomous acquisition of tactile skills on physical robotic platforms through curiosity-driven reinforcement learning, overcomes typical difficulties of engineered solutions for active tactile exploration and underactuated control, and provides a basis for studying developmental learning through intrinsic motivation in robots.

  6. Generation of tactile maps for artificial skin.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon McGregor

    Full Text Available Prior research has shown that representations of retinal surfaces can be learned from the intrinsic structure of visual sensory data in neural simulations, in robots, as well as by animals. Furthermore, representations of cochlear (frequency surfaces can be learned from auditory data in neural simulations. Advances in hardware technology have allowed the development of artificial skin for robots, realising a new sensory modality which differs in important respects from vision and audition in its sensorimotor characteristics. This provides an opportunity to further investigate ordered sensory map formation using computational tools. We show that it is possible to learn representations of non-trivial tactile surfaces, which require topologically and geometrically involved three-dimensional embeddings. Our method automatically constructs a somatotopic map corresponding to the configuration of tactile sensors on a rigid body, using only intrinsic properties of the tactile data. The additional complexities involved in processing the tactile modality require the development of a novel multi-dimensional scaling algorithm. This algorithm, ANISOMAP, extends previous methods and outperforms them, producing high-quality reconstructions of tactile surfaces in both simulation and hardware tests. In addition, the reconstruction turns out to be robust to unanticipated hardware failure.

  7. A critical experimental study of the classical tactile threshold theory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Medina Leonel E

    2010-06-01

    level. Nevertheless, our experimental results are above that chance level. Therefore, if detection exists below the classical threshold level, then the model to explain the SR phenomenon or any other tactile perception phenomena based on the psychophysical classical threshold is not valid. We conclude that a more suitable model of the tactile sensory system is needed.

  8. Bouba/Kiki in Touch: Associations Between Tactile Perceptual Qualities and Japanese Phonemes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maki Sakamoto

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Several studies have shown cross-modal associations between sounds and vision or gustation by asking participants to match pre-defined sound-symbolic words (SSWs, such as “bouba” or “kiki,” with visual or gustatory materials. Here, we conducted an explorative study on cross-modal associations of tactile sensations using spontaneous production of Japanese SSWs and semantic ratings. The Japanese language was selected, because it has a large number of SSWs that can represent a wide range of tactile perceptual spaces with fine resolution, and it shows strong associations between sound and touch. In the experiment, we used 120 everyday materials to cover basic material categories that could be associated with fundamental dimensions of tactile perception. Upon contact with these materials, participants expressed their tactile sensations by using Japanese SSWs, and at the same time, evaluated the tactile sensations by semantic differential scales using adjective pairs. Thanks to the variety of testing materials, we were able to demonstrate the existence of systematic associations between sounds and tactile fundamental perceptual dimensions in a more detailed and comprehensive way than ever done so before. In particular, we found that for vowels, positive tactile ratings were associated with the back vowel (/u/, while negative ratings were associated with the front vowels (/i/ and /e/. The central vowels (/o/ and /a/ were mainly associated with rough, hard, and dry feelings. Consonants were categorized based on vocal features and articulation. The category of the voiced consonants (e.g., /dz/ and /g/ corresponded to feelings of roughness, while that of voiceless consonants (e.g., /ʦ/, and /s/ corresponded to feelings of smoothness. The categories of the bilabial plosive (/p/ and /b/ and voiced alveolar nasal (/n/ consonants were mainly related to soft, sticky and wet feelings, while that of voiceless alveolar affricate (/ʦ/ and voiceless velar

  9. Magnetic Tactile Sensor for Braille Reading

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed

    2016-04-27

    We report a biomimetic magnetic tactile sensor for Braille characters reading. The sensor consists of magnetic nanocomposite artificial cilia implemented on magnetic micro sensors. The nanocomposite is produced from the highly elastic polydimethylsiloxane and iron nanowires that exhibit a permanent magnetic behavior. This design enables remote operation and does not require an additional magnetic field to magnetize the nanowires. The highly elastic nanocomposite is easy to pattern, corrosion resistant and thermally stable. The tactile sensors can detect vertical and shear forces, which allows recognizing small changes in surface texture, as in the case of Braille dots. The 6 dots of a braille cell are read from top to bottom with a tactile sensor array consisting of 4 elements and 1 mm long nanocomposite cilia.

  10. Development of a Tactile Sensor Array

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marian, Nicolae; Drimus, Alin; Bilberg, Arne

    2010-01-01

    Flexible grasping robots are needed for enabling automated, profitable and competitive production of small batch sizes including complex handling processes of often fragile objects. This development will create new conditions for value-adding activities in the production of the future world....... The paper describes the related research work we have developed for sensor design, exploration and control for a robot gripping system, in order to analyze normal forces applied on the tactile pixels for gripping force control and generate tactile images for gripping positioning and object recognition....... Section 1 gives an introduction of principles and technologies in tactile sensing for robot grippers. Section 2 presents the sensor cell (taxel) and array design and characterization. Section 3 introduces object recognition and shape analysis ideas showing a few preliminary examples, where geometrical...

  11. Magnetic Tactile Sensor for Braille Reading

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed; Khan, Mohammed; Cardoso, Susana; Kosel, Jü rgen

    2016-01-01

    We report a biomimetic magnetic tactile sensor for Braille characters reading. The sensor consists of magnetic nanocomposite artificial cilia implemented on magnetic micro sensors. The nanocomposite is produced from the highly elastic polydimethylsiloxane and iron nanowires that exhibit a permanent magnetic behavior. This design enables remote operation and does not require an additional magnetic field to magnetize the nanowires. The highly elastic nanocomposite is easy to pattern, corrosion resistant and thermally stable. The tactile sensors can detect vertical and shear forces, which allows recognizing small changes in surface texture, as in the case of Braille dots. The 6 dots of a braille cell are read from top to bottom with a tactile sensor array consisting of 4 elements and 1 mm long nanocomposite cilia.

  12. Unmyelinated tactile cutaneous nerves signal erotic sensations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jönsson, Emma H; Backlund Wasling, Helena; Wagnbeck, Vicktoria; Dimitriadis, Menelaos; Georgiadis, Janniko R; Olausson, Håkan; Croy, Ilona

    2015-06-01

    Intrapersonal touch is a powerful tool for communicating emotions and can among many things evoke feelings of eroticism and sexual arousal. The peripheral neural mechanisms of erotic touch signaling have been less studied. C tactile afferents (unmyelinated low-threshold mechanoreceptors), known to underpin pleasant aspects of touch processing, have been posited to play an important role. In two studies, we investigated the relationship between C tactile activation and the perception of erotic and pleasant touch, using tactile brushing stimulation. In total, 66 healthy subjects (37 women, age range 19-51 years) were examined. In study 1 (n = 20), five different stroking velocities were applied to the forearm and the inner thigh. The participants answered questions about partnership, mood, and touch. In study 2 (n = 46), the same five stroking velocities were applied to the forearm. The participants answered questions about partnership, touch, and sexuality. Both touch eroticism and pleasantness were rated significantly higher for C tactile optimal velocities compared with suboptimal velocities. No difference was found between the ratings of the thigh and the forearm. The velocity-dependent rating curves of pleasantness, intensity, and eroticism differed from each other. Pleasantness was best explained by a quadratic fit, intensity by a linear fit, and eroticism by both. A linear transformation of pleasantness and intensity predicted the observed eroticism ratings reliably. Eroticism ratings were negatively correlated with length of relationship. Touch was rated most erotic when perceived as pleasant and weak. In human hairy skin, perception of pleasantness is correlated with the firing rate of C tactile afferents, and perception of intensity is correlated with the firing rate of Aβ afferents. Accordingly, eroticism may be perceived most readily for touch stimuli that induce high activity in C tactile fibers and low activity in Aβ fibers. © 2015 International

  13. The effects of negative emotions on sensory perception: fear but not anger decreases tactile sensitivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Nicholas J; Schmeichel, Brandon J

    2014-01-01

    Emotions and sensory perceptions are closely intertwined. Of the five senses, sight has been by far the most extensively studied sense in emotion research. Relatively less is known about how emotions influence the other four senses. Touch is essential for nonverbal communication in both humans and other animals. The current investigation tested competing hypotheses about the effect of fear on tactile perception. One hypothesis based on evolutionary considerations predicts that fear enhances sensory perception, including tactile sensitivity. A competing hypothesis based on research on peripheral psychophysiology predicts that fear should decrease tactile sensitivity. Two experiments that induced negative emotional states and measured two-point discrimination ability at the fingertip found that fear reduces tactile sensitivity relative to anger or a neutral control condition (Studies 1 and 2). These findings did not appear to be driven by participants' naïve beliefs about the influence of emotions on touch (Study 3). The results represent the first evidence of the causal impact of emotional states on tactile sensitivity, are consistent with prior evidence for the peripheral physiological effects of fear, and offer novel empirical grounds for developing and advancing theories of emotional influences on sensory perception.

  14. An Experimental Optical Three-axis Tactile Sensor Featured with Hemispherical Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohka, Masahiro; Kobayashi, Hiroaki; Takata, Jumpei; Mitsuya, Yasunaga

    We are developing an optical three-axis tactile sensor capable of acquiring normal and shearing force to mount on a robotic finger. The tactile sensor is based on the principle of an optical waveguide-type tactile sensor, which is composed of an acrylic hemispherical dome, a light source, an array of rubber sensing elements, and a CCD camera. The sensing element of the silicone rubber comprises one columnar feeler and eight conical feelers. The contact areas of the conical feelers, which maintain contact with the acrylic dome, detect the three-axis force applied to the tip of the sensing element. Normal and shearing forces are then calculated from integration and centroid displacement of the grayscale value derived from the conical feeler's contacts. To evaluate the present tactile sensor, we conducted a series of experiments using an x-z stage, a rotational stage, and a force gauge. Although we discovered that the relationship between the integrated grayscale value and normal force depends on the sensor's latitude on the hemispherical surface, it is easy to modify the sensitivity based on the latitude to make the centroid displacement of the grayscale value proportional to the shearing force. When we examined the repeatability of the present tactile sensor with 1,000 load/unload cycles, the error was 2%.

  15. AWARENESS: Tactility and Experience as Transformational Strategy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riisberg, Vibeke; Bang, Anne Louise; Locher, Laura

    2015-01-01

    with users. By employing participatory methods in the field of fashion and textiles, we seek to develop an alternative transformational strategy that may further the design of products and services for a more sustainable future. In the initial theoretical section, we define tactile sensibility, which...... “tacit knowledge” and a “tacit experience”. Finally, we conclude that if designers wish to promote change related to sustainability, it is likely that an embodied participatory dialogue that builds on the combination of user experience and tactile sensibility can be further developed into didactic tools...

  16. Classification of rigid and deformable objects using a novel tactile sensor

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Kootstra, Gert; Bilberg, Arne

    2011-01-01

    . A real time acquisition system scans the data from the array which is then further processed. We validate the properties of the sensor in an application that classifies a number of household objects while performing a palpation procedure with a robotic gripper. Based on the haptic feedback, we classify......In this paper, we present a novel array tactile sensor for use in robotic grippers based on a flexible piezoresistive rubber. We start by describing the physical principles of piezoresistive materials and continue by outlining how to build a flexible array tactile sensor using stitch electrodes...... the results with the ones obtained from an experimental setup that uses a Weiss Robotics tactile sensor with similar characteristics and we conclude by exemplifying how the results of the classification can be used in different industrial applications....

  17. Neural correlates of tactile perception during pre-, peri-, and post-movement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juravle, Georgiana; Heed, Tobias; Spence, Charles; Röder, Brigitte

    2016-05-01

    Tactile information is differentially processed over the various phases of goal-directed movements. Here, event-related potentials (ERPs) were used to investigate the neural correlates of tactile and visual information processing during movement. Participants performed goal-directed reaches for an object placed centrally on the table in front of them. Tactile and visual stimulation (100 ms) was presented in separate trials during the different phases of the movement (i.e. preparation, execution, and post-movement). These stimuli were independently delivered to either the moving or resting hand. In a control condition, the participants only performed the movement, while omission (i.e. movement-only) ERPs were recorded. Participants were instructed to ignore the presence or absence of any sensory events and to concentrate solely on the execution of the movement. Enhanced ERPs were observed 80-200 ms after tactile stimulation, as well as 100-250 ms after visual stimulation: These modulations were greatest during the execution of the goal-directed movement, and they were effector based (i.e. significantly more negative for stimuli presented to the moving hand). Furthermore, ERPs revealed enhanced sensory processing during goal-directed movements for visual stimuli as well. Such enhanced processing of both tactile and visual information during the execution phase suggests that incoming sensory information is continuously monitored for a potential adjustment of the current motor plan. Furthermore, the results reported here also highlight a tight coupling between spatial attention and the execution of motor actions.

  18. Biologically inspired multi-layered synthetic skin for tactile feedback in prosthetic limbs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, Luke; Nguyen, Harrison; Betthauser, Joseph; Kaliki, Rahul; Thakor, Nitish

    2016-08-01

    The human body offers a template for many state-of-the-art prosthetic devices and sensors. In this work, we present a novel, sensorized synthetic skin that mimics the natural multi-layered nature of mechanoreceptors found in healthy glabrous skin to provide tactile information. The multi-layered sensor is made up of flexible piezoresistive textiles that act as force sensitive resistors (FSRs) to convey tactile information, which are embedded within a silicone rubber to resemble the compliant nature of human skin. The top layer of the synthetic skin is capable of detecting small loads less than 5 N whereas the bottom sensing layer responds reliably to loads over 7 N. Finite element analysis (FEA) of a simplified human fingertip and the synthetic skin was performed. Results suggest similarities in behavior during loading. A natural tactile event is simulated by loading the synthetic skin on a prosthetic limb. Results show the sensors' ability to detect applied loads as well as the ability to simulate neural spiking activity based on the derivative and temporal differences of the sensor response. During the tactile loading, the top sensing layer responded 0.24 s faster than the bottom sensing layer. A synthetic biologically-inspired skin such as this will be useful for enhancing the functionality of prosthetic limbs through tactile feedback.

  19. Vibration-enhanced posture stabilization achieved by tactile supplementation: may blind individuals get extra benefits?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magalhães, Fernando Henrique; Kohn, André Fabio

    2011-08-01

    Diminished balance ability poses a serious health risk due to the increased likelihood of falling, and impaired postural stability is significantly associated with blindness and poor vision. Noise stimulation (by improving the detection of sub-threshold somatosensory information) and tactile supplementation (i.e., additional haptic information provided by an external contact surface) have been shown to improve the performance of the postural control system. Moreover, vibratory noise added to the source of tactile supplementation (e.g., applied to a surface that the fingertip touches) has been shown to enhance balance stability more effectively than tactile supplementation alone. In view of the above findings, in addition to the well established consensus that blind subjects show superior abilities in the use of tactile information, we hypothesized that blind subjects may take extra benefits from the vibratory noise added to the tactile supplementation and hence show greater improvements in postural stability than those observed for sighted subjects. If confirmed, this hypothesis may lay the foundation for the development of noise-based assistive devices (e.g., canes, walking sticks) for improving somatosensation and hence prevent falls in blind individuals. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. A Feeling for Numbers: Shared Metric for Symbolic and Tactile Numerosities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian eKrause

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Evidence for an approximate analogue system of numbers has been provided by the finding that the comparison of two numerals takes longer and is more error prone if the semantic distance between the numbers becomes smaller (so-called numerical distance effect. Recent embodied theories suggest that analogue number representations are based on previous sensory experiences and constitute therefore a common magnitude metric shared by multiple domains. Here we demonstrate the existence of a cross-modal semantic distance effect between symbolic and tactile numerosities. Participants received tactile stimulations of different amounts of fingers while reading Arabic digits and indicated verbally whether the amount of stimulated fingers was different from the simultaneously presented digit or not. The larger the semantic distance was between the two numerosities, the faster and more accurate participants made their judgements. This cross-modal numerosity distance effect suggests a direct connection between tactile sensations and the concept of numerical magnitude. A second experiment replicated the interaction between symbolic and tactile numerosities and showed that this effect is not modulated by the participants' finger counting habits. Taken together, our data provide novel evidence for a shared metric for symbolic and tactile numerosites as an instance of an embodied representation of numbers.

  1. Salience of Tactile Cues: An Examination of Tactor Actuator and Tactile Cue Characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-08-01

    Similarly, tactile alerts can help manage and focus attention in a complex high-tempo multitasked environment. Figure 1, while simple, can serve to...tactile cueing on concurrent performance of military and robotics tasks in a simulated multitasking environment. Ergonomics. 2008;51(8):1137–1152...2007;78(3):338. Moorhead IR, Holmes S, Furnell S. Understanding multisensory integration for pilot spatial orientation. Farnborough (UK): QinetiQ

  2. Unmyelinated Tactile Cutaneous Nerves Signal Erotic Sensations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jönsson, Emma H; Backlund Wasling, Helena; Wagnbeck, Vicktoria; Dimitriadis, Menelaos; Georgiadis, Janniko R; Olausson, Håkan; Croy, Ilona

    IntroductionIntrapersonal touch is a powerful tool for communicating emotions and can among many things evoke feelings of eroticism and sexual arousal. The peripheral neural mechanisms of erotic touch signaling have been less studied. C tactile afferents (unmyelinated low-threshold

  3. Compact Tactile Sensors for Robot Fingers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Toby B.; Lussy, David; Gaudiano, Frank; Hulse, Aaron; Diftler, Myron A.; Rodriguez, Dagoberto; Bielski, Paul; Butzer, Melisa

    2004-01-01

    Compact transducer arrays that measure spatial distributions of force or pressure have been demonstrated as prototypes of tactile sensors to be mounted on fingers and palms of dexterous robot hands. The pressure- or force-distribution feedback provided by these sensors is essential for the further development and implementation of robot-control capabilities for humanlike grasping and manipulation.

  4. Testing Tactile Masking between the Forearms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Harris, Laurence R

    2016-02-10

    Masking, in which one stimulus affects the detection of another, is a classic technique that has been used in visual, auditory, and tactile research, usually using stimuli that are close together to reveal local interactions. Masking effects have also been demonstrated in which a tactile stimulus alters the perception of a touch at a distant location. Such effects can provide insight into how components of the body's representations in the brain may be linked. Occasional reports have indicated that touches on one hand or forearm can affect tactile sensitivity at corresponding contralateral locations. To explore the matching of corresponding points across the body, we can measure the spatial tuning and effect of posture on contralateral masking. Careful controls are required to rule out direct effects of the remote stimulus, for example by mechanical transmission, and also attention effects in which thresholds may be altered by the participant's attention being drawn away from the stimulus of interest. The use of this technique is beneficial as a behavioural measure for exploring which parts of the body are functionally connected and whether the two sides of the body interact in a somatotopic representation. This manuscript describes a behavioural protocol that can be used for studying contralateral tactile masking.

  5. Investigating Tactile Stimulation in Symbiotic Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Orso, Valeria; Mazza, Renato; Gamberini, Luciano

    2017-01-01

    The core characteristics of tactile stimuli, i.e., recognition reliability and tolerance to ambient interference, make them an ideal candidate to be integrated into a symbiotic system. The selection of the appropriate stimulation is indeed important in order not to hinder the interaction from...

  6. Footwear discrimination using dynamic tactile information

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Mikov, Vedran

    2017-01-01

    Abstract: This paper shows that it is possible to differentiate among various type of footwear solely by using highly dimensional pressure information provided by a sensorised insole. In order to achieve this, a person equipped with two sensorised insoles streaming real-time tactile data to a com...

  7. Tactile shoe inlays for high speed pressure monitoring

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Mátéfi-Tempfli, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    This work describes the development of flexible tactile sensor shoe inlays for humanoid robots. Their design is based on a sandwich structure of flexible layers with a thin sheet of piezoresistive rubber as main transducer element. The layout and patterning of top and bottom electrodes give 1024...... pressure sensitive cells and the use of high speed electronics and multiplexing algorithms provides frame rates of 100 Hz. The sensors tolerate overloads while showing a consistent output. The developed prototypes show a high potential not only for robotics, but also for use in sensorised human prosthetics....

  8. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan T W Schubert

    Full Text Available Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while ignoring simultaneous tactile distractors at congruent or incongruent locations on the other hand. We probed the interplay of anatomical and external location codes for spatial congruency effects by varying hand posture: the palms either both faced down, or one faced down and one up. In the latter posture, externally congruent target and distractor locations were anatomically incongruent and vice versa. Target locations had to be reported either anatomically ("palm" or "back" of the hand, or externally ("up" or "down" in space. Under anatomical instructions, performance was more accurate for anatomically congruent than incongruent target-distractor pairs. In contrast, under external instructions, performance was more accurate for externally congruent than incongruent pairs. These modulations were evident in sighted and blind individuals. Notably, distractor effects were overall far smaller in blind than in sighted participants, despite comparable target-distractor identification performance. Thus, the absence of developmental vision seems to be associated with an increased ability to focus tactile attention towards a non-spatially defined target. Nevertheless, that blind individuals exhibited effects of hand posture and task instructions in their congruency effects suggests that, like the sighted, they automatically integrate anatomical and external information during tactile localization. Moreover, spatial integration in tactile processing is, thus, flexibly

  9. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schubert, Jonathan T W; Badde, Stephanie; Röder, Brigitte; Heed, Tobias

    2017-01-01

    Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while ignoring simultaneous tactile distractors at congruent or incongruent locations on the other hand. We probed the interplay of anatomical and external location codes for spatial congruency effects by varying hand posture: the palms either both faced down, or one faced down and one up. In the latter posture, externally congruent target and distractor locations were anatomically incongruent and vice versa. Target locations had to be reported either anatomically ("palm" or "back" of the hand), or externally ("up" or "down" in space). Under anatomical instructions, performance was more accurate for anatomically congruent than incongruent target-distractor pairs. In contrast, under external instructions, performance was more accurate for externally congruent than incongruent pairs. These modulations were evident in sighted and blind individuals. Notably, distractor effects were overall far smaller in blind than in sighted participants, despite comparable target-distractor identification performance. Thus, the absence of developmental vision seems to be associated with an increased ability to focus tactile attention towards a non-spatially defined target. Nevertheless, that blind individuals exhibited effects of hand posture and task instructions in their congruency effects suggests that, like the sighted, they automatically integrate anatomical and external information during tactile localization. Moreover, spatial integration in tactile processing is, thus, flexibly adapted by top

  10. The Invisible Universe: A Tactile and Braille Exhibit of Astronomical Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcand, Kimberly; Lestition, K.; Watzke, M.; Steel, S.

    2010-01-01

    As part of the "From Earth to the Universe" (FETTU) project, a NASA-funded tactile exhibit for the visually impaired community was launched in July 2009 at the Martin Luther King Library in D.C. The exhibit is part of the global FETTU exhibit, a project of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. The science content of the exhibit includes explanations of our Sun, Eta Carinae, Crab Nebula, Whirlpool Galaxy, and the electromagnetic spectrum, and was adapted from the NASA-funded Braille/tactile book Touch the Invisible Sky. Multiple geographic locations and venue types have been targeted for the displays. The FETTU-tactile exhibit opens a wider door to experiencing and understanding astronomy, bridging a gap in learning. This exhibit is based upon work supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under proposal 08-EPO08-0068 issued through the Science Mission Directorate.

  11. Risk prediction and impaired tactile sensory perception among cancer patients during chemotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Ana Carolina Lima Ramos; Araújo, Diego Dias de; Chianca, Tânia Couto Machado

    2018-01-08

    to estimate the prevalence of impaired tactile sensory perception, identify risk factors, and establish a risk prediction model among adult patients receiving antineoplastic chemotherapy. historical cohort study based on information obtained from the medical files of 127 patients cared for in the cancer unit of a private hospital in a city in Minas Gerais, Brazil. Data were analyzed using descriptive and bivariate statistics, with survival and multivariate analysis by Cox regression. 57% of the 127 patients included in the study developed impaired tactile sensory perception. The independent variables that caused significant impact, together with time elapsed from the beginning of treatment up to the onset of the condition, were: bone, hepatic and regional lymph node metastases; alcoholism; palliative chemotherapy; and discomfort in lower limbs. impaired tactile sensory perception was common among adult patients during chemotherapy, indicating the need to implement interventions designed for early identification and treatment of this condition.

  12. Design of a flexible tactile sensor for classification of rigid and deformable objects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Kootstra, Gert; Bilberg, Arne

    2014-01-01

    of the sensor in an active object-classification system. A robotic gripper with two sensors mounted on its fingers performs a palpation procedure on a set of objects. By squeezing an object, the robot actively explores the material properties, and the system acquires tactile information corresponding......For both humans and robots, tactile sensing is important for interaction with the environment: it is the core sensing used for exploration and manipulation of objects. In this paper, we present a novel tactile-array sensor based on flexible piezoresistive rubber.We describe the design of the sensor...... and data acquisition system.We evaluate the sensitivity and robustness of the sensor, and show that it is consistent over time with little relaxation. Furthermore, the sensor has the benefit of being flexible, having a high resolution, it is easy to mount, and simple to manufacture. We demonstrate the use...

  13. Fundamental study on formulation design of skin care products by modeling of tactile sensation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akiyama, Yoko; Mishima, Fumihito; Nishijima, Shigehiro

    2013-01-01

    The objective of this study is to construct a method to quantify and formulate the human tactile sensation. We have tried to indicate the sensory scores of tactile sensation as a combination of the physical values of skin care products. Consequently, the extracted principle factors of the sensory properties could be related to the physical values by multiple regression analysis. For the next step, we investigated the physical mechanism of tactile sensation, and proposed a method to formulate the sensory properties. A method to formulate the sensory properties of skin care products was constructed based on the relation between sensory values, principal factors, physical values and composition. The method was verified by sensory evaluation.

  14. The Scanning of Power Deformation of Tyre Surface by Tactile Piesoresistive sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferdinand Hurta

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Our work describes a static non-destructive method of measuring the contact pressures of tyres. The distribution of contact pressures during the contact of the tyre with a solid base represents one of the indicators we use. In this process, it is convenient to use matrix tactile sensors based on piezoresistive method of data collection.

  15. The neural network involved in a bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination task: a functional imaging study at 3 T

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Habas, Christophe; Cabanis, Emmanuel A. [UPMC Paris 6, Service de NeuroImagerie, Hopital des Quinze-Vingts, Paris (France)

    2007-08-15

    The cerebral and cerebellar network involved in a bimanual object recognition was studied in blood oxygenation dependent level functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Nine healthy right-handed volunteers were scanned (1) while performing bilateral finger movements (nondiscrimination motor task), and (2) while performing a bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination task using small chess pieces (tactile discrimination task). Extensive activations were specifically observed in the parietal (SII, superior lateral lobule), insular, prefrontal, cingulate and neocerebellar cortices (HVIII), with a left predominance in motor areas, during the tactile discrimination task in contrast to the findings during the nondiscrimination motor task. Bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination recruits multiple sensorimotor and associative cerebral and neocerebellar networks (including the cerebellar second homunculus, HVIII), comparable to the neural circuits involved in unimanual tactile object recognition. (orig.)

  16. Design and realization of a tactile switches module with capacitive sensing method implemented with a microcontroller

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Capineri

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this research project is the architecture and the design of an electronic system for controlling domestic tactile switches to be integrated into a home automation system based on the KNX standard. All the steps that led to the fulfillment of the finished prototype are reported, from the study and design of the capacitive tactile sensors and the electronic control board according to the specifications imposed by KNX standard. The touch event detection is reached as a trade-off with the footprint requirements of the switch. Experimental results of the fabricated prototype are presented to demonstrate the feasibility of this device.

  17. Integration of anatomical and external response mappings explains crossing effects in tactile localization: A probabilistic modeling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badde, Stephanie; Heed, Tobias; Röder, Brigitte

    2016-04-01

    To act upon a tactile stimulus its original skin-based, anatomical spatial code has to be transformed into an external, posture-dependent reference frame, a process known as tactile remapping. When the limbs are crossed, anatomical and external location codes are in conflict, leading to a decline in tactile localization accuracy. It is unknown whether this impairment originates from the integration of the resulting external localization response with the original, anatomical one or from a failure of tactile remapping in crossed postures. We fitted probabilistic models based on these diverging accounts to the data from three tactile localization experiments. Hand crossing disturbed tactile left-right location choices in all experiments. Furthermore, the size of these crossing effects was modulated by stimulus configuration and task instructions. The best model accounted for these results by integration of the external response mapping with the original, anatomical one, while applying identical integration weights for uncrossed and crossed postures. Thus, the model explained the data without assuming failures of remapping. Moreover, performance differences across tasks were accounted for by non-individual parameter adjustments, indicating that individual participants' task adaptation results from one common functional mechanism. These results suggest that remapping is an automatic and accurate process, and that the observed localization impairments in touch result from a cognitively controlled integration process that combines anatomically and externally coded responses.

  18. Differences in Early Stages of Tactile ERP Temporal Sequence (P100) in Cortical Organization during Passive Tactile Stimulation in Children with Blindness and Controls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz Alonso, Tomás; Santos, Juan Matías; Ortiz Terán, Laura; Borrego Hernández, Mayelin; Poch Broto, Joaquín; de Erausquin, Gabriel Alejandro

    2015-01-01

    Compared to their seeing counterparts, people with blindness have a greater tactile capacity. Differences in the physiology of object recognition between people with blindness and seeing people have been well documented, but not when tactile stimuli require semantic processing. We used a passive vibrotactile device to focus on the differences in spatial brain processing evaluated with event related potentials (ERP) in children with blindness (n = 12) vs. normally seeing children (n = 12), when learning a simple spatial task (lines with different orientations) or a task involving recognition of letters, to describe the early stages of its temporal sequence (from 80 to 220 msec) and to search for evidence of multi-modal cortical organization. We analysed the P100 of the ERP. Children with blindness showed earlier latencies for cognitive (perceptual) event related potentials, shorter reaction times, and (paradoxically) worse ability to identify the spatial direction of the stimulus. On the other hand, they are equally proficient in recognizing stimuli with semantic content (letters). The last observation is consistent with the role of P100 on somatosensory-based recognition of complex forms. The cortical differences between seeing control and blind groups, during spatial tactile discrimination, are associated with activation in visual pathway (occipital) and task-related association (temporal and frontal) areas. The present results show that early processing of tactile stimulation conveying cross modal information differs in children with blindness or with normal vision. PMID:26225827

  19. A new dynamic tactile display for reconfigurable braille: implementation and tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motto Ros, Paolo; Dante, Vittorio; Mesin, Luca; Petetti, Erminio; Del Giudice, Paolo; Pasero, Eros

    2014-01-01

    Different tactile interfaces have been proposed to represent either text (braille) or, in a few cases, tactile large-area screens as replacements for visual displays. None of the implementations so far can be customized to match users' preferences, perceptual differences and skills. Optimal choices in these respects are still debated; we approach a solution by designing a flexible device allowing the user to choose key parameters of tactile transduction. We present here a new dynamic tactile display, a 8 × 8 matrix of plastic pins based on well-established and reliable piezoelectric technology to offer high resolution (pin gap 0.7mm) as well as tunable strength of the pins displacement, and refresh rate up to 50s(-1). It can reproduce arbitrary patterns, allowing it to serve the dual purpose of providing, depending on contingent user needs, tactile rendering of non-character information, and reconfigurable braille rendering. Given the relevance of the latter functionality for the expected average user, we considered testing braille encoding by volunteers a benchmark of primary importance. Tests were performed to assess the acceptance and usability with minimal training, and to check whether the offered flexibility was indeed perceived by the subject as an added value compared to conventional braille devices. Different mappings between braille dots and actual tactile pins were implemented to match user needs. Performances of eight experienced braille readers were defined as the fraction of correct identifications of rendered content. Different information contents were tested (median performance on random strings, words, sentences identification was about 75%, 85%, 98%, respectively, with a significant increase, p < 0.01), obtaining statistically significant improvements in performance during the tests (p < 0.05). Experimental results, together with qualitative ratings provided by the subjects, show a good acceptance and the effectiveness of the proposed solution.

  20. A New Dynamic Tactile Display for Reconfigurable Braille: Implementation and Tests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo eMotto Ros

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Different tactile interfaces have been proposed to represent either text (braille or, in a few cases, tactile large-area screens as replacements for visual displays. None of the implementations so far can be customized to match users preferences, perceptual differences and skills. Optimal choices in these respects are still debated; we approach a solution by designing a flexible device allowing the user to choose key parameters of tactile transduction.We present here a new dynamic tactile display, a 8×8 matrix of plastic pins based on well-established and reliable piezoelectric technology to offer high resolution (pin gap 0.7 mm as well as tunable strength of the pins displacement, and refresh rate up to 50 s-1. It can reproduce arbitrary patterns, allowing it to serve the dual purpose of providing, depending on contingent user needs, tactile rendering of non-character information, and reconfigurable braille rendering. Given the relevance of the latter functionality for the expected average user, we considered testing braille encoding by volunteers a benchmark of primary importance. Tests were performed to assess the acceptance and usability with minimal training, and to check whether the offered flexibility was indeed perceived by the subject as an added value compared to conventional braille devices. Different mappings between braille dots and actual tactile pins were implemented to match user needs.Performances of eight experienced braille readers were defined as the fraction of correct identifications of rendered content. Different information contents were tested (median performance on random strings, words, sentences identification was about 75%, 85%, 98%, respectively, with a significant increase, p< 0.01, obtaining statistically significant improvements in performance during the tests (p< 0.05. Experimental results, together with qualitative ratings provided by the subjects, show a good acceptance and the effectiveness of the proposed

  1. Development of CMOS MEMS inductive type tactile sensor with the integration of chrome steel ball force interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeh, Sheng-Kai; Chang, Heng-Chung; Fang, Weileun

    2018-04-01

    This study presents an inductive tactile sensor with a chrome steel ball sensing interface based on the commercially available standard complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) process (the TSMC 0.18 µm 1P6M CMOS process). The tactile senor has a deformable polymer layer as the spring of the device and no fragile suspended thin film structures are required. As a tactile force is applied on the chrome steel ball, the polymer would deform. The distance between the chrome steel ball and the sensing coil would changed. Thus, the tactile force can be detected by the inductance change of the sensing coil. In short, the chrome steel ball acts as a tactile bump as well as the sensing interface. Experimental results show that the proposed inductive tactile sensor has a sensing range of 0-1.4 N with a sensitivity of 9.22(%/N) and nonlinearity of 2%. Preliminary wireless sensing test is also demonstrated. Moreover, the influence of the process and material issues on the sensor performances have also been investigated.

  2. Tactile object familiarity in the blind brain reveals the supramodal perceptual-mnemonic nature of the perirhinal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura eCacciamani

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This study is the first to investigate the neural underpinnings of tactile object familiarity in the blind during both perception and memory. In the sighted, the perirhinal cortex (PRC has been implicated in the assessment of visual object familiarity—a crucial everyday task—as evidenced by reduced activation when an object becomes familiar. Here, to examine the PRC’s role in tactile object familiarity in the absence of vision, we trained blind subjects on a unique memory-guided drawing technique and measured brain activity while they perceptually explored raised-line drawings, drew them from tactile memory, and scribbled (control. FMRI before and after a week of training revealed a significant decrease in PRC activation from pre- to post-training (i.e., from unfamiliar to familiar during perceptual exploration as well as memory-guided drawing, but not scribbling. This familiarity-based reduction is the first evidence that the PRC represents tactile object familiarity in the blind. Furthermore, the finding of this effect during both tactile perception and tactile memory provides the critical link in establishing the PRC as a structure whose representations are supramodal for both perception and memory.

  3. Effects of Tactile Sensations during Finger Painting on Mindfulness, Emotions, and Scope of Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanko-Kaczmarek, Maja; Kaczmarek, Lukasz D.

    2016-01-01

    Research has shown that creative performance, such as painting, influences affective and cognitive processes. Yet little is known about how tactile sensations experienced during painting determine what individuals feel and how they think while they create. Based on prior research, finger painting (compared to brush painting) was expected to…

  4. 5G-Enabled Tactile Internet

    OpenAIRE

    Simsek, Meryem; Aijaz, Adnan; Dohler, Mischa; Sachs, Joachim; Fettweis, Gerhard

    2016-01-01

    The long-term ambition of the Tactile Internet is to enable a democratization of skill, and how it is being delivered globally. An integral part of this is to be able to transmit touch in perceived real-time, which is enabled by suitable robotics and haptics equipment at the edges, along with an unprecedented communications network. The fifth generation (5G) mobile communications systems will underpin this emerging Internet at the wireless edge. This paper presents the most important technolo...

  5. Tactile maze solving in congenitally blind individuals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gagnon, Léa; Kupers, Ron; Schneider, Fabien C

    2010-01-01

    and environmental cues such as temperature and echolocation. We hypothesize that by limiting these cues, blind individuals will lose their advantage compared with controls in spatial navigation tasks. We therefore evaluated the performance of blind and sighted individuals in small-scale, tactile multiple T mazes....... Our results show that blindfolded sighted controls outperformed blind participants in the route-learning tasks. This suggests that, contrary to indoor large-scale spaces, navigational skills inside small-scale spaces benefit from visual experience....

  6. Conveying Looming with a Localized Tactile Cue

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-04-01

    used to feel forward, in order to be warned of obstacles and passages. Moreover, when people are deprived of a normal sense of touch in their feet...evidence that vibrotactile flow fields can be exploited to modify feelings of self-motion. Kolev and Rupert (2008) reported that vibrotactile flow could...1970) later described the use of this site for two-dimensional tracking of moving targets. More recently, while testing sites for a tactile prosthesis

  7. Enhanced tactile encoding and memory recognition in congenital blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Angiulli, Amedeo; Waraich, Paul

    2002-06-01

    Several behavioural studies have shown that early-blind persons possess superior tactile skills. Since neurophysiological data show that early-blind persons recruit visual as well as somatosensory cortex to carry out tactile processing (cross-modal plasticity), blind persons' sharper tactile skills may be related to cortical re-organisation resulting from loss of vision early in their life. To examine the nature of blind individuals' tactile superiority and its implications for cross-modal plasticity, we compared the tactile performance of congenitally totally blind, low-vision and sighted children on raised-line picture identification test and re-test, assessing effects of task familiarity, exploratory strategy and memory recognition. What distinguished the blind from the other children was higher memory recognition and higher tactile encoding associated with efficient exploration. These results suggest that enhanced perceptual encoding and recognition memory may be two cognitive correlates of cross-modal plasticity in congenital blindness.

  8. Tactile spatial resolution in blind braille readers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Boven, R W; Hamilton, R H; Kauffman, T; Keenan, J P; Pascual-Leone, A

    2000-06-27

    To determine if blind people have heightened tactile spatial acuity. Recently, studies using magnetic source imaging and somatosensory evoked potentials have shown that the cortical representation of the reading fingers of blind Braille readers is expanded compared to that of fingers of sighted subjects. Furthermore, the visual cortex is activated during certain tactile tasks in blind subjects but not sighted subjects. The authors hypothesized that the expanded cortical representation of fingers used in Braille reading may reflect an enhanced fidelity in the neural transmission of spatial details of a stimulus. If so, the quantitative limit of spatial acuity would be superior in blind people. The authors employed a grating orientation discrimination task in which threshold performance is accounted for by the spatial resolution limits of the neural image evoked by a stimulus. The authors quantified the psychophysical limits of spatial acuity at the middle and index fingers of 15 blind Braille readers and 15 sighted control subjects. The mean grating orientation threshold was significantly (p = 0.03) lower in the blind group (1.04 mm) compared to the sighted group (1.46 mm). The self-reported dominant reading finger in blind subjects had a mean grating orientation threshold of 0.80 mm, which was significantly better than other fingers tested. Thresholds at non-Braille reading fingers in blind subjects averaged 1.12 mm, which were also superior to sighted subjects' performances. Superior tactile spatial acuity in blind Braille readers may represent an adaptive, behavioral correlate of cortical plasticity.

  9. Research for improved flexible tactile sensor sensitivity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yun, Hae Yong; Kim, Ho Chan [Andong National University, Andong (Korea, Republic of); Lee, In Hwan [Chungbuk National University, Chungju (Korea, Republic of)

    2015-11-15

    With the development of robotic technologies, in recent years these technologies have been applied to multidisciplinary fields of study. To operate similarly to a human being, many robot technologies require devices that can receive exterior stimulus, temperature, visual data, and the sense of smell, etc. The robot's hand needs sensor devices that can receive exterior stimuli in order to operate similarly to human skin. The flexible tactile sensor for the robot has to be manufactured to have a shape similar to the shape of human skin. The research studied the development of a system and materials that will enable exterior stimuli to be received effectively. This research used carbon nano tube as a material. Carbon nano tube is used because it has a high electrical conductivity and outstanding mechanical characteristics. In addition, the two composite Materials are used to improve the stimulation sensitivity at different rates, the flexible tactile sensor to measure the sensitivity. Using 3D printing technology, the fabrication of a flexible tactile sensor system is introduced.

  10. Research for improved flexible tactile sensor sensitivity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yun, Hae Yong; Kim, Ho Chan; Lee, In Hwan

    2015-01-01

    With the development of robotic technologies, in recent years these technologies have been applied to multidisciplinary fields of study. To operate similarly to a human being, many robot technologies require devices that can receive exterior stimulus, temperature, visual data, and the sense of smell, etc. The robot's hand needs sensor devices that can receive exterior stimuli in order to operate similarly to human skin. The flexible tactile sensor for the robot has to be manufactured to have a shape similar to the shape of human skin. The research studied the development of a system and materials that will enable exterior stimuli to be received effectively. This research used carbon nano tube as a material. Carbon nano tube is used because it has a high electrical conductivity and outstanding mechanical characteristics. In addition, the two composite Materials are used to improve the stimulation sensitivity at different rates, the flexible tactile sensor to measure the sensitivity. Using 3D printing technology, the fabrication of a flexible tactile sensor system is introduced.

  11. Pure Amorphagnosia without Tactile Object Agnosia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinichirou Kubota

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available A 54-year-old female showed amorphagnosia without ahylognosia and tactile agnosia 40 days after the onset of right cerebral infarction. Her basic somatosensory functions were normal. The appreciation of substance qualities (hylognosia was preserved, but the patient’s inability to recognize the size and shape (morphagnosia was confined to 2- and 3-dimensional shapes (amorphagnosia in the left hand. However, the patient’s ability to recognize real daily objects was well preserved. Brain MRI after admission showed ischemic lesions confined to the right pre- and postcentral gyri and the medial frontal cortex on DWI and FLAIR images. An analysis of SPECT images revealed that the most decreased areas were localized to the pre- and postcentral gyri, superior and inferior parietal lobules, supramarginal gyrus, and angular gyrus. Considering the previous reported cases, the responsible lesion for the impaired perception of hylognosia and morphagnosia may not necessarily be confined to the right hemisphere. To date, 5 reports (6 cases of tactile agnosia have been published; 4 cases presented with both ahylognosia and amorphagnosia, while 1 presented with only amorphagnosia, and another showed amorphagnosia and mild ahylognosia. Our case is the first to present with only amorphagnosia without tactile agnosia. The mechanism for the well-preserved recognition of real objects may depend on the preserved hylognosia. Of note, there have been no reports showing only ahylognosia without amorphagnosia. Further studies are necessary to clarify whether or not patients with preserved hylognosia or morphagnosia retain the ability to perceive real objects.

  12. Pure Amorphagnosia without Tactile Object Agnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubota, Shinichirou; Yamada, Mai; Satoh, Hideyo; Satoh, Akira; Tsujihata, Mitsuhiro

    2017-01-01

    A 54-year-old female showed amorphagnosia without ahylognosia and tactile agnosia 40 days after the onset of right cerebral infarction. Her basic somatosensory functions were normal. The appreciation of substance qualities (hylognosia) was preserved, but the patient's inability to recognize the size and shape (morphagnosia) was confined to 2- and 3-dimensional shapes (amorphagnosia) in the left hand. However, the patient's ability to recognize real daily objects was well preserved. Brain MRI after admission showed ischemic lesions confined to the right pre- and postcentral gyri and the medial frontal cortex on DWI and FLAIR images. An analysis of SPECT images revealed that the most decreased areas were localized to the pre- and postcentral gyri, superior and inferior parietal lobules, supramarginal gyrus, and angular gyrus. Considering the previous reported cases, the responsible lesion for the impaired perception of hylognosia and morphagnosia may not necessarily be confined to the right hemisphere. To date, 5 reports (6 cases) of tactile agnosia have been published; 4 cases presented with both ahylognosia and amorphagnosia, while 1 presented with only amorphagnosia, and another showed amorphagnosia and mild ahylognosia. Our case is the first to present with only amorphagnosia without tactile agnosia. The mechanism for the well-preserved recognition of real objects may depend on the preserved hylognosia. Of note, there have been no reports showing only ahylognosia without amorphagnosia. Further studies are necessary to clarify whether or not patients with preserved hylognosia or morphagnosia retain the ability to perceive real objects.

  13. Generalization of a tactile stimulus in horses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dougherty, D M; Lewis, P

    1993-05-01

    Using horses, we investigated the control of operant behavior by a tactile stimulus (the training stimulus) and the generalization of behavior to six other similar test stimuli. In a stall, the experimenters mounted a response panel in the doorway. Located on this panel were a response lever and a grain dispenser. The experimenters secured a tactile-stimulus belt to the horse's back. The stimulus belt was constructed by mounting seven solenoids along a piece of burlap in a manner that allowed each to provide the delivery of a tactile stimulus, a repetitive light tapping, at different locations (spaced 10.0 cm apart) along the horse's back. Two preliminary steps were necessary before generalization testing: training a measurable response (lip pressing) and training on several reinforcement schedules in the presence of a training stimulus (tapping by one of the solenoids). We then gave each horse two generalization test sessions. Results indicated that the horses' behavior was effectively controlled by the training stimulus. Horses made the greatest number of responses to the training stimulus, and the tendency to respond to the other test stimuli diminished as the stimuli became farther away from the training stimulus. These findings are discussed in the context of behavioral principles and their relevance to the training of horses.

  14. Feasibility study of patient motion monitoring using tactile array sensor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Tae Ho; Kang, Seong Hee; Kim, Dong Su; Cho, Min Seok; Kim, Kyeong Hyeon; Suh, Tae Suk; Kim, Si Yong

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate patient pretreatment set-up error and intra-fraction motion using the tactile array sensors (Pressure Profile Systems Inc, Los Angeles, CA) which could measure distributed pressure profiles along the contacting surface and to check a feasibility of the sensor (tactile array sensor) in the patient motion monitoring. Laser alignment and optical camera based monitoring system are very useful for reduce patient set-up error but these systems could not monitor the blind area like patient's back position. Actually after patient alignment using laser or optical monitoring system, it was assumed that there is no error in the patient's back position (pressure profile distribution). But if an error occurs in the patient's back position, it will affect the radiation therapy accuracy. In spite of optical motion monitoring or using the immobilization tool, distributed pressure profiles of patient's back position was changed during inter and intra-fraction. For more accurate patient set-up, blind area (patient's back) monitoring was necessary. We expect that the proposed method will be very useful for make up for the weakness of optical monitoring method

  15. Feasibility study of patient motion monitoring using tactile array sensor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Tae Ho; Kang, Seong Hee; Kim, Dong Su; Cho, Min Seok; Kim, Kyeong Hyeon; Suh, Tae Suk [Dept. of Biomedical Engineering, Research Institute of Biomedical Engineering, the Catholic University of Korea, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Si Yong [Dept. of Radiation Oncology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond (United States)

    2014-11-15

    The aim of this study is to evaluate patient pretreatment set-up error and intra-fraction motion using the tactile array sensors (Pressure Profile Systems Inc, Los Angeles, CA) which could measure distributed pressure profiles along the contacting surface and to check a feasibility of the sensor (tactile array sensor) in the patient motion monitoring. Laser alignment and optical camera based monitoring system are very useful for reduce patient set-up error but these systems could not monitor the blind area like patient's back position. Actually after patient alignment using laser or optical monitoring system, it was assumed that there is no error in the patient's back position (pressure profile distribution). But if an error occurs in the patient's back position, it will affect the radiation therapy accuracy. In spite of optical motion monitoring or using the immobilization tool, distributed pressure profiles of patient's back position was changed during inter and intra-fraction. For more accurate patient set-up, blind area (patient's back) monitoring was necessary. We expect that the proposed method will be very useful for make up for the weakness of optical monitoring method.

  16. Design and Qualitative Evaluation of Tactile Devices for Stroke Rehabilitation

    OpenAIRE

    Merrett, Geoff V; Metcalf, Cheryl D; Zheng, Deyi; Cunningham, Sarah; Barrow, Stuart; Demain, Sara H

    2011-01-01

    Rehabilitation environments combining virtual reality with everyday motor tasks can promote recovery from neurological illness, such as stroke. Tactile devices, providing physical stimulation to the skin, may improve motor retraining. While many tactile devices have been reported, there is a distinct paucity of studies evaluating how they are perceived. This multidisciplinary research has investigated three tactile devices (vibration motors, a motor-driven ‘squeezer’, and shape memory alloys)...

  17. Tactile Studio, artigianato digitale al servizio dell’accessibilità

    OpenAIRE

    Riccardo Leone; Philippe Moreau

    2017-01-01

    Tactile Studio is a design agency for universal design in arts and culture. Tactile experiences are essential for people with visual impairm ents and gr eatly assist many people with cognitive disabilities. Tactile experiences should be included in every exhibition. Children, older adults, people with language diff iculties or fr om diff erent cultural backgr ounds..To name an audience who will not benefit fr om these designs is impossible. Pioneers in France, the nation's top museums have en...

  18. Autism spectrum disorder in the scope of tactile processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Mikkelsen

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Sensory processing abnormalities are among the most common behavioral phenotypes seen in autism spectrum disorder (ASD, typically characterized by either over- or under-responsiveness to stimulation. In this review, we focus on tactile processing dysfunction in ASD. We firstly review clinical studies wherein sensitivity to tactile stimuli has traditionally been assessed by self-, parent- and experimenter-reports. We also discuss recent investigations using psychophysical paradigms that gauge individual tactile thresholds. These more experimentally rigorous studies allow for more objective assessments of tactile abnormalities in ASD. However, little is understood about the neurobiological mechanisms underlying these abnormalities, or the link between tactile abnormalities and ASD symptoms. Neurobiological research that has been conducted has pointed toward dysfunction in the excitation/inhibition balance of the central nervous system of those with ASD. This review covers recent efforts that have investigated tactile dysfunction in ASD from clinical and behavioral perspectives, and some of the efforts to link these to neurobiology. On the whole, findings are inconsistent, which can be ascribed to the subjectivity of clinical assessments, the heterogeneity of ASD cohorts, and the diversity of tactile sensitivity measures. Future endeavors into understanding tactile processing differences in ASD will greatly benefit from controlled experiments driven by neurobiological hypotheses. Keywords: Autism spectrum disorder, Psychophysics, Review, Touch, Somatosensory, Tactile processing

  19. A Modified Tactile Brush Algorithm for Complex Touch Gestures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ragan, Eric [Texas A& M University

    2015-01-01

    Several researchers have investigated phantom tactile sensation (i.e., the perception of a nonexistent actuator between two real actuators) and apparent tactile motion (i.e., the perception of a moving actuator due to time delays between onsets of multiple actuations). Prior work has focused primarily on determining appropriate Durations of Stimulation (DOS) and Stimulus Onset Asynchronies (SOA) for simple touch gestures, such as a single finger stroke. To expand upon this knowledge, we investigated complex touch gestures involving multiple, simultaneous points of contact, such as a whole hand touching the arm. To implement complex touch gestures, we modified the Tactile Brush algorithm to support rectangular areas of tactile stimulation.

  20. Discrimination of Dynamic Tactile Contact by Temporally Precise Event Sensing in Spiking Neuromorphic Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Wang Wei; Kukreja, Sunil L; Thakor, Nitish V

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents a neuromorphic tactile encoding methodology that utilizes a temporally precise event-based representation of sensory signals. We introduce a novel concept where touch signals are characterized as patterns of millisecond precise binary events to denote pressure changes. This approach is amenable to a sparse signal representation and enables the extraction of relevant features from thousands of sensing elements with sub-millisecond temporal precision. We also proposed measures adopted from computational neuroscience to study the information content within the spiking representations of artificial tactile signals. Implemented on a state-of-the-art 4096 element tactile sensor array with 5.2 kHz sampling frequency, we demonstrate the classification of transient impact events while utilizing 20 times less communication bandwidth compared to frame based representations. Spiking sensor responses to a large library of contact conditions were also synthesized using finite element simulations, illustrating an 8-fold improvement in information content and a 4-fold reduction in classification latency when millisecond-precise temporal structures are available. Our research represents a significant advance, demonstrating that a neuromorphic spatiotemporal representation of touch is well suited to rapid identification of critical contact events, making it suitable for dynamic tactile sensing in robotic and prosthetic applications.

  1. A Novel Tactile Sensor with Electromagnetic Induction and Its Application on Stick-Slip Interaction Detection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanjie Liu

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Real-time detection of contact states, such as stick-slip interaction between a robot and an object on its end effector, is crucial for the robot to grasp and manipulate the object steadily. This paper presents a novel tactile sensor based on electromagnetic induction and its application on stick-slip interaction. An equivalent cantilever-beam model of the tactile sensor was built and capable of constructing the relationship between the sensor output and the friction applied on the sensor. With the tactile sensor, a new method to detect stick-slip interaction on the contact surface between the object and the sensor is proposed based on the characteristics of friction change. Furthermore, a prototype was developed for a typical application, stable wafer transferring on a wafer transfer robot, by considering the spatial magnetic field distribution and the sensor size according to the requirements of wafer transfer. The experimental results validate the sensing mechanism of the tactile sensor and verify its feasibility of detecting stick-slip on the contact surface between the wafer and the sensor. The sensing mechanism also provides a new approach to detect the contact state on the soft-rigid surface in other robot-environment interaction systems.

  2. A Novel Tactile Sensor with Electromagnetic Induction and Its Application on Stick-Slip Interaction Detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanjie; Han, Haijun; Liu, Tao; Yi, Jingang; Li, Qingguo; Inoue, Yoshio

    2016-01-01

    Real-time detection of contact states, such as stick-slip interaction between a robot and an object on its end effector, is crucial for the robot to grasp and manipulate the object steadily. This paper presents a novel tactile sensor based on electromagnetic induction and its application on stick-slip interaction. An equivalent cantilever-beam model of the tactile sensor was built and capable of constructing the relationship between the sensor output and the friction applied on the sensor. With the tactile sensor, a new method to detect stick-slip interaction on the contact surface between the object and the sensor is proposed based on the characteristics of friction change. Furthermore, a prototype was developed for a typical application, stable wafer transferring on a wafer transfer robot, by considering the spatial magnetic field distribution and the sensor size according to the requirements of wafer transfer. The experimental results validate the sensing mechanism of the tactile sensor and verify its feasibility of detecting stick-slip on the contact surface between the wafer and the sensor. The sensing mechanism also provides a new approach to detect the contact state on the soft-rigid surface in other robot-environment interaction systems. PMID:27023545

  3. A Review of Smart Materials in Tactile Actuators for Information Delivery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xin Xie

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available As the largest organ in the human body, the skin provides the important sensory channel for humans to receive external stimulations based on touch. By the information perceived through touch, people can feel and guess the properties of objects, like weight, temperature, textures, and motion, etc. In fact, those properties are nerve stimuli to our brain received by different kinds of receptors in the skin. Mechanical, electrical, and thermal stimuli can stimulate these receptors and cause different information to be conveyed through the nerves. Technologies for actuators to provide mechanical, electrical or thermal stimuli have been developed. These include static or vibrational actuation, electrostatic stimulation, focused ultrasound, and more. Smart materials, such as piezoelectric materials, carbon nanotubes, and shape memory alloys, play important roles in providing actuation for tactile sensation. This paper aims to review the background biological knowledge of human tactile sensing, to give an understanding of how we sense and interact with the world through the sense of touch, as well as the conventional and state-of-the-art technologies of tactile actuators for tactile feedback delivery.

  4. A finger-shaped tactile sensor for fabric surfaces evaluation by 2-dimensional active sliding touch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Haihua; Han, Yezhen; Song, Aiguo; Chen, Shanguang; Wang, Chunhui; Wang, Zheng

    2014-03-11

    Sliding tactile perception is a basic function for human beings to determine the mechanical properties of object surfaces and recognize materials. Imitating this process, this paper proposes a novel finger-shaped tactile sensor based on a thin piezoelectric polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) film for surface texture measurement. A parallelogram mechanism is designed to ensure that the sensor applies a constant contact force perpendicular to the object surface, and a 2-dimensional movable mechanical structure is utilized to generate the relative motion at a certain speed between the sensor and the object surface. By controlling the 2-dimensional motion of the finger-shaped sensor along the object surface, small height/depth variation of surface texture changes the output charge of PVDF film then surface texture can be measured. In this paper, the finger-shaped tactile sensor is used to evaluate and classify five different kinds of linen. Fast Fourier Transformation (FFT) is utilized to get original attribute data of surface in the frequency domain, and principal component analysis (PCA) is used to compress the attribute data and extract feature information. Finally, low dimensional features are classified by Support Vector Machine (SVM). The experimental results show that this finger-shaped tactile sensor is effective and high accurate for discriminating the five textures.

  5. A modified analytical model to study the sensing performance of a flexible capacitive tactile sensor array

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liang, Guanhao; Wang, Yancheng; Mei, Deqing; Xi, Kailun; Chen, Zichen

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents a modified analytical model to study the sensing performance of a flexible capacitive tactile sensor array, which utilizes solid polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) film as the dielectric layer. To predict the deformation of the sensing unit and capacitance changes, each sensing unit is simplified into a three-layer plate structure and divided into central, edge and corner regions. The plate structure and the three regions are studied by the general and modified models, respectively. For experimental validation, the capacitive tactile sensor array with 8  ×  8 (= 64) sensing units is fabricated. Experiments are conducted by measuring the capacitance changes versus applied external forces and compared with the general and modified models’ predictions. For the developed tactile sensor array, the sensitivity predicted by the modified analytical model is 1.25%/N, only 0.8% discrepancy from the experimental measurement. Results demonstrate that the modified analytical model can accurately predict the sensing performance of the sensor array and could be utilized for model-based optimal capacitive tactile sensor array design. (paper)

  6. Supramodal theta, gamma, and sustained fields predict modality-specific modulations of alpha and beta oscillations during visual and tactile working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ede, F.L. van; Jensen, O.; Maris, E.G.G.

    2017-01-01

    Flexible control over currently relevant sensory representations is an essential feature of primate cognition. We investigated the neurophysiological bases of such flexible control in humans during an intermodal working memory task in which participants retained visual or tactile sequences. Using

  7. Acoustic Tactile Representation of Visual Information

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Pubudu Madhawa

    Our goal is to explore the use of hearing and touch to convey graphical and pictorial information to visually impaired people. Our focus is on dynamic, interactive display of visual information using existing, widely available devices, such as smart phones and tablets with touch sensitive screens. We propose a new approach for acoustic-tactile representation of visual signals that can be implemented on a touch screen and allows the user to actively explore a two-dimensional layout consisting of one or more objects with a finger or a stylus while listening to auditory feedback via stereo headphones. The proposed approach is acoustic-tactile because sound is used as the primary source of information for object localization and identification, while touch is used for pointing and kinesthetic feedback. A static overlay of raised-dot tactile patterns can also be added. A key distinguishing feature of the proposed approach is the use of spatial sound (directional and distance cues) to facilitate the active exploration of the layout. We consider a variety of configurations for acoustic-tactile rendering of object size, shape, identity, and location, as well as for the overall perception of simple layouts and scenes. While our primary goal is to explore the fundamental capabilities and limitations of representing visual information in acoustic-tactile form, we also consider a number of relatively simple configurations that can be tied to specific applications. In particular, we consider a simple scene layout consisting of objects in a linear arrangement, each with a distinct tapping sound, which we compare to a ''virtual cane.'' We will also present a configuration that can convey a ''Venn diagram.'' We present systematic subjective experiments to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed display for shape perception, object identification and localization, and 2-D layout perception, as well as the applications. Our experiments were conducted with visually blocked

  8. Topographic generalization of tactile perceptual learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrar, Vanessa; Spence, Charles; Makin, Tamar R

    2014-02-01

    Perceptual learning can improve our sensory abilities. Understanding its underlying mechanisms, in particular, when perceptual learning generalizes, has become a focus of research and controversy. Specifically, there is little consensus regarding the extent to which tactile perceptual learning generalizes across fingers. We measured tactile orientation discrimination abilities on 4 fingers (index and middle fingers of both hands), using psychophysical measures, before and after 4 training sessions on 1 finger. Given the somatotopic organization of the hand representation in the somatosensory cortex, the topography of the cortical areas underlying tactile perceptual learning can be inferred from the pattern of generalization across fingers; only fingers sharing cortical representation with the trained finger ought to improve with it. Following training, performance improved not only for the trained finger but also for its adjacent and homologous fingers. Although these fingers were not exposed to training, they nevertheless demonstrated similar levels of learning as the trained finger. Conversely, the performance of the finger that was neither adjacent nor homologous to the trained finger was unaffected by training, despite the fact that our procedure was designed to enhance generalization, as described in recent visual perceptual learning research. This pattern of improved performance is compatible with previous reports of neuronal receptive fields (RFs) in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) spanning adjacent and homologous digits. We conclude that perceptual learning rooted in low-level cortex can still generalize, and suggest potential applications for the neurorehabilitation of syndromes associated with maladaptive plasticity in SI. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  9. Tactile Perception in Adults with Autism: A Multidimensional Psychophysical Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cascio, Carissa; McGlone, Francis; Folger, Stephen; Tannan, Vinay; Baranek, Grace; Pelphrey, Kevin A.; Essick, Gregory

    2008-01-01

    Although sensory problems, including unusual tactile sensitivity, are heavily associated with autism, there is a dearth of rigorous psychophysical research. We compared tactile sensation in adults with autism to controls on the palm and forearm, the latter innervated by low-threshold unmyelinated afferents subserving a social/affiliative…

  10. Tactility and the body in early Chinese medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Elisabeth

    2005-03-01

    If visual inspection of corpses was central to the development of anatomy in modern Europe, one may ask which of the senses was important for the emergence of the predominant currents of scholarly medical knowledge and practice in third- and second-century B.C.E. China? This article argues that it was tactile perception prompted by a tactile exploration of living bodies. The evidence, derived from a close reading of the Mawangdui medical manuscripts, the 105th chapter of the Records of the Historian, and selected passages from the Huang Di's Inner Canon, points to three important trends: first, the tactile exploration of the extremities led to a rich vocabulary of compound words for pain as localized in specific body parts; second, the tactile exploration of the mai gave rise to an even richer vocabulary on qualities of touch in pulse diagnostics; and third, the tactile exploration of the abdomen led to the assessment of the quality of the internal viscera with words that generally were used for describing the tactile quality of skin and flesh. This finding may appear surprising in the light of later developments during the dynastic history of Chinese medicine where tactile exploration of abdomen and extremities would appear unseemly. The author suggests that extensive tactile explorations of the body were possible before Confucius' teachings became a predominant aspect of state ideology.

  11. Integration of auditory and tactile inputs in musical meter perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Juan; Gamble, Darik; Sarnlertsophon, Kristine; Wang, Xiaoqin; Hsiao, Steven

    2013-01-01

    Musicians often say that they not only hear but also "feel" music. To explore the contribution of tactile information to "feeling" music, we investigated the degree that auditory and tactile inputs are integrated in humans performing a musical meter-recognition task. Subjects discriminated between two types of sequences, "duple" (march-like rhythms) and "triple" (waltz-like rhythms), presented in three conditions: (1) unimodal inputs (auditory or tactile alone); (2) various combinations of bimodal inputs, where sequences were distributed between the auditory and tactile channels such that a single channel did not produce coherent meter percepts; and (3) bimodal inputs where the two channels contained congruent or incongruent meter cues. We first show that meter is perceived similarly well (70-85 %) when tactile or auditory cues are presented alone. We next show in the bimodal experiments that auditory and tactile cues are integrated to produce coherent meter percepts. Performance is high (70-90 %) when all of the metrically important notes are assigned to one channel and is reduced to 60 % when half of these notes are assigned to one channel. When the important notes are presented simultaneously to both channels, congruent cues enhance meter recognition (90 %). Performance dropped dramatically when subjects were presented with incongruent auditory cues (10 %), as opposed to incongruent tactile cues (60 %), demonstrating that auditory input dominates meter perception. These observations support the notion that meter perception is a cross-modal percept with tactile inputs underlying the perception of "feeling" music.

  12. Tactile learning in rodents: Neurobiology and neuropharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roohbakhsh, Ali; Shamsizadeh, Ali; Arababadi, Mohammad Kazemi; Ayoobi, Fateme; Fatemi, Iman; Allahtavakoli, Mohammad; Mohammad-Zadeh, Mohammad

    2016-02-15

    Animal models of learning and memory have been the subject of considerable research. Rodents such as mice and rats are nocturnal animals with poor vision, and their survival depends on their sense of touch. Recent reports have shown that whisker somatosensation is the main channel through which rodents collect and process environmental information. This review describes tactile learning in rodents from a neurobiological and neuropharmacological perspective, and how this is involved in memory-related processes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Comparative Evaluation of Tactile Sensation by Electrical and Mechanical Stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yem, Vibol; Kajimoto, Hiroyuki

    2017-01-01

    An electrotactile display is a tactile interface that provides tactile perception by passing electrical current through the surface of the skin. It is actively used instead of mechanical tactile displays for tactile feedback because of several advantages such as its small and thin size, light weight, and high responsiveness. However, the similarities and differences between these sensations is still not clear. This study directly compares the intensity sensation of electrotactile stimulation to that of mechanical stimulation, and investigates the characteristic sensation of anodic and cathodic stimulation. In the experiment, participants underwent a 30 pps electrotactile stimulus every one second to their middle finger, and were asked to match this intensity by adjusting the intensity of a mechanical tactile stimulus to an index finger. The results showed that anodic stimulation mainly produced vibration sensation, whereas cathodic sensation produced both vibration and pressure sensations. Relatively low pressure sensation was also observed for anodic stimulation but it remains low, regardless of the increasing of electrical intensity.

  14. Cognitive and tactile factors affecting human haptic performance in later life.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias Kalisch

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Vision and haptics are the key modalities by which humans perceive objects and interact with their environment in a target-oriented manner. Both modalities share higher-order neural resources and the mechanisms required for object exploration. Compared to vision, the understanding of haptic information processing is still rudimentary. Although it is known that haptic performance, similar to many other skills, decreases in old age, the underlying mechanisms are not clear. It is yet to be determined to what extent this decrease is related to the age-related loss of tactile acuity or cognitive capacity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated the haptic performance of 81 older adults by means of a cross-modal object recognition test. Additionally, we assessed the subjects' tactile acuity with an apparatus-based two-point discrimination paradigm, and their cognitive performance by means of the non-verbal Raven-Standard-Progressive matrices test. As expected, there was a significant age-related decline in performance on all 3 tests. With the exception of tactile acuity, this decline was found to be more distinct in female subjects. Correlation analyses revealed a strong relationship between haptic and cognitive performance for all subjects. Tactile performance, on the contrary, was only significantly correlated with male subjects' haptic performance. CONCLUSIONS: Haptic object recognition is a demanding task in old age, especially when it comes to the exploration of complex, unfamiliar objects. Our data support a disproportionately higher impact of cognition on haptic performance as compared to the impact of tactile acuity. Our findings are in agreement with studies reporting an increase in co-variation between individual sensory performance and general cognitive functioning in old age.

  15. A Portable Piezoelectric Tactile Terminal for Braille Readers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramiro Velázquez

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper introduces a novel concept on reading assistive technologies for the blind: the TactoBook, a system that is able to translate entire electronic books (eBooks to Braille code and to reproduce them in portable electronic Braille terminals. The TactoBook consists of a computer-based translator that converts fast and automatically any eBook into Braille. The Braille version of the eBook is then encrypted as a file and stored in a USB memory drive which is later inserted and reproduced in a compact, lightweight, and highly-portable tactile terminal. In particular, this paper presents a piezoelectric ultrasonic actuation approach to design and implement such portable Braille terminal. Actuating mechanism, design concept, first prototype, and performance results are presented and discussed.

  16. Visual illusion of tool use recalibrates tactile perception

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Luke E.; Longo, Matthew R.; Saygin, Ayse P.

    2018-01-01

    Brief use of a tool recalibrates multisensory representations of the user’s body, a phenomenon called tool embodiment. Despite two decades of research, little is known about its boundary conditions. It has been widely argued that embodiment requires active tool use, suggesting a critical role for somatosensory and motor feedback. The present study used a visual illusion to cast doubt on this view. We used a mirror-based setup to induce a visual experience of tool use with an arm that was in fact stationary. Following illusory tool use, tactile perception was recalibrated on this stationary arm, and with equal magnitude as physical use. Recalibration was not found following illusory passive tool holding, and could not be accounted for by sensory conflict or general interhemispheric plasticity. These results suggest visual tool-use signals play a critical role in driving tool embodiment. PMID:28196765

  17. Tactile Digital Video Globes: a New Way to Outreach Oceanography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poteau, A.; Claustre, H.; Scheurle, C.; Jessin, T.; Fontana, C.

    2016-02-01

    One objective of the "Ocean Autonomous Observation" team of the Laboratory of Oceanography of Villefranche-sur-mer is to develop new means to outreach our science activities to various audiences. Besides the scientific community, this includes students and targets the general public, school pupils, and stakeholders. In this context, we have acquired a digital video globe with tactile capabilities and we will present here the various applications that we have been developing. A first type of products concerns the visualization of oceanic properties (SST, salinity, density, Chla, O2, NO3, irradiance) by diving from the surface (generally from satellite data) into the Ocean interior (through the use of global data bases, Argo, WOA). In second place, specific applications deal with surface animations allowing highlighting the seasonality of some properties (Chla, SST, ice cover, currents; based on satellite as well as modeling outputs). Finally, we show a variety of applications developed using the tactile functionality of the spherical display. In particular real-time vertical profiles acquired by Bio-Argo floats become directly accessible for the entire open ocean. Such a new tool plus its novel applications has been presented to school children, and to the wider public (at the so-called "fête de la science") as well as to potential sponsors of our science-outreach activities. Their feedback has always been highly positive and encouraging in terms of impact. From the scientists point of view, the use of this new support can easily compete with the classical PowerPoint, is much more attractive and fun and undeniably helps to outreach the various aspects of our pluridisciplinary science.

  18. Tactile Experience Shapes Prey-Capture Behavior in Etruscan Shrews

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eBrecht

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available A crucial role of tactile experience for the maturation of neural response properties in the somatosensory system is well established, but little is known about the role of tactile experience in the development of tactile behaviors. Here we study how tactile experience affects prey capture behavior in Etruscan shrews, Suncus etruscus. Prey capture in adult shrews is a high-speed behavior that relies on precise attacks guided by tactile Gestalt cues. We studied the role of tactile experience by three different approaches. First, we analyzed the hunting skills of young shrews right after weaning. We found that prey capture in young animals is most but not all aspects similar to that of adults. Second we performed whisker trimming for three to four weeks after birth. Such deprivation resulted in a lasting disruption of prey capture even after whisker re-growth: attacks lacked precise targeting and had a lower success rate. Third, we presented adult shrews with an entirely novel prey species, the giant cockroach. The shape of this roach is very different from the shrew’s normal (cricket prey and the thorax – the preferred point of attack in crickets – is protected a heavy cuticle. Initially shrews attacked giant roaches the same way they attack crickets and targeted the thoracic region. With progressive experience, however, shrews adopted a new attack strategy targeting legs and underside of the roaches while avoiding other body parts. Speed and efficiency of attacks improved. These data suggest that tactile experience shapes prey capture behavior.

  19. Decoupling Research on Flexible Tactile Sensors Interfered by White Gaussian Noise Using Improved Radical Basis Function Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feilu Wang

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Research on tactile sensors to enhance their flexibility and ability of multi- dimensional information detection is a key issue to develop humanoid robots. In view of that the tactile sensor is often affected by noise, this paper adds different white Gaussian noises (WGN into the ideal model of flexible tactile sensors based on conductive rubber purposely, then improves the standard radial basis function neural network (RNFNN to deal with the noises. The modified RBFNN is applied to approximate and decouple the mapping relationship between row-column resistance with WGNs and three-dimensional deformation. Numerical experiments demonstrate that the decoupling result of the deformation for the sensor is quite good. The results show that the improved RBFNN which doesn’t rely on the mathematical model of the system has good anti-noise ability and robustness.

  20. Preliminary study on piezoresistive and piezoelectric properties of a double-layer soft material for tactile sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan He

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes a double-layer simplified sensor unit based on the interesting electromechanical properties of MWNT mixed by polymer composite and PVDF films, which is envisaged to imitate the distributed tactile receptors of human hands so as to help the disabled to recover the basic tactile perception. This paper shows the fabrication and performance research of such a new piezoelectric-piezoresistive composite material which indicates a promising .application in prosthtic hand.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5755/j01.ms.21.2.6454

  1. Tactile Models and Games as Learning Tools for Topics of Molecular and Cell Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Nelma Regina Segnini Bossolan

    2017-01-01

    The cell structure and the dynamics of its functioning are basic topics for the understanding of phenomena on a larger scale in living organisms and for which research in science teaching has suggested several strategies based on the use of images, games, computational simulations and tactile models, among other types of external representations. Our science education research group, over the last 17 years, has developed and evaluated educational materials for teaching these topics, aimed at ...

  2. Review of Recent Inkjet-Printed Capacitive Tactile Sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Salim

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Inkjet printing is an advanced printing technology that has been used to develop conducting layers, interconnects and other features on a variety of substrates. It is an additive manufacturing process that offers cost-effective, lightweight designs and simplifies the fabrication process with little effort. There is hardly sufficient research on tactile sensors and inkjet printing. Advancements in materials science and inkjet printing greatly facilitate the realization of sophisticated tactile sensors. Starting from the concept of capacitive sensing, a brief comparison of printing techniques, the essential requirements of inkjet-printing and the attractive features of state-of-the art inkjet-printed tactile sensors developed on diverse substrates (paper, polymer, glass and textile are presented in this comprehensive review. Recent trends in inkjet-printed wearable/flexible and foldable tactile sensors are evaluated, paving the way for future research.

  3. Acquisition of a bodily-tactile language as first language

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ask Larsen, Flemming

    2013-01-01

    Language acquisition in the bodily-tactile modality is difficult to understand, describe, and support. This chapter advocates a reinterpretation of the gestural and idiosyncratic bodily-tactile communication of people with congenital deafblindness (CDB) in terms of early language acquisition...... towards Tactile Sign Language (TSL). The access to participation in complex TSL culture is crucial for language acquisition. We already know how to transfer the patterns of social interaction into the bodily-tactile modality. This is the fundation on which to build actual linguistic participation. TSL...... as a first language is presently a theoretic possibility. We need more research on how to accommodate TSL to language Development and on how to fit TSL into participation in complex cultural activities....

  4. Control Framework for Dexterous Manipulation Using Dynamic Visual Servoing and Tactile Sensors’ Feedback

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos A. Jara

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Tactile sensors play an important role in robotics manipulation to perform dexterous and complex tasks. This paper presents a novel control framework to perform dexterous manipulation with multi-fingered robotic hands using feedback data from tactile and visual sensors. This control framework permits the definition of new visual controllers which allow the path tracking of the object motion taking into account both the dynamics model of the robot hand and the grasping force of the fingertips under a hybrid control scheme. In addition, the proposed general method employs optimal control to obtain the desired behaviour in the joint space of the fingers based on an indicated cost function which determines how the control effort is distributed over the joints of the robotic hand. Finally, authors show experimental verifications on a real robotic manipulation system for some of the controllers derived from the control framework.

  5. RETENTION OF HIGH TACTILE ACUITY THROUGHOUT THE LIFESPAN IN BLINDNESS

    OpenAIRE

    Legge, Gordon E.; Madison, Cindee; Vaughn, Brenna N.; Cheong, Allen M.Y.; Miller, Joseph C.

    2008-01-01

    Previous studies of tactile acuity on the fingertip using passive touch have demonstrated an age-related decline in spatial resolution for both sighted and blind subjects. We have re-examined this age dependence with two newly designed tactile-acuity charts requiring active exploration of the test symbols. One chart used dot patterns similar to Braille and the other used embossed Landolt rings. Groups of blind Braille readers and sighted subjects, ranging in age from 12 to 85 years, were test...

  6. Audio-tactile integration and the influence of musical training.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Kuchenbuch

    Full Text Available Perception of our environment is a multisensory experience; information from different sensory systems like the auditory, visual and tactile is constantly integrated. Complex tasks that require high temporal and spatial precision of multisensory integration put strong demands on the underlying networks but it is largely unknown how task experience shapes multisensory processing. Long-term musical training is an excellent model for brain plasticity because it shapes the human brain at functional and structural levels, affecting a network of brain areas. In the present study we used magnetoencephalography (MEG to investigate how audio-tactile perception is integrated in the human brain and if musicians show enhancement of the corresponding activation compared to non-musicians. Using a paradigm that allowed the investigation of combined and separate auditory and tactile processing, we found a multisensory incongruency response, generated in frontal, cingulate and cerebellar regions, an auditory mismatch response generated mainly in the auditory cortex and a tactile mismatch response generated in frontal and cerebellar regions. The influence of musical training was seen in the audio-tactile as well as in the auditory condition, indicating enhanced higher-order processing in musicians, while the sources of the tactile MMN were not influenced by long-term musical training. Consistent with the predictive coding model, more basic, bottom-up sensory processing was relatively stable and less affected by expertise, whereas areas for top-down models of multisensory expectancies were modulated by training.

  7. A Distributed Tactile Sensor for Intuitive Human-Robot Interfacing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Cirillo

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Safety of human-robot physical interaction is enabled not only by suitable robot control strategies but also by suitable sensing technologies. For example, if distributed tactile sensors were available on the robot, they could be used not only to detect unintentional collisions, but also as human-machine interface by enabling a new mode of social interaction with the machine. Starting from their previous works, the authors developed a conformable distributed tactile sensor that can be easily conformed to the different parts of the robot body. Its ability to estimate contact force components and to provide a tactile map with an accurate spatial resolution enables the robot to handle both unintentional collisions in safe human-robot collaboration tasks and intentional touches where the sensor is used as human-machine interface. In this paper, the authors present the characterization of the proposed tactile sensor and they show how it can be also exploited to recognize haptic tactile gestures, by tailoring recognition algorithms, well known in the image processing field, to the case of tactile images. In particular, a set of haptic gestures has been defined to test three recognition algorithms on a group of 20 users. The paper demonstrates how the same sensor originally designed to manage unintentional collisions can be successfully used also as human-machine interface.

  8. Audio-tactile integration and the influence of musical training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuchenbuch, Anja; Paraskevopoulos, Evangelos; Herholz, Sibylle C; Pantev, Christo

    2014-01-01

    Perception of our environment is a multisensory experience; information from different sensory systems like the auditory, visual and tactile is constantly integrated. Complex tasks that require high temporal and spatial precision of multisensory integration put strong demands on the underlying networks but it is largely unknown how task experience shapes multisensory processing. Long-term musical training is an excellent model for brain plasticity because it shapes the human brain at functional and structural levels, affecting a network of brain areas. In the present study we used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate how audio-tactile perception is integrated in the human brain and if musicians show enhancement of the corresponding activation compared to non-musicians. Using a paradigm that allowed the investigation of combined and separate auditory and tactile processing, we found a multisensory incongruency response, generated in frontal, cingulate and cerebellar regions, an auditory mismatch response generated mainly in the auditory cortex and a tactile mismatch response generated in frontal and cerebellar regions. The influence of musical training was seen in the audio-tactile as well as in the auditory condition, indicating enhanced higher-order processing in musicians, while the sources of the tactile MMN were not influenced by long-term musical training. Consistent with the predictive coding model, more basic, bottom-up sensory processing was relatively stable and less affected by expertise, whereas areas for top-down models of multisensory expectancies were modulated by training.

  9. The Importance of Visual Experience, Gender, and Emotion in the Assessment of an Assistive Tactile Mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brayda, Luca; Campus, Claudio; Memeo, Mariacarla; Lucagrossi, Laura

    2015-01-01

    Tactile maps are efficient tools to improve spatial understanding and mobility skills of visually impaired people. Their limited adaptability can be compensated with haptic devices which display graphical information, but their assessment is frequently limited to performance-based metrics only which can hide potential spatial abilities in O&M protocols. We assess a low-tech tactile mouse able to deliver three-dimensional content considering how performance, mental workload, behavior, and anxiety status vary with task difficulty and gender in congenitally blind, late blind, and sighted subjects. Results show that task difficulty coherently modulates the efficiency and difficulty to build mental maps, regardless of visual experience. Although exhibiting attitudes that were similar and gender-independent, the females had lower performance and higher cognitive load, especially when congenitally blind. All groups showed a significant decrease in anxiety after using the device. Tactile graphics with our device seems therefore to be applicable with different visual experiences, with no negative emotional consequences of mentally demanding spatial tasks. Going beyond performance-based assessment, our methodology can help with better targeting technological solutions in orientation and mobility protocols.

  10. Design and Evaluation of a Thermal Tactile Display for Colour Rendering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhen Jia

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a novel method of manipulating both thermal change rate and thermal intensity to convey colour information by using a thermal tactile display. The colour-space transformation from {red, green, blue} to {hue, saturation, intensity} is introduced, and the mapping between colour and temperature is established based on warm and cold colours. Considering the lower resolution of the tactile channel, six limited stimulation levels are generated to represent colours. Based on the semi-infinite body model, the thermal response within the skin for each stimulation form is investigated. The Peltier element of the display is designed to convey different thermal stimuli to the human finger. Two experiments are performed to evaluate the performance of the display: colour identification and discrimination. Experimental results indicate that there is a response bias among the perceived colours for the traditional method of only employing thermal intensity, but there is no response bias for the proposed method; subjects’ mean recognition accuracy with the proposed method is significantly higher than that gained using the traditional method. Furthermore, colour information of the captured images can be reliably discriminated by using this devised thermal tactile display.

  11. Enhancing Perception with Tactile Object Recognition in Adaptive Grippers for Human–Robot Interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan M. Gandarias

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The use of tactile perception can help first response robotic teams in disaster scenarios, where visibility conditions are often reduced due to the presence of dust, mud, or smoke, distinguishing human limbs from other objects with similar shapes. Here, the integration of the tactile sensor in adaptive grippers is evaluated, measuring the performance of an object recognition task based on deep convolutional neural networks (DCNNs using a flexible sensor mounted in adaptive grippers. A total of 15 classes with 50 tactile images each were trained, including human body parts and common environment objects, in semi-rigid and flexible adaptive grippers based on the fin ray effect. The classifier was compared against the rigid configuration and a support vector machine classifier (SVM. Finally, a two-level output network has been proposed to provide both object-type recognition and human/non-human classification. Sensors in adaptive grippers have a higher number of non-null tactels (up to 37% more, with a lower mean of pressure values (up to 72% less than when using a rigid sensor, with a softer grip, which is needed in physical human–robot interaction (pHRI. A semi-rigid implementation with 95.13% object recognition rate was chosen, even though the human/non-human classification had better results (98.78% with a rigid sensor.

  12. Enhancing Perception with Tactile Object Recognition in Adaptive Grippers for Human-Robot Interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandarias, Juan M; Gómez-de-Gabriel, Jesús M; García-Cerezo, Alfonso J

    2018-02-26

    The use of tactile perception can help first response robotic teams in disaster scenarios, where visibility conditions are often reduced due to the presence of dust, mud, or smoke, distinguishing human limbs from other objects with similar shapes. Here, the integration of the tactile sensor in adaptive grippers is evaluated, measuring the performance of an object recognition task based on deep convolutional neural networks (DCNNs) using a flexible sensor mounted in adaptive grippers. A total of 15 classes with 50 tactile images each were trained, including human body parts and common environment objects, in semi-rigid and flexible adaptive grippers based on the fin ray effect. The classifier was compared against the rigid configuration and a support vector machine classifier (SVM). Finally, a two-level output network has been proposed to provide both object-type recognition and human/non-human classification. Sensors in adaptive grippers have a higher number of non-null tactels (up to 37% more), with a lower mean of pressure values (up to 72% less) than when using a rigid sensor, with a softer grip, which is needed in physical human-robot interaction (pHRI). A semi-rigid implementation with 95.13% object recognition rate was chosen, even though the human/non-human classification had better results (98.78%) with a rigid sensor.

  13. Tactile spatial working memory activates the dorsal extrastriate cortical pathway in congenitally blind individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonino, D; Ricciardi, E; Sani, L; Gentili, C; Vanello, N; Guazzelli, M; Vecchi, T; Pietrini, P

    2008-09-01

    In sighted individuals, both the visual and tactile version of the same spatial working memory task elicited neural responses in the dorsal "where" cortical pathway (Ricciardi et al., 2006). Whether the neural response during the tactile working memory task is due to visually-based spatial imagery or rather reflects a more abstract, supramodal organization of the dorsal cortical pathway remains to be determined. To understand the role of visual experience on the functional organization of the dorsal cortical stream, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) here we examined brain response in four individuals with congenital or early blindness and no visual recollection, while they performed the same tactile spatial working memory task, a one-back recognition of 2D and 3D matrices. The blind subjects showed a significant activation in bilateral posterior parietal cortex, dorsolateral and inferior prefrontal areas, precuneus, lateral occipital cortex, and cerebellum. Thus, dorsal occipito-parietal areas are involved in mental imagery dealing with spatial components in subjects without prior visual experience and in response to a non-visual task. These data indicate that recruitment of the dorsal cortical pathway in response to the tactile spatial working memory task is not mediated by visually-based imagery and that visual experience is not a prerequisite for the development of a more abstract functional organization of the dorsal stream. These findings, along with previous data indicating a similar supramodal functional organization within the ventral cortical pathway and the motion processing brain regions, may contribute to explain how individuals who are born deprived of sight are able to interact effectively with the surrounding world.

  14. Cross-sensory facilitation reveals neural interactions between visual and tactile motion in humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica eGori

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Many recent studies show that the human brain integrates information across the different senses and that stimuli of one sensory modality can enhance the perception of other modalities. Here we study the processes that mediate cross-modal facilitation and summation between visual and tactile motion. We find that while summation produced a generic, non-specific improvement of thresholds, probably reflecting higher-order interaction of decision signals, facilitation reveals a strong, direction-specific interaction, which we believe reflects sensory interactions. We measured visual and tactile velocity discrimination thresholds over a wide range of base velocities and conditions. Thresholds for both visual and tactile stimuli showed the characteristic dipper function, with the minimum thresholds occurring at a given pedestal speed. When visual and tactile coherent stimuli were combined (summation condition the thresholds for these multi-sensory stimuli also showed a dipper function with the minimum thresholds occurring in a similar range to that for unisensory signals. However, the improvement of multisensory thresholds was weak and not directionally specific, well predicted by the maximum likelihood estimation model (agreeing with previous research. A different technique (facilitation did, however, reveal direction-specific enhancement. Adding a non-informative pedestal motion stimulus in one sensory modality (vision or touch selectively lowered thresholds in the other, by the same amount as pedestals in the same modality. Facilitation did not occur for neutral stimuli like sounds (that would also have reduced temporal uncertainty, nor for motion in opposite direction, even in blocked trials where the subjects knew that the motion was in the opposite direction showing that the facilitation was not under subject control. Cross-sensory facilitation is strong evidence for functionally relevant cross-sensory integration at early levels of sensory

  15. Tactile Models and Games as Learning Tools for Topics of Molecular and Cell Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelma Regina Segnini Bossolan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The cell structure and the dynamics of its functioning are basic topics for the understanding of phenomena on a larger scale in living organisms and for which research in science teaching has suggested several strategies based on the use of images, games, computational simulations and tactile models, among other types of external representations. Our science education research group, over the last 17 years, has developed and evaluated educational materials for teaching these topics, aimed at all levels of school. Among these materials, we highlight the tactile models for the assembly of nucleic acid, amino acids and proteins molecules, as well as a board game that deals with the process of protein synthesis. These materials were evaluated with students from the final grades of elementary and high school, in the context of the Natural Sciences Curriculum of the State of São Paulo, as well as students from two higher level courses, one of them Licentiate’s program in Exact Sciences. Activities were planned with a problem-solving approach and carried out in small groups. Tactile models of nucleic acid aided elementary students in understanding the role of these molecules in the transmission of hereditary traits. The game of protein synthesis, which depicts this process in a schematic eukaryotic cell where the participants aim to synthesize a particular protein, promoted the development of skills such as “decision making” and “making anticipations” among high school students, in addition of expanding their knowledge about the biological functions of these molecules. The tactile models of amino acids and proteins used by students of higher education promoted their spatial perception of these molecules, allowing the prediction of intra- and intermolecular interactions. It is important to emphasize the importance of these educational resources in the construction of more functional mental models of cells and of intracellular processes.

  16. Single-Grasp Object Classification and Feature Extraction with Simple Robot Hands and Tactile Sensors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spiers, Adam J; Liarokapis, Minas V; Calli, Berk; Dollar, Aaron M

    2016-01-01

    Classical robotic approaches to tactile object identification often involve rigid mechanical grippers, dense sensor arrays, and exploratory procedures (EPs). Though EPs are a natural method for humans to acquire object information, evidence also exists for meaningful tactile property inference from brief, non-exploratory motions (a 'haptic glance'). In this work, we implement tactile object identification and feature extraction techniques on data acquired during a single, unplanned grasp with a simple, underactuated robot hand equipped with inexpensive barometric pressure sensors. Our methodology utilizes two cooperating schemes based on an advanced machine learning technique (random forests) and parametric methods that estimate object properties. The available data is limited to actuator positions (one per two link finger) and force sensors values (eight per finger). The schemes are able to work both independently and collaboratively, depending on the task scenario. When collaborating, the results of each method contribute to the other, improving the overall result in a synergistic fashion. Unlike prior work, the proposed approach does not require object exploration, re-grasping, grasp-release, or force modulation and works for arbitrary object start positions and orientations. Due to these factors, the technique may be integrated into practical robotic grasping scenarios without adding time or manipulation overheads.

  17. Tactile communication using a CO(2) flux stimulation for blind or deafblind people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Cunha, Jose Carlos; Bordignon, Luiz Alberto; Nohama, Percy

    2010-01-01

    This paper describes a tactile stimulation system for producing nonvisual image patterns to blind or deafblind people. The stimulator yields a CO(2) pulsatile flux directed to the user's skin throughout a needle that is coupled to a 2-D tactile plotter. The fluxtactile plotter operates with two step motor mounted on a wood structure, controlled by a program developed to produce alphanumerical characters and geometric figures of different size and speed, which will be used to investigate the psychophysical properties of this kind of tactile communication. CO(2) is provided by a cylinder that delivers a stable flux, which is converted to a pulsatile mode through a high frequency solenoid valve that can chop it up to 1 kHz. Also, system temperature is controlled by a Peltier based device. Tests on the prototype indicate that the system is a valuable tool to investigate the psychophysical properties of the skin in response to stimulation by CO(2) jet, allowing a quantitative and qualitative analysis as a function of stimulation parameters. With the system developed, it was possible to plot the geometric figures proposed: triangles, rectangles and octagons, in different sizes and speeds, and verify the control of the frequency of CO(2) jet stimuli.

  18. Development of patterned carbon nanotubes on a 3D polymer substrate for the flexible tactile sensor application

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hu, Chih-Fan; Fang, Weileun; Su, Wang-Shen

    2011-01-01

    This study reports an improved approach to implement a carbon nanotube (CNT)-based flexible tactile sensor, which is integrated with a flexible print circuit (FPC) connector and is capable of detecting normal and shear forces. The merits of the presented tactile sensor by the integration process are as follows: (1) 3D polymer tactile bump structures are naturally formed by the use of an anisotropically etched silicon mold; (2) planar and 3D distributed CNTs are adopted as piezoresistive sensing elements to enable the detection of shear and normal forces; (3) the processes of patterning CNTs and metal routing can be easily batch fabricated on rigid silicon instead of flexible polymer; (4) robust electrical routing is realized using parylene encapsulation to avoid delamination; (5) patterned CNTs, electrical routing and FPC connector are integrated and transferred to a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) substrate by a molding process. In application, the CNT-based flexible tactile sensor and its integration with the FPC connector are implemented. Preliminary tests show the feasibility of detecting both normal and shear forces using the presented flexible sensor.

  19. Braille in the Sighted: Teaching Tactile Reading to Sighted Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bola, Łukasz; Siuda-Krzywicka, Katarzyna; Paplińska, Małgorzata; Sumera, Ewa; Hańczur, Paweł; Szwed, Marcin

    2016-01-01

    Blind people are known to have superior perceptual abilities in their remaining senses. Several studies suggest that these enhancements are dependent on the specific experience of blind individuals, who use those remaining senses more than sighted subjects. In line with this view, sighted subjects, when trained, are able to significantly progress in relatively simple tactile tasks. However, the case of complex tactile tasks is less obvious, as some studies suggest that visual deprivation itself could confer large advantages in learning them. It remains unclear to what extent those complex skills, such as braille reading, can be learnt by sighted subjects. Here we enrolled twenty-nine sighted adults, mostly braille teachers and educators, in a 9-month braille reading course. At the beginning of the course, all subjects were naive in tactile braille reading. After the course, almost all were able to read whole braille words at a mean speed of 6 words-per-minute. Subjects with low tactile acuity did not differ significantly in braille reading speed from the rest of the group, indicating that low tactile acuity is not a limiting factor for learning braille, at least at this early stage of learning. Our study shows that most sighted adults can learn whole-word braille reading, given the right method and a considerable amount of motivation. The adult sensorimotor system can thus adapt, to some level, to very complex tactile tasks without visual deprivation. The pace of learning in our group was comparable to congenitally and early blind children learning braille in primary school, which suggests that the blind's mastery of complex tactile tasks can, to a large extent, be explained by experience-dependent mechanisms.

  20. Displaying Sensed Tactile Cues with a Fingertip Haptic Device.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacchierotti, Claudio; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Kuchenbecker, Katherine J

    2015-01-01

    Telerobotic systems enable humans to explore and manipulate remote environments for applications such as surgery and disaster response, but few such systems provide the operator with cutaneous feedback. This article presents a novel approach to remote cutaneous interaction; our method is compatible with any fingertip tactile sensor and any mechanical tactile display device, and it does not require a position/force or skin deformation model. Instead, it directly maps the sensed stimuli to the best possible input commands for the device's motors using a data set recorded with the tactile sensor inside the device. As a proof of concept, we considered a haptic system composed of a BioTac tactile sensor, in charge of measuring contact deformations, and a custom 3-DoF cutaneous device with a flat contact platform, in charge of applying deformations to the user's fingertip. To validate the proposed approach and discover its inherent tradeoffs, we carried out two remote tactile interaction experiments. The first one evaluated the error between the tactile sensations registered by the BioTac in a remote environment and the sensations created by the cutaneous device for six representative tactile interactions and 27 variations of the display algorithm. The normalized average errors in the best condition were 3.0 percent of the BioTac's full 12-bit scale. The second experiment evaluated human subjects' experiences for the same six remote interactions and eight algorithm variations. The average subjective rating for the best algorithm variation was 8.2 out of 10, where 10 is best.

  1. Tactile Radar: experimenting a computer game with visually disabled.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kastrup, Virgínia; Cassinelli, Alvaro; Quérette, Paulo; Bergstrom, Niklas; Sampaio, Eliana

    2017-09-18

    Visually disabled people increasingly use computers in everyday life, thanks to novel assistive technologies better tailored to their cognitive functioning. Like sighted people, many are interested in computer games - videogames and audio-games. Tactile-games are beginning to emerge. The Tactile Radar is a device through which a visually disabled person is able to detect distal obstacles. In this study, it is connected to a computer running a tactile-game. The game consists in finding and collecting randomly arranged coins in a virtual room. The study was conducted with nine congenital blind people including both sexes, aged 20-64 years old. Complementary methods of first and third person were used: the debriefing interview and the quasi-experimental design. The results indicate that the Tactile Radar is suitable for the creation of computer games specifically tailored for visually disabled people. Furthermore, the device seems capable of eliciting a powerful immersive experience. Methodologically speaking, this research contributes to the consolidation and development of first and third person complementary methods, particularly useful in disabled people research field, including the evaluation by users of the Tactile Radar effectiveness in a virtual reality context. Implications for rehabilitation Despite the growing interest in virtual games for visually disabled people, they still find barriers to access such games. Through the development of assistive technologies such as the Tactile Radar, applied in virtual games, we can create new opportunities for leisure, socialization and education for visually disabled people. The results of our study indicate that the Tactile Radar is adapted to the creation of video games for visually disabled people, providing a playful interaction with the players.

  2. Stimulus-dependent effects on tactile spatial acuity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tommerdahl M

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Previous studies have shown that spatio-tactile acuity is influenced by the clarity of the cortical response in primary somatosensory cortex (SI. Stimulus characteristics such as frequency, amplitude, and location of tactile stimuli presented to the skin have been shown to have a significant effect on the response in SI. The present study observes the effect of changing stimulus parameters of 25 Hz sinusoidal vertical skin displacement stimulation ("flutter" on a human subject's ability to discriminate between two adjacent or near-adjacent skin sites. Based on results obtained from recent neurophysiological studies of the SI response to different conditions of vibrotactile stimulation, we predicted that the addition of 200 Hz vibration to the same site that a two-point flutter stimulus was delivered on the skin would improve a subject's spatio-tactile acuity over that measured with flutter alone. Additionally, similar neurophysiological studies predict that the presence of either a 25 Hz flutter or 200 Hz vibration stimulus on the unattended hand (on the opposite side of the body from the site of two-point limen testing – the condition of bilateral stimulation – which has been shown to evoke less SI cortical activity than the contralateral-only stimulus condition would decrease a subject's ability to discriminate between two points on the skin. Results A Bekesy tracking method was employed to track a subject's ability to discriminate between two-point stimuli delivered to the skin. The distance between the two points of stimulation was varied on a trial-by-trial basis, and several different stimulus conditions were examined: (1 The "control" condition, in which 25 Hz flutter stimuli were delivered simultaneously to the two points on the skin of the attended hand, (2 the "complex" condition, in which a combination of 25 Hz flutter and 200 Hz vibration stimuli were delivered to the two points on the attended hand, and (3 a

  3. Object Recognition and Localization: The Role of Tactile Sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Achint Aggarwal

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Tactile sensors, because of their intrinsic insensitivity to lighting conditions and water turbidity, provide promising opportunities for augmenting the capabilities of vision sensors in applications involving object recognition and localization. This paper presents two approaches for haptic object recognition and localization for ground and underwater environments. The first approach called Batch Ransac and Iterative Closest Point augmented Particle Filter (BRICPPF is based on an innovative combination of particle filters, Iterative-Closest-Point algorithm, and a feature-based Random Sampling and Consensus (RANSAC algorithm for database matching. It can handle a large database of 3D-objects of complex shapes and performs a complete six-degree-of-freedom localization of static objects. The algorithms are validated by experimentation in ground and underwater environments using real hardware. To our knowledge this is the first instance of haptic object recognition and localization in underwater environments. The second approach is biologically inspired, and provides a close integration between exploration and recognition. An edge following exploration strategy is developed that receives feedback from the current state of recognition. A recognition by parts approach is developed which uses the BRICPPF for object sub-part recognition. Object exploration is either directed to explore a part until it is successfully recognized, or is directed towards new parts to endorse the current recognition belief. This approach is validated by simulation experiments.

  4. Synthetic and Bio-Artificial Tactile Sensing: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Chiara Carrozza

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper reviews the state of the art of artificial tactile sensing, with a particular focus on bio-hybrid and fully-biological approaches. To this aim, the study of physiology of the human sense of touch and of the coding mechanisms of tactile information is a significant starting point, which is briefly explored in this review. Then, the progress towards the development of an artificial sense of touch are investigated. Artificial tactile sensing is analysed with respect to the possible approaches to fabricate the outer interface layer: synthetic skin versus bio-artificial skin. With particular respect to the synthetic skin approach, a brief overview is provided on various technologies and transduction principles that can be integrated beneath the skin layer. Then, the main focus moves to approaches characterized by the use of bio-artificial skin as an outer layer of the artificial sensory system. Within this design solution for the skin, bio-hybrid and fully-biological tactile sensing systems are thoroughly presented: while significant results have been reported for the development of tissue engineered skins, the development of mechanotransduction units and their integration is a recent trend that is still lagging behind, therefore requiring research efforts and investments. In the last part of the paper, application domains and perspectives of the reviewed tactile sensing technologies are discussed.

  5. Tactile mouse generating velvet hand illusion on human palm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadar Rajaei

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available To enhance virtual reality (VR generated by tactile displays, we have focused on a novel tactile illusion, called the Velvet Hand Illusion (VHI. In VHI, moving two parallel wires back and forth between the two hands leads humans to perceive a velvet-like surface between their hands. In earlier studies, we revealed that the intensity of VHI could be controlled by a ratio (r/D, where r and D are the wire stroke and wire distance, respectively. According to these findings, we investigate in this study whether a common tactile display is able to produce VHI, and whether the ratio can also control VHI intensity. We prepare a dot-matrix display as a tactile display in which moving one line of the display’s pins is considered as a wire pattern. We investigate the VHI intensity with regard to changing the stroke r and the line distance D using paired comparison. Experimental results show that the VHI intensity is increased or decreased by changing r and D. We conclude that VHI can be created by the tactile display, and the intensity of VHI is controlled by changing the ratio of r/D.

  6. The phase of prestimulus alpha oscillations affects tactile perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ai, Lei; Ro, Tony

    2014-03-01

    Previous studies have shown that neural oscillations in the 8- to 12-Hz range influence sensory perception. In the current study, we examined whether both the power and phase of these mu/alpha oscillations predict successful conscious tactile perception. Near-threshold tactile stimuli were applied to the left hand while electroencephalographic (EEG) activity was recorded over the contralateral right somatosensory cortex. We found a significant inverted U-shaped relationship between prestimulus mu/alpha power and detection rate, suggesting that there is an intermediate level of alpha power that is optimal for tactile perception. We also found a significant difference in phase angle concentration at stimulus onset that predicted whether the upcoming tactile stimulus was perceived or missed. As has been shown in the visual system, these findings suggest that these mu/alpha oscillations measured over somatosensory areas exert a strong inhibitory control on tactile perception and that pulsed inhibition by these oscillations shapes the state of brain activity necessary for conscious perception. They further suggest that these common phasic processing mechanisms across different sensory modalities and brain regions may reflect a common underlying encoding principle in perceptual processing that leads to momentary windows of perceptual awareness.

  7. EAP application to artificial tactile feel display of virtual reality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konyo, Masashi; Tadokoro, Satoshi; Takamori, Toshi; Oguro, Keisuke

    2001-07-01

    A tactile feel display device for virtual reality was developed using Nafion-Platinum composite type EAP actuator (known as IPMC or ICPF). Conventional tactile displays can hardly express tactile human feeling of the fine touch of the surface of a cloth, because their mechanisms cannot excite minute distributed stimuli on human skin. We propose a new ciliary device using ICPF actuators. The ICPF has sufficient softness, utilizing the passive material property, that complex control is not required. The low drive voltage is safe enough for the touch of fingers. Its simple operation mechanism allows miniaturization for practical equipments. The developed device was designed with a number of cilia consisting of ICPF actuators, where a cilium is 2 mm wide and 5 mm long. An ICPF membrane is cut into pectination, and only the cilium part is plated and has a function of an actuator. An inclined configuration of the cilia produces variety of stimuli to human skin controlling frequencies. We tried to display both pressure and vibration at the same time using modulated low and high frequencies. The result clearly shows that over 80% of the subjects sensed some special tactile feeling. A comparison with real material samples shows that this display can present a subtle distinction of tactile feeling of cloth, especially like a towel and denim.

  8. A Tactile Sensor Network System Using a Multiple Sensor Platform with a Dedicated CMOS-LSI for Robot Applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Chenzhong; Tanaka, Shuji; Nakayama, Takahiro; Hata, Yoshiyuki; Bartley, Travis; Nonomura, Yutaka; Muroyama, Masanori

    2017-08-28

    Robot tactile sensation can enhance human-robot communication in terms of safety, reliability and accuracy. The final goal of our project is to widely cover a robot body with a large number of tactile sensors, which has significant advantages such as accurate object recognition, high sensitivity and high redundancy. In this study, we developed a multi-sensor system with dedicated Complementary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor (CMOS) Large-Scale Integration (LSI) circuit chips (referred to as "sensor platform LSI") as a framework of a serial bus-based tactile sensor network system. The sensor platform LSI supports three types of sensors: an on-chip temperature sensor, off-chip capacitive and resistive tactile sensors, and communicates with a relay node via a bus line. The multi-sensor system was first constructed on a printed circuit board to evaluate basic functions of the sensor platform LSI, such as capacitance-to-digital and resistance-to-digital conversion. Then, two kinds of external sensors, nine sensors in total, were connected to two sensor platform LSIs, and temperature, capacitive and resistive sensing data were acquired simultaneously. Moreover, we fabricated flexible printed circuit cables to demonstrate the multi-sensor system with 15 sensor platform LSIs operating simultaneously, which showed a more realistic implementation in robots. In conclusion, the multi-sensor system with up to 15 sensor platform LSIs on a bus line supporting temperature, capacitive and resistive sensing was successfully demonstrated.

  9. A Tactile Sensor Network System Using a Multiple Sensor Platform with a Dedicated CMOS-LSI for Robot Applications †

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Chenzhong; Tanaka, Shuji; Nakayama, Takahiro; Hata, Yoshiyuki; Bartley, Travis; Muroyama, Masanori

    2017-01-01

    Robot tactile sensation can enhance human–robot communication in terms of safety, reliability and accuracy. The final goal of our project is to widely cover a robot body with a large number of tactile sensors, which has significant advantages such as accurate object recognition, high sensitivity and high redundancy. In this study, we developed a multi-sensor system with dedicated Complementary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor (CMOS) Large-Scale Integration (LSI) circuit chips (referred to as “sensor platform LSI”) as a framework of a serial bus-based tactile sensor network system. The sensor platform LSI supports three types of sensors: an on-chip temperature sensor, off-chip capacitive and resistive tactile sensors, and communicates with a relay node via a bus line. The multi-sensor system was first constructed on a printed circuit board to evaluate basic functions of the sensor platform LSI, such as capacitance-to-digital and resistance-to-digital conversion. Then, two kinds of external sensors, nine sensors in total, were connected to two sensor platform LSIs, and temperature, capacitive and resistive sensing data were acquired simultaneously. Moreover, we fabricated flexible printed circuit cables to demonstrate the multi-sensor system with 15 sensor platform LSIs operating simultaneously, which showed a more realistic implementation in robots. In conclusion, the multi-sensor system with up to 15 sensor platform LSIs on a bus line supporting temperature, capacitive and resistive sensing was successfully demonstrated. PMID:29061954

  10. Direct tactile manipulation of the flight plan in a modern aircraft cockpit

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alapetite, Alexandre; Fogh, Rune; Zammit-Mangion, David

    2012-01-01

    An original experimental approach has been chosen, with an incremental progression from a traditional physical cockpit, to a tactile flight simulator reproducing traditional controls, to a prototype navigation display with direct tactile functionality, first located in the traditional low position...

  11. Mutual capacitance of liquid conductors in deformable tactile sensing arrays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Bin [Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (United States); Fontecchio, Adam K. [Electrical and Computer Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering Departments, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104 (United States); Visell, Yon [Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Media Arts and Technology, California NanoSystems Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara, California 93106 (United States)

    2016-01-04

    Advances in highly deformable electronics are needed in order to enable emerging categories of soft computing devices ranging from wearable electronics, to medical devices, and soft robotic components. The combination of highly elastic substrates with intrinsically stretchable conductors holds the promise of enabling electronic sensors that can conform to curved objects, reconfigurable displays, or soft biological tissues, including the skin. Here, we contribute sensing principles for tactile (mechanical image) sensors based on very low modulus polymer substrates with embedded liquid metal microfluidic arrays. The sensors are fabricated using a single-step casting method that utilizes fine nylon filaments to produce arrays of cylindrical channels on two layers. The liquid metal (gallium indium alloy) conductors that fill these channels readily adopt the shape of the embedding membrane, yielding levels of deformability greater than 400%, due to the use of soft polymer substrates. We modeled the sensor performance using electrostatic theory and continuum mechanics, yielding excellent agreement with experiments. Using a matrix-addressed capacitance measurement technique, we are able to resolve strain distributions with millimeter resolution over areas of several square centimeters.

  12. Tactile Sensing for Dexterous Robotic Hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Toby B.

    2000-01-01

    Robotic systems will be used as precursors to human exploration to explore the solar system and expand our knowledge of planetary surfaces. Robotic systems will also be used to build habitats and infrastructure required for human presence in space and on other planetary surfaces . Such robots will require a high level of intelligence and automation. The ability to flexibly manipulate their physical environment is one characteristic that makes humans so effective at these building and exploring tasks . The development of a generic autonomous grasp ing capability will greatly enhance the efficiency and ability of robotics to build, maintain and explore. To tele-operate a robot over vast distances of space, with long communication delays, has proven to be troublesome. Having an autonomous grasping capability that can react in real-time to disturbances or adapt to generic objects, without operator intervention, will reduce the probability of mishandled tools and samples and reduce the number of re-grasp attempts due to dropping. One aspect that separates humans from machines is a rich sensor set. We have the ability to feel objects and respond to forces and textures. The development of touch or tactile sensors for use on a robot that emulates human skin and nerves is the basis for this discussion. We will discuss the use of new piezo-electric and resistive materials that have emerged on the market with the intention of developing a touch sensitive sensor. With viable tacti le sensors we will be one step closer to developing an autonomous grasping capability.

  13. Tactile sensitivity of gloved hands in the cold operation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geng, Q; Kuklane, K; Holmér, I

    1997-11-01

    In this study, tactile sensitivity of gloved hand in the cold operation has been investigated. The relations among physical properties of protective gloves and hand tactile sensitivity and cold protection were also analysed both objectively and subjectively. Subjects with various gloves participated in the experimental study during cold exposure at different ambient temperatures of -12 degrees C and -25 degrees C. Tactual performance was measured using an identification task with various sizes of objects over the percentage of misjudgment. Forearm, hand and finger skin temperatures were also recorded throughout. The experimental data were analysed using analysis of variance (ANOVA) model and the Tukey's multiple range test. The results obtained indicated that the tactual performance was affected both by gloves and by hands/fingers cooling. Effect of object size on the tactile discrimination was significant and the misjudgment increased when similar sizes of objects were identified, especially at -25 degrees C.

  14. Tactile display for virtual 3D shape rendering

    CERN Document Server

    Mansutti, Alessandro; Bordegoni, Monica; Cugini, Umberto

    2017-01-01

    This book describes a novel system for the simultaneous visual and tactile rendering of product shapes which allows designers to simultaneously touch and see new product shapes during the conceptual phase of product development. This system offers important advantages, including potential cost and time savings, compared with the standard product design process in which digital 3D models and physical prototypes are often repeatedly modified until an optimal design is achieved. The system consists of a tactile display that is able to represent, within a real environment, the shape of a product. Designers can explore the rendered surface by touching curves lying on the product shape, selecting those curves that can be considered style features and evaluating their aesthetic quality. In order to physically represent these selected curves, a flexible surface is modeled by means of servo-actuated modules controlling a physical deforming strip. The tactile display is designed so as to be portable, low cost, modular,...

  15. Establishing Auditory-Tactile-Visual Equivalence Classes in Children with Autism and Developmental Delays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mullen, Stuart; Dixon, Mark R.; Belisle, Jordan; Stanley, Caleb

    2017-01-01

    The current study sought to evaluate the efficacy of a stimulus equivalence training procedure in establishing auditory-tactile-visual stimulus classes with 2 children with autism and developmental delays. Participants were exposed to vocal-tactile (A-B) and tactile-picture (B-C) conditional discrimination training and were tested for the…

  16. Tactile acuity charts: a reliable measure of spatial acuity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Bruns

    Full Text Available For assessing tactile spatial resolution it has recently been recommended to use tactile acuity charts which follow the design principles of the Snellen letter charts for visual acuity and involve active touch. However, it is currently unknown whether acuity thresholds obtained with this newly developed psychophysical procedure are in accordance with established measures of tactile acuity that involve passive contact with fixed duration and control of contact force. Here we directly compared tactile acuity thresholds obtained with the acuity charts to traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds in a group of young healthy adults. For this purpose, two types of charts, using either Braille-like dot patterns or embossed Landolt rings with different orientations, were adapted from previous studies. Measurements with the two types of charts were equivalent, but generally more reliable with the dot pattern chart. A comparison with the two-point and grating orientation task data showed that the test-retest reliability of the acuity chart measurements after one week was superior to that of the passive methods. Individual thresholds obtained with the acuity charts agreed reasonably with the grating orientation threshold, but less so with the two-point threshold that yielded relatively distinct acuity estimates compared to the other methods. This potentially considerable amount of mismatch between different measures of tactile acuity suggests that tactile spatial resolution is a complex entity that should ideally be measured with different methods in parallel. The simple test procedure and high reliability of the acuity charts makes them a promising complement and alternative to the traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds.

  17. Tactile acuity charts: a reliable measure of spatial acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruns, Patrick; Camargo, Carlos J; Campanella, Humberto; Esteve, Jaume; Dinse, Hubert R; Röder, Brigitte

    2014-01-01

    For assessing tactile spatial resolution it has recently been recommended to use tactile acuity charts which follow the design principles of the Snellen letter charts for visual acuity and involve active touch. However, it is currently unknown whether acuity thresholds obtained with this newly developed psychophysical procedure are in accordance with established measures of tactile acuity that involve passive contact with fixed duration and control of contact force. Here we directly compared tactile acuity thresholds obtained with the acuity charts to traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds in a group of young healthy adults. For this purpose, two types of charts, using either Braille-like dot patterns or embossed Landolt rings with different orientations, were adapted from previous studies. Measurements with the two types of charts were equivalent, but generally more reliable with the dot pattern chart. A comparison with the two-point and grating orientation task data showed that the test-retest reliability of the acuity chart measurements after one week was superior to that of the passive methods. Individual thresholds obtained with the acuity charts agreed reasonably with the grating orientation threshold, but less so with the two-point threshold that yielded relatively distinct acuity estimates compared to the other methods. This potentially considerable amount of mismatch between different measures of tactile acuity suggests that tactile spatial resolution is a complex entity that should ideally be measured with different methods in parallel. The simple test procedure and high reliability of the acuity charts makes them a promising complement and alternative to the traditional two-point and grating orientation thresholds.

  18. Left hand tactile agnosia after posterior callosal lesion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balsamo, Maddalena; Trojano, Luigi; Giamundo, Arcangelo; Grossi, Dario

    2008-09-01

    We report a patient with a hemorrhagic lesion encroaching upon the posterior third of the corpus callosum but sparing the splenium. She showed marked difficulties in recognizing objects and shapes perceived through her left hand, while she could appreciate elementary sensorial features of items tactually presented to the same hand flawlessly. This picture, corresponding to classical descriptions of unilateral associative tactile agnosia, was associated with finger agnosia of the left hand. This very unusual case report can be interpreted as an instance of disconnection syndrome, and allows a discussion of mechanisms involved in tactile object recognition.

  19. An insect-inspired bionic sensor for tactile localisation and material classification with state-dependent modulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca ePatanè

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Insects carry a pair of antennae on their head: multimodal sensory organs that serve a wide range of sensory-guided behaviours. During locomotion, antennae are involved in near-range orientation, for example in detecting, localising, probing and negotiating obstacles.Here we present a bionic, active tactile sensing system inspired by insect antennae. It comprises an actuated elastic rod equipped with a terminal acceleration sensor. The measurement principle is based on the analysis of damped harmonic oscillations registered upon contact with an object. The dominant frequency of the oscillation is extracted to determine the distance of the contact point along the probe, and basal angular encoders allow tactile localisation in a polar coordinate system. Finally, the damping behaviour of the registered signal is exploited to determine the most likely material.The tactile sensor is tested in four approaches with increasing neural plausibility: First, we show that peak extraction from the Fourier spectrum is sufficient for tactile localisation with position errors below 1%. Also, the damping property of the extracted frequency is used for material classification. Second, we show that the Fourier spectrum can be analysed by an Artificial Neural Network which can be trained to decode contact distance and to classify contact materials. Thirdly, we show how efficiency can be improved by band-pass filtering the Fourier spectrum by application of non-negative matrix factorisation. This reduces the input dimension by 95% while reducing classification performance by 8% only. Finally, we replace the FFT by an array of spiking neurons with gradually differing resonance properties, such that their spike rate is a function of the input frequency. We show that this network can be applied to detect tactile contact events of a wheeled robot, and how detrimental effects of robot velocity on antennal dynamics can be suppressed by state-dependent modulation of the

  20. Tactile and non-tactile sensory paradigms for fMRI and neurophysiologic studies in rodents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanganahalli, Basavaraju G; Bailey, Christopher J; Herman, Peter; Hyder, Fahmeed

    2009-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has become a popular functional imaging tool for human studies. Future diagnostic use of fMRI depends, however, on a suitable neurophysiologic interpretation of the blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signal change. This particular goal is best achieved in animal models primarily due to the invasive nature of other methods used and/or pharmacological agents applied to probe different nuances of neuronal (and glial) activity coupled to the BOLD signal change. In the last decade, we have directed our efforts towards the development of stimulation protocols for a variety of modalities in rodents with fMRI. Cortical perception of the natural world relies on the formation of multi-dimensional representation of stimuli impinging on the different sensory systems, leading to the hypothesis that a sensory stimulus may have very different neurophysiologic outcome(s) when paired with a near simultaneous event in another modality. Before approaching this level of complexity, reliable measures must be obtained of the relatively small changes in the BOLD signal and other neurophysiologic markers (electrical activity, blood flow) induced by different peripheral stimuli. Here we describe different tactile (i.e., forepaw, whisker) and non-tactile (i.e., olfactory, visual) sensory paradigms applied to the anesthetized rat. The main focus is on development and validation of methods for reproducible stimulation of each sensory modality applied independently or in conjunction with one another, both inside and outside the magnet. We discuss similarities and/or differences across the sensory systems as well as advantages they may have for studying essential neuroscientific questions. We envisage that the different sensory paradigms described here may be applied directly to studies of multi-sensory interactions in anesthetized rats, en route to a rudimentary understanding of the awake functioning brain where various sensory cues presumably

  1. Suppl\\'eance perceptive par \\'electro-stimulation linguale embarqu\\'ee : perspectives pour la pr\\'evention des escarres chez le bless\\'e m\\'edullaire

    OpenAIRE

    Chenu, Olivier; Vuillerme, Nicolas; Moreau-Gaudry, Alexandre; Fleury, Anthony; Demongeot, Jacques; Payan, Yohan

    2007-01-01

    We introduce the innovative technologies, based on the concept of "sensory substitution", we are developing in the fields of biomedical engineering and human disability. Precisely, our goal is to design, develop and validate practical assistive biomedical and/or technical devices and/or rehabilitating procedures for persons with disabilities, using artificial tongue-placed tactile biofeedback systems. This paper proposes an application for pressure sores prevention in case of spinal cord inju...

  2. About Face: Evaluating and Managing Tactile Impairment at the Time of Autism Diagnosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louisa M. T. Silva

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Evaluation for sensory impairment is a routine part of autism diagnosis. Sensory impairment of hearing, vision, or touch results in developmental delay and must be addressed before delay can resolve. Recent studies confirm that tactile impairment is present in autism and can be effectively treated with a tactile stimulation protocol. The research suggests a change in management at the time of autism diagnosis to include evaluation and treatment of tactile impairment. Here we validate screening and management tool for tactile impairment, the Autism Touch and Self-Regulation Checklist, in 404 typical and autistic preschool children. The tool assesses tactile impairment by location and severity. Autistic children were distinguished by mixed pain and numbness on multiple areas including the face and mouth (F=412.1 (1,402;p<.000. Oral-facial tactile impairment interferes with the tactile stimulus to orienting. We hypothesized that oral-facial tactile impairment and difficulty orienting are predictive of ASD and that severity of tactile impairment is predictive of severity of ASD. Questions evaluating oral-facial and orienting responses correctly predicted 91% of the autism group. Severity of tactile impairment correctly predicted 81% of mild versus severe ASD. Results underscore the importance of evaluating and treating tactile impairment at the time of autism diagnosis.

  3. An Adaptation-Induced Repulsion Illusion in Tactile Spatial Perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lux Li

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Following focal sensory adaptation, the perceived separation between visual stimuli that straddle the adapted region is often exaggerated. For instance, in the tilt aftereffect illusion, adaptation to tilted lines causes subsequently viewed lines with nearby orientations to be perceptually repelled from the adapted orientation. Repulsion illusions in the nonvisual senses have been less studied. Here, we investigated whether adaptation induces a repulsion illusion in tactile spatial perception. In a two-interval forced-choice task, participants compared the perceived separation between two point-stimuli applied on the forearms successively. Separation distance was constant on one arm (the reference and varied on the other arm (the comparison. In Experiment 1, we took three consecutive baseline measurements, verifying that in the absence of manipulation, participants’ distance perception was unbiased across arms and stable across experimental blocks. In Experiment 2, we vibrated a region of skin on the reference arm, verifying that this focally reduced tactile sensitivity, as indicated by elevated monofilament detection thresholds. In Experiment 3, we applied vibration between the two reference points in our distance perception protocol and discovered that this caused an illusory increase in the separation between the points. We conclude that focal adaptation induces a repulsion aftereffect illusion in tactile spatial perception. The illusion provides clues as to how the tactile system represents spatial information. The analogous repulsion aftereffects caused by adaptation in different stimulus domains and sensory systems may point to fundamentally similar strategies for dynamic sensory coding.

  4. The TaSST: Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, G.; Darriba Frederiks, A.; van Dijk, B.; Heylen, D.; Kröse, B.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we outline the design process of the TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch), a touch-sensitive vibrotactile arm sleeve. The TaSST was designed to enable two people to communicate different types of touch over a distance. The touch-sensitive surface of the sleeve consists of a grid of

  5. The TaSST: Tactile sleeve for social touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, Gijs; Darriba Frederiks, Aduén; van Dijk, Elisabeth M.A.G.; Heylen, Dirk K.J.; Krose, Ben

    In this paper we outline the design process of the TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch), a touch-sensitive vibrotactile arm sleeve. The TaSST was designed to enable two people to communicate different types of touch over a distance. The touch-sensitive surface of the sleeve consists of a grid of

  6. The TaSST - Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, Gijs; Darriba Frederiks, Aduén; Van Dijk, Betsy; Heylen, Dirk

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we outline the design process of TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch), a touch-sensitive vibrotactile arm sleeve. The TaSST was designed to enable two people to communicate different types of touches over a distance. The touch-sensitive surface of the sleeve consists of a grid of

  7. Early vision impairs tactile perception in the blind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röder, Brigitte; Rösler, Frank; Spence, Charles

    2004-01-20

    Researchers have known for more than a century that crossing the hands can impair both tactile perception and the execution of appropriate finger movements. Sighted people find it more difficult to judge the temporal order when two tactile stimuli, one applied to either hand, are presented and their hands are crossed over the midline as compared to when they adopt a more typical uncrossed-hands posture. It has been argued that because of the dominant role of vision in motor planning and execution, tactile stimuli are remapped into externally defined coordinates (predominantly determined by visual inputs) that takes longer to achieve when external and body-centered codes (determined primarily by somatosensory/proprioceptive inputs) are in conflict and that involves both multisensory parietal and visual cortex. Here, we show that the performance of late, but not of congenitally, blind people was impaired by crossing the hands. Moreover, we provide the first empirical evidence for superior temporal order judgments (TOJs) for tactile stimuli in the congenitally blind. These findings suggest a critical role of childhood vision in modulating the perception of touch that may arise from the emergence of specific crossmodal links during development.

  8. Tactile short-term memory in sensory-deprived individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papagno, Costanza; Minniti, Giovanna; Mattavelli, Giulia C; Mantovan, Lara; Cecchetto, Carlo

    2017-02-01

    To verify whether loosing a sense or two has consequences on a spared sensory modality, namely touch, and whether these consequences depend on practice or are biologically determined, we investigated 13 deafblind participants, 16 deaf participants, 15 blind participants, and 13 matched normally sighted and hearing controls on a tactile short-term memory task, using checkerboard matrices of increasing length in which half of the squares were made up of a rough texture and half of a smooth one. Time of execution of a fixed matrix, number of correctly reproduced matrices, largest matrix correctly reproduced and tactile span were recorded. The three groups of sensory-deprived individuals did not differ in any measure, while blind and deaf participants outscored controls in all parameters except time of execution; the difference approached significance for deafblind people compared to controls only in one measure, namely correctly reproduced matrices. In blind and deafblind participants, performance negatively correlated with age of Braille acquisition, the older being the subject when acquiring Braille, the lower the performance, suggesting that practice plays a role. However, the fact that deaf participants, who did not share tactile experience, performed similarly to blind participants and significantly better than controls highlights that practice cannot be the only contribution to better tactile memory.

  9. Bilateral Symmetry of Distortions of Tactile Size Perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R; Ghosh, Arko; Yahya, Tasneem

    2015-01-01

    The perceived distance between touches on the limbs is generally bigger for distances oriented across the width of the limb than for distances oriented along the length of the limb. The present study aimed to investigate the coherence of such distortions of tactile size perception across different skin surfaces. We investigated distortions of tactile size perception on the dorsal and palmar surfaces of both the left and right hands as well as the forehead. Participants judged which of two tactile distances felt larger. One distance was aligned with the proximodistal axis (along the body), the other with the mediolateral axis (across the body). Clear distortions were found on all five skin surfaces, with stimuli oriented across the width of the body being perceived as farther apart than those oriented along the length of the body. Consistent with previous results, distortions were smaller on the palmar than on the dorsal hand surface. Distortion on the forehead was intermediate between the dorsal and palmar surfaces. There were clear correlations between distortion on the left and right hands, for both the dorsal and palmar skin surfaces. In contrast, within each hand, there was no significant correlation between the two skin surfaces. Distortion on the forehead was not significantly correlated with that on any of the other skin surfaces. These results provide evidence for bilaterally symmetric representations underlying tactile size perception. © The Author(s) 2015.

  10. Reproducibility of Tactile Assessments for Children with Unilateral Cerebral Palsy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Auld, Megan Louise; Ware, Robert S.; Boyd, Roslyn Nancy; Moseley, G. Lorimer; Johnston, Leanne Marie

    2012-01-01

    A systematic review identified tactile assessments used in children with cerebral palsy (CP), but their reproducibility is unknown. Sixteen children with unilateral CP and 31 typically developing children (TDC) were assessed 2-4 weeks apart. Test-retest percent agreements within one point for children with unilateral CP (and TDC) were…

  11. Spatial auditory attention is modulated by tactile priming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menning, Hans; Ackermann, Hermann; Hertrich, Ingo; Mathiak, Klaus

    2005-07-01

    Previous studies have shown that cross-modal processing affects perception at a variety of neuronal levels. In this study, event-related brain responses were recorded via whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG). Spatial auditory attention was directed via tactile pre-cues (primes) to one of four locations in the peripersonal space (left and right hand versus face). Auditory stimuli were white noise bursts, convoluted with head-related transfer functions, which ensured spatial perception of the four locations. Tactile primes (200-300 ms prior to acoustic onset) were applied randomly to one of these locations. Attentional load was controlled by three different visual distraction tasks. The auditory P50m (about 50 ms after stimulus onset) showed a significant "proximity" effect (larger responses to face stimulation as well as a "contralaterality" effect between side of stimulation and hemisphere). The tactile primes essentially reduced both the P50m and N100m components. However, facial tactile pre-stimulation yielded an enhanced ipsilateral N100m. These results show that earlier responses are mainly governed by exogenous stimulus properties whereas cross-sensory interaction is spatially selective at a later (endogenous) processing stage.

  12. Towards a standard on evaluation of tactile/haptic interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sinclair, I.; Carter, J.; Kassner, S.; Erp, J.B.F. van; Weber, G.; Elliott, L.; Andrew, I.

    2012-01-01

    Tactile and haptic interaction is becoming increasingly important; ergonomic standards can ensure that systems are designed with sufficient concern for ergonomics and interoperability. ISO (through working group TC159/SC4/WG9) is developing international standards in this subject area, dual-tracked

  13. Inducing circular vection with tactile stimulation encircling the waist

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tinga, A.M.; Jansen, C.; Smagt, M.J. van der; Nijboer, T.C.W.; Erp, J.B.F. van

    2018-01-01

    In general, moving sensory stimuli (visual and auditory) can induce illusory sensations of self-motion (i.e. vection) in the direction opposite of the sensory stimulation. The aim of the current study was to examine whether tactile stimulation encircling the waist could induce circular vection

  14. Description of a papillate tactile organ in the Typhlopidae

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    There are a variet)-' of tactile receptors located within snake skin, including free nerve endings, terminal receptors resem- bling Merkel cells, and lamellated receptors (Von DUring &. Miller 1979; Young 1997). Many of these receptors produce a deformation in the overlying ~-layer of the epidermis, but are not evident when ...

  15. Durable Tactile Glove for Human or Robot Hand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butzer, Melissa; Diftler, Myron A.; Huber, Eric

    2010-01-01

    A glove containing force sensors has been built as a prototype of tactile sensor arrays to be worn on human hands and anthropomorphic robot hands. The force sensors of this glove are mounted inside, in protective pockets; as a result of this and other design features, the present glove is more durable than earlier models.

  16. Auditory, Tactile, and Audiotactile Information Processing Following Visual Deprivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Occelli, Valeria; Spence, Charles; Zampini, Massimiliano

    2013-01-01

    We highlight the results of those studies that have investigated the plastic reorganization processes that occur within the human brain as a consequence of visual deprivation, as well as how these processes give rise to behaviorally observable changes in the perceptual processing of auditory and tactile information. We review the evidence showing…

  17. Small-scale tactile graphics for virtual reality systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, John W.; Slattery, Oliver T.; Swope, Brett; Min, Volker; Comstock, Tracy

    2002-05-01

    As virtual reality technology moves forward, there is a need to provide the user with options for greater realism for closer engagement to the human senses. Haptic systems use force feedback to create a large-scale sensation of physical interaction in a virtual environment. Further refinement can be created by using tactile graphics to reproduce a detailed sense of touch. For example, a haptic system might create the sensation of the weight of a virtual orange that the user picks up, and the sensation of pressure on the fingers as the user squeezes the orange. A tactile graphic system could create the texture of the orange on the user's fingertips. IN the real wold, a detailed sense of touch plays a large part in picking up and manipulating small objects. Our team is working to develop technology that can drive a high density fingertip array of tactile simulators at a rapid refresh rate, sufficient to produce a realistic sense of touch. To meet the project criteria, the mechanism must be much lower cost than existing technologies, and must be sufficiently lightweight and compact to permit portable use and to enable installation of the stimulator array in the fingertip of a tactile glove. The primary intended applications for this technology are accessibility for the blind and visually impaired, teleoperation, and virtual reality systems.

  18. Hybrid-Actuated Finger Prosthesis with Tactile Sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng Yee Low

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Finger prostheses are devices developed to emulate the functionality of natural human fingers. On top of their aesthetic appearance in terms of shape, size and colour, such biomimetic devices require a high level of dexterity. They must be capable of gripping an object, and even manipulating it in the hand. This paper presents a biomimetic robotic finger actuated by a hybrid mechanism and integrated with a tactile sensor. The hybrid actuation mechanism comprises a DC micromotor and a Shape Memory Alloy (SMA wire. A customized test rig has been developed to measure the force and stroke produced by the SMA wire. In parallel with the actuator development, experimental investigations have been conducted on Quantum Tunnelling Composite (QTC and Pressure Conductive Rubber (PCR towards the development of a tactile sensor for the finger. The viability of using these materials for tactile sensing has been determined. Such a hybrid actuation approach aided with tactile sensing capability enables a finger design as an integral part of a prosthetic hand for applications up to the transradial amputation level.

  19. Neuroplasticity associated with tactile language communication in a deaf-blind subject

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Souzana Obretenova

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available A longstanding debate in cognitive neuroscience pertains to the innate nature of language development and the underlying factors that determine this faculty. We explored the neural correlates associated with language processing in a unique individual who is early blind, congenitally deaf, and possesses a high level of language function. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, we compared the neural networks associated with the tactile reading of words presented in Braille, Print on Palm (POP, and a haptic form of American Sign Language (haptic ASL or hASL. With all three modes of tactile communication, indentifying words was associated with robust activation within occipital cortical regions as well as posterior superior temporal and inferior frontal language areas (lateralized within the left hemisphere. In a normally sighted and hearing interpreter, identifying words through hASL was associated with left-lateralized activation of inferior frontal language areas however robust occipital cortex activation was not observed. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI-based tractography revealed differences consistent with enhanced occipital-temporal connectivity in the deaf-blind subject. Our results demonstrate that in the case of early onset of both visual and auditory deprivation, tactile-based communication is associated with an extensive cortical network implicating occipital as well as posterior superior temporal and frontal associated language areas. The cortical areas activated in this deaf-blind subject are consistent with characteristic cortical regions previously implicated with language. Finally, the resilience of language function within the context of early and combined visual and auditory deprivation may be related to enhanced connectivity between relevant cortical areas.

  20. Integration of Fiber-Optic Sensor Arrays into a Multi-Modal Tactile Sensor Processing System for Robotic End-Effectors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Kampmann

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available With the increasing complexity of robotic missions and the development towards long-term autonomous systems, the need for multi-modal sensing of the environment increases. Until now, the use of tactile sensor systems has been mostly based on sensing one modality of forces in the robotic end-effector. The use of a multi-modal tactile sensory system is motivated, which combines static and dynamic force sensor arrays together with an absolute force measurement system. This publication is focused on the development of a compact sensor interface for a fiber-optic sensor array, as optic measurement principles tend to have a bulky interface. Mechanical, electrical and software approaches are combined to realize an integrated structure that provides decentralized data pre-processing of the tactile measurements. Local behaviors are implemented using this setup to show the effectiveness of this approach.

  1. The workload implications of haptic displays in multi-display environments such as the cockpit: Dual-task interference of within-sense haptic inputs (tactile/proprioceptive) and between-sense inputs (tactile/proprioceptive/auditory/visual)

    OpenAIRE

    Castle, H

    2007-01-01

    Visual workload demand within the cockpit is reaching saturation, whereas the haptic sense (proprioceptive and tactile sensation) is relatively untapped, despite studies suggesting the benefits of haptic displays. MRT suggests that inputs from haptic displays will not interfere with inputs from visual or auditory displays. MRT is based on the premise that multisensory integration occurs only after unisensory processing. However, recent neuroscientific findings suggest that t...

  2. Acquisition of multiple prior distributions in tactile temporal order judgment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yasuhito eNagai

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available The Bayesian estimation theory proposes that the brain acquires the prior distribution of a task and integrates it with sensory signals to minimize the effect of sensory noise. Psychophysical studies have demonstrated that our brain actually implements Bayesian estimation in a variety of sensory-motor tasks. However, these studies only imposed one prior distribution on participants within a task period. In this study, we investigated the conditions that enable the acquisition of multiple prior distributions in temporal order judgment (TOJ of two tactile stimuli across the hands. In Experiment 1, stimulation intervals were randomly selected from one of two prior distributions (biased to right hand earlier and biased to left hand earlier in association with color cues (green and red, respectively. Although the acquisition of the two priors was not enabled by the color cues alone, it was significant when participants shifted their gaze (above or below in response to the color cues. However, the acquisition of multiple priors was not significant when participants moved their mouths (opened or closed. In Experiment 2, the spatial cues (above and below were used to identify which eye position or retinal cue position was crucial for the eye-movement-dependent acquisition of multiple priors in Experiment 1. The acquisition of the two priors was significant when participants moved their gaze to the cues (i.e., the cue positions on the retina were constant across the priors, as well as when participants did not shift their gazes (i.e., the cue positions on the retina changed according to the priors. Thus, both eye and retinal cue positions were effective in acquiring multiple priors. Based on previous neurophysiological reports, we discuss possible neural correlates that contribute to the acquisition of multiple priors.

  3. Artificial tactile sensing in minimally invasive surgery - a new technical approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schostek, Sebastian; Ho, Chi-Nghia; Kalanovic, Daniel; Schurr, Marc O

    2006-01-01

    The loss of tactile sensation is a commonly known drawback of minimally invasive surgery (MIS). Since the advent of MIS, research activities in providing tactile information to the surgeon are still ongoing, in order to improve patient safety and to extend the indications for MIS. We have designed a tactile sensor system comprising a tactile laparoscopic grasper for surgical palpation. For this purpose, we developed a novel tactile sensor technology which allows the manufacturing of an integrated sensor array within an acceptable price range. The array was integrated into the jaws of a 10mm laparoscopic grasper. The tactile data are transferred wirelessly via Bluetooth and are presented visually to the surgeon. The goal was to be able to obtain information about the shape and consistency of tissue structures by gently compressing the tissue between the jaws of the tactile instrument and thus to be able to recognize and assess anatomical or pathological structures, even if they are hidden in the tissue. With a prototype of the tactile sensor system we have conducted bench-tests as well as in-vitro and in-vivo experiments. The system proved feasibility in an experimental environment, it was easy to use, and the novel tactile sensor array was applicable for both palpation and grasping manoeuvres with forces of up to 60N. The tactile data turned out to be a useful supplement to the minimal amount of haptic feedback that is provided by current endoscopic instruments and the endoscopic image under certain conditions.

  4. Merkel disc is a serotonergic synapse in the epidermis for transmitting tactile signals in mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Weipang; Kanda, Hirosato; Ikeda, Ryo; Ling, Jennifer; DeBerry, Jennifer J; Gu, Jianguo G

    2016-09-13

    The evolution of sensory systems has let mammals develop complicated tactile end organs to enable sophisticated sensory tasks, including social interaction, environmental exploration, and tactile discrimination. The Merkel disc, a main type of tactile end organ consisting of Merkel cells (MCs) and Aβ-afferent endings, are highly abundant in fingertips, touch domes, and whisker hair follicles of mammals. The Merkel disc has high tactile acuity for an object's physical features, such as texture, shape, and edges. Mechanisms underlying the tactile function of Merkel discs are obscured as to how MCs transmit tactile signals to Aβ-afferent endings leading to tactile sensations. Using mouse whisker hair follicles, we show herein that tactile stimuli are transduced by MCs into excitatory signals that trigger vesicular serotonin release from MCs. We identify that both ionotropic and metabotropic 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) receptors are expressed on whisker Aβ-afferent endings and that their activation by serotonin released from MCs initiates Aβ-afferent impulses. Moreover, we demonstrate that these ionotropic and metabotropic 5-HT receptors have a synergistic effect that is critical to both electrophysiological and behavioral tactile responses. These findings elucidate that the Merkel disc is a unique serotonergic synapse located in the epidermis and plays a key role in tactile transmission. The epidermal serotonergic synapse may have important clinical implications in sensory dysfunctions, such as the loss of tactile sensitivity and tactile allodynia seen in patients who have diabetes, inflammatory diseases, and undergo chemotherapy. It may also have implications in the exaggerated tactile sensations induced by recreational drugs that act on serotoninergic synapses.

  5. White matter microstructure is associated with auditory and tactile processing in children with and without sensory processing disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Shin Chang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Sensory processing disorders (SPD affect up to 16% of school-aged children, and contribute to cognitive and behavioral deficits impacting affected individuals and their families. While sensory processing differences are now widely recognized in children with autism, children with sensory-based dysfunction who do not meet autism criteria based on social communication deficits remain virtually unstudied. In a previous pilot diffusion tensor imaging (DTI study, we demonstrated that boys with SPD have altered white matter microstructure primarily affecting the posterior cerebral tracts, which subserve sensory processing and integration. This disrupted microstructural integrity, measured as reduced white matter fractional anisotropy (FA, correlated with parent report measures of atypical sensory behavior. In this present study, we investigate white matter microstructure as it relates to tactile and auditory function in depth with a larger, mixed-gender cohort of children 8 to 12 years of age. We continue to find robust alterations of posterior white matter microstructure in children with SPD relative to typically developing children, along with more spatially distributed alterations. We find strong correlations of FA with both parent report and direct measures of tactile and auditory processing across children, with the direct assessment measures of tactile and auditory processing showing a stronger and more continuous mapping to the underlying white matter integrity than the corresponding parent report measures. Based on these findings of microstructure as a neural correlate of sensory processing ability, diffusion MRI merits further investigation as a tool to find biomarkers for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment response in children with SPD. To our knowledge, this work is the first to demonstrate associations of directly measured tactile and non-linguistic auditory function with white matter microstructural integrity -- not just in children with

  6. [Short-term memory characteristics of vibration intensity tactile perception on human wrist].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Fei; Chen, Li-Juan; Lu, Wei; Song, Ai-Guo

    2014-12-25

    In this study, a recall experiment and a recognition experiment were designed to assess the human wrist's short-term memory characteristics of tactile perception on vibration intensity, by using a novel homemade vibrotactile display device based on the spatiotemporal combination vibration of multiple micro vibration motors as a test device. Based on the obtained experimental data, the short-term memory span, recognition accuracy and reaction time of vibration intensity were analyzed. From the experimental results, some important conclusions can be made: (1) The average short-term memory span of tactile perception on vibration intensity is 3 ± 1 items; (2) The greater difference between two adjacent discrete intensities of vibrotactile stimulation is defined, the better average short-term memory span human wrist gets; (3) There is an obvious difference of the average short-term memory span on vibration intensity between the male and female; (4) The mechanism of information extraction in short-term memory of vibrotactile display is to traverse the scanning process by comparison; (5) The recognition accuracy and reaction time performance of vibrotactile display compares unfavourably with that of visual and auditory. The results from this study are important for designing vibrotactile display coding scheme.

  7. Tactile Sensor Array with Fiber Bragg Gratings in Quasi-Distributed Sensing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcelo A. Pedroso

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available This work describes the development of a quasi-distributed real-time tactile sensing system with a reduced number of fiber Bragg grating-based sensors and reports its use with a reconstruction method based on differential evolution. The sensing system is comprised of six fiber Bragg gratings encapsulated in silicone elastomer to form a tactile sensor array with total dimensions of 60 × 80 mm, divided into eight sensing cells with dimensions of 20 × 30 mm. Forces applied at the central position of the sensor array resulted in linear response curves for the gratings, highlighting their coupled responses and allowing the application of compressive sensing. The reduced number of sensors regarding the number of sensing cells results in an undetermined inverse problem, solved with a compressive sensing algorithm with the aid of differential evolution method. The system is capable of identifying and quantifying up to four different loads at four different cells with relative errors lower than 10.5% and signal-to-noise ratio better than 12 dB.

  8. Integrated dynamic and static tactile sensor: focus on static force sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wettels, Nicholas; Pletner, Baruch

    2012-04-01

    Object grasping by robotic hands in unstructured environments demands a sensor that is durable, compliant, and responsive to static and dynamic force conditions. In order for a tactile sensor to be useful for grasp control in these, it should have the following properties: tri-axial force sensing (two shear plus normal component), dynamic event sensing across slip frequencies, compliant surface for grip, wide dynamic range (depending on application), insensitivity to environmental conditions, ability to withstand abuse and good sensing behavior (e.g. low hysteresis, high repeatability). These features can be combined in a novel multimodal tactile sensor. This sensor combines commercial-off-the-shelf MEMS technology with two proprietary force sensors: a high bandwidth device based on PZT technology and low bandwidth device based on elastomers and optics. In this study, we focus on the latter transduction mechanism and the proposed architecture of the completed device. In this study, an embedded LED was utilized to produce a constant light source throughout a layer of silicon rubber which covered a plastic mandrel containing a set of sensitive phototransistors. Features about the contacted object such as center of pressure and force vectors can be extracted from the information in the changing patterns of light. The voltage versus force relationship obtained with this molded humanlike finger had a wide dynamic range that coincided with forces relevant for most human grip tasks.

  9. High Resolution Tactile Sensors for Curved Robotic Fingertips

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drimus, Alin; Jankovics, Vince; Gorsic, Matija

    2014-01-01

    Tactile sensing is a key element for various animals that interact with the environment and surrounding objects. Touch provides information about contact forces, torques and pressure distribution and by the means of exploration it provides object properties such as geometry, stiffness and texture...... trivial to obtain, dealing with limited accuracy, occlusions and calibration problems. In terms of sensors for static stimuli, such as pressure, there are a range of technologies that can be used to manufacture transducers with various results[5].......Tactile sensing is a key element for various animals that interact with the environment and surrounding objects. Touch provides information about contact forces, torques and pressure distribution and by the means of exploration it provides object properties such as geometry, stiffness and texture[5...

  10. A Magnetoresistive Tactile Sensor for Harsh Environment Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed; Khan, Mohammed Zahed Mustafa; Cardoso, Susana; Leitao, Diana; Kosel, Jü rgen

    2016-01-01

    A magnetoresistive tactile sensor is reported, which is capable of working in high temperatures up to 140 °C. Hair-like bioinspired structures, known as cilia, made out of permanent magnetic nanocomposite material on top of spin-valve giant magnetoresistive (GMR) sensors are used for tactile sensing at high temperatures. The magnetic nanocomposite, consisting of iron nanowires incorporated into the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), is very flexible, biocompatible, has high remanence, and is also resilient to antagonistic sensing ambient. When the cilia come in contact with a surface, they deflect in compliance with the surface topology. This yields a change of the GMR sensor signal, enabling the detection of extremely fine features. The spin-valve is covered with a passivation layer, which enables adequate performance in spite of harsh environmental conditions, as demonstrated in this paper for high temperature.

  11. Psychophysical evaluation of a variable friction tactile interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samur, Evren; Colgate, J. Edward; Peshkin, Michael A.

    2009-02-01

    This study explores the haptic rendering capabilities of a variable friction tactile interface through psychophysical experiments. In order to obtain a deeper understanding of the sensory resolution associated with the Tactile Pattern Display (TPaD), friction discrimination experiments are conducted. During the experiments, subjects are asked to explore the glass surface of the TPaD using their bare index fingers, to feel the friction on the surface, and to compare the slipperiness of two stimuli, displayed in sequential order. The fingertip position data is collected by an infrared frame and normal and translational forces applied by the finger are measured by force sensors attached to the TPaD. The recorded data is used to calculate the coefficient of friction between the fingertip and the TPaD. The experiments determine the just noticeable difference (JND) of friction coefficient for humans interacting with the TPaD.

  12. When touch matters: an affective tactile intervention for older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammarella, Nicola; Fairfield, Beth; Di Domenico, Alberto

    2012-10-01

    Our goal was to test the hypothesis that positive tactile experiences can lead to an improvement in cognitive, emotional skills and perceived quality of life in a group of healthy community-dwelling older adults. During a 10-week period, older adults completed a series of activities that required manipulating either a piece of velvet, a piece of canvas or velcro. Only older adults who worked with velvet showed an increase in cognitive and emotional skills, and the perceived quality of life. Our study is one of the first to show that positive tactile experiences might have a beneficial effect on the psychological well-being of healthy community-dwelling older adults across different domains. © 2012 Japan Geriatrics Society.

  13. A flexible capacitive tactile sensing array with floating electrodes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cheng, M-Y; Huang, X-H; Ma, C-W; Yang, Y-J

    2009-01-01

    In this work, we present the development of a capacitive tactile sensing array realized by using MEMS fabrication techniques and flexible printed circuit board (FPCB) technologies. The sensing array, which consists of two micromachined polydimethlysiloxane (PDMS) structures and a FPCB, will be used as the artificial skin for robot applications. Each capacitive sensing element comprises two sensing electrodes and a common floating electrode. The sensing electrodes and the metal interconnect for signal scanning are implemented on the FPCB, while the floating electrode is patterned on one of the PDMS structures. This special design can effectively reduce the complexity of the device structure and thus makes the device highly manufacturable. The characteristics of the devices with different dimensions are measured and discussed. The corresponding scanning circuits are also designed and implemented. The tactile images induced by the PMMA stamps of different shapes are also successfully captured by a fabricated 8 × 8 array

  14. A Magnetoresistive Tactile Sensor for Harsh Environment Applications

    KAUST Repository

    Alfadhel, Ahmed

    2016-05-07

    A magnetoresistive tactile sensor is reported, which is capable of working in high temperatures up to 140 °C. Hair-like bioinspired structures, known as cilia, made out of permanent magnetic nanocomposite material on top of spin-valve giant magnetoresistive (GMR) sensors are used for tactile sensing at high temperatures. The magnetic nanocomposite, consisting of iron nanowires incorporated into the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), is very flexible, biocompatible, has high remanence, and is also resilient to antagonistic sensing ambient. When the cilia come in contact with a surface, they deflect in compliance with the surface topology. This yields a change of the GMR sensor signal, enabling the detection of extremely fine features. The spin-valve is covered with a passivation layer, which enables adequate performance in spite of harsh environmental conditions, as demonstrated in this paper for high temperature.

  15. A Magnetoresistive Tactile Sensor for Harsh Environment Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Alfadhel

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A magnetoresistive tactile sensor is reported, which is capable of working in high temperatures up to 140 °C. Hair-like bioinspired structures, known as cilia, made out of permanent magnetic nanocomposite material on top of spin-valve giant magnetoresistive (GMR sensors are used for tactile sensing at high temperatures. The magnetic nanocomposite, consisting of iron nanowires incorporated into the polymer polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS, is very flexible, biocompatible, has high remanence, and is also resilient to antagonistic sensing ambient. When the cilia come in contact with a surface, they deflect in compliance with the surface topology. This yields a change of the GMR sensor signal, enabling the detection of extremely fine features. The spin-valve is covered with a passivation layer, which enables adequate performance in spite of harsh environmental conditions, as demonstrated in this paper for high temperature.

  16. Tactile and visual perception of injection moulded plastic parts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Jacob Tobias; Akbas, Erkan; Madsen, Mads

    In today’s world the technical development have reached high levels in many products. This means that the technical specifications are not as high a competition factor as it has been. Therefore the visual appeal (aesthetics) and tactile perception (ergonomics) have become much more important in t...... in a number of ways including measuring of surface roughness, contact angle, gloss measurement and human perception....

  17. On the effects of tactile touch in Parkinson's disease patients

    OpenAIRE

    Skogar, Örjan

    2013-01-01

    Background: Tactile Touch as a treatment modality is, in broad terms, scientifically unexplored. Patients use Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) forms of treatment outside the area of pharmaceuticals to a great extent, particularly patients suffering from chronic diseases. Delineating and evaluating patients’ own experiences of alleviation using different treatment forms are important tasks for modern health services. The search for humoral substrates that reflect bodily experie...

  18. Manual command component with tactile and/or kinesthetic feedback

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Foumier, R.

    1995-01-01

    The invention concerns a manual command component designed to be use by a human hand in order to control a slave system, with a tactile and/or kinesthetic feedback. It is composed by a handle and by piece(s) for the feedback. The handle contains a captor to signalize the move and the speed. The signals are transmitted to the slave system. The later send feedbacks which are transformed in a couple for the handle. (TEC)

  19. Audio-Tactile Integration and the Influence of Musical Training

    OpenAIRE

    Kuchenbuch, Anja; Paraskevopoulos, Evangelos; Herholz, Sibylle C.; Pantev, Christo

    2014-01-01

    Perception of our environment is a multisensory experience; information from different sensory systems like the auditory, visual and tactile is constantly integrated. Complex tasks that require high temporal and spatial precision of multisensory integration put strong demands on the underlying networks but it is largely unknown how task experience shapes multisensory processing. Long-term musical training is an excellent model for brain plasticity because it shapes the human brain at function...

  20. Tactile Feedback for Above-Device Gesture Interfaces

    OpenAIRE

    Freeman, Euan; Brewster, Stephen; Lantz, Vuokko

    2014-01-01

    Above-device gesture interfaces let people interact in the space above mobile devices using hand and finger movements. For example, users could gesture over a mobile phone or wearable without having to use the touchscreen. We look at how above-device interfaces can also give feedback in the space over the device. Recent haptic and wearable technologies give new ways to provide tactile feedback while gesturing, letting touchless gesture interfaces give touch feedback. In this paper we take a f...

  1. Arborealities: The Tactile Ecology of Hardy’s Woodlanders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William A. Cohen

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This article asks what consequences two recent movements in scholarship - affect theory and environmental studies - might have for understanding the Victorian tactile imagination. Thomas Hardy's 1887 novel 'The Woodlanders' provides a means of addressing this question, for it shares with posthumanist critics a view that people are material things in a world of things, and that the world is itself a collection of vital agencies and networked actors. Hardy shows how a tactile modality provides a point of entry into discussions of both affect and ecology, situating the human in a proximate, contiguous relation to both bodily and environmental materialities. 'The Woodlanders' offers a world in which trees, in particular, work on - and are in turn worked on by - human objects; a world in which, one might say, the trees are people and the people are trees. This arboreality is far from a sentimental oneness with nature, nor is it an exercise in anthropomorphization. Instead, it provides a recognition of the inhuman, material, and sensate aspects of the human; or, perhaps better, of the human as rooted, budding, leafy, and abloom. Like some recent theoretical accounts, 'The Woodlanders' disperses agency among human and non-human elements alike, employing a tactile mode of representation to break down distinctions between them. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE

  2. Improved tactile resonance sensor for robotic assisted surgery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliva Uribe, David; Schoukens, Johan; Stroop, Ralf

    2018-01-01

    This paper presents an improved tactile sensor using a piezoelectric bimorph able to differentiate soft materials with similar mechanical characteristics. The final aim is to develop intelligent surgical tools for brain tumour resection using integrated sensors in order to improve tissue tumour delineation and tissue differentiation. The bimorph sensor is driven using a random phase multisine and the properties of contact between the sensor's tip and a certain load are evaluated by means of the evaluation of the nonparametric FRF. An analysis of the nonlinear contributions is presented to show that the use of a linear model is feasible for the measurement conditions. A series of gelatine phantoms were tested. The tactile sensor is able to identify minimal differences in the consistency of the measured samples considering viscoelastic behaviour. A variance analysis was performed to evaluate the reliability of the sensors and to identify possible error sources due to inconsistencies in the preparation method of the phantoms. The results of the variance analysis are discussed showing that ability of the proposed tactile sensor to perform high quality measurements.

  3. Neural correlates associated with superior tactile symmetry perception in the early blind

    OpenAIRE

    Bauer, Corinna; Yazzolino, Lindsay; Hirsch, Gabriella; Cattaneo, Zaira; Vecchi, Tomaso; Merabet, Lotfi B.

    2014-01-01

    Symmetry is an organizational principle that is ubiquitous throughout the visual world. However, this property can also be detected through non-visual modalities such as touch. The role of prior visual experience on detecting tactile patterns containing symmetry remains unclear. We compared the behavioral performance of early blind and sighted (blindfolded) controls on a tactile symmetry detection task. The tactile patterns used were similar in design and complexity as in previous visual perc...

  4. About Face: Evaluating and Managing Tactile Impairment at the Time of Autism Diagnosis

    OpenAIRE

    Silva, Louisa M. T.; Schalock, Mark; Gabrielsen, Kristen R.

    2015-01-01

    Evaluation for sensory impairment is a routine part of autism diagnosis. Sensory impairment of hearing, vision, or touch results in developmental delay and must be addressed before delay can resolve. Recent studies confirm that tactile impairment is present in autism and can be effectively treated with a tactile stimulation protocol. The research suggests a change in management at the time of autism diagnosis to include evaluation and treatment of tactile impairment. Here we validate screenin...

  5. Evaluating tactile feedback in robotic surgery for potential clinical application using an animal model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wottawa, Christopher R; Genovese, Bradley; Nowroozi, Bryan N; Hart, Steven D; Bisley, James W; Grundfest, Warren S; Dutson, Erik P

    2016-08-01

    The aims of this study were to evaluate (1) grasping forces with the application of a tactile feedback system in vivo and (2) the incidence of tissue damage incurred during robotic tissue manipulation. Robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery has been shown to be beneficial in a variety of surgical specialties, particularly radical prostatectomy. This innovative surgical tool offers advantages over traditional laparoscopic techniques, such as improved wrist-like maneuverability, stereoscopic video displays, and scaling of surgical gestures to increase precision. A widely cited disadvantage associated with robotic systems is the absence of tactile feedback. Nineteen subjects were categorized into two groups: 5 experts (six or more robotic cases) and 14 novices (five cases or less). The subjects used the da Vinci with integrated tactile feedback to run porcine bowel in the following conditions: (T1: deactivated tactile feedback; T2: activated tactile feedback; and T3: deactivated tactile feedback). The grasping force, incidence of tissue damage, and the correlation of grasping force and tissue damage were analyzed. Tissue damage was evaluated both grossly and histologically by a pathologist blinded to the sample. Tactile feedback resulted in significantly decreased grasping forces for both experts and novices (P system was deactivated (P > 0.05 in all subjects). The in vivo application of integrated tactile feedback in the robotic system demonstrates significantly reduced grasping forces, resulting in significantly less tissue damage. This tactile feedback system may improve surgical outcomes and broaden the use of robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery.

  6. The effect of chronic low back pain on tactile suppression during back movements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Damme, Stefaan; Van Hulle, Lore; Danneels, Lieven; Spence, Charles; Crombez, Geert

    2014-10-01

    The aim of the present study was to examine whether tactile suppression, the phenomenon whereby tactile perception is suppressed during movement, would occur in the context of back movements. Of particular interest, it was investigated if tactile suppression in the back would be attenuated in those suffering from chronic low back pain. Individuals with chronic low back pain (N = 30) and a matched control group (N = 24) detected tactile stimuli on three possible locations (back, arm, chest) while performing a back or arm movement, or no movement. We hypothesized that the movements would induce tactile suppression, and that this effect would be largest for low-intense stimuli on the moving body part. We further hypothesized that, during back movements, tactile suppression on the back would be less pronounced in the chronic low back pain group than in the control group. The results showed the expected general tactile suppression effects. The hypothesis of back-specific attenuation of tactile suppression in the chronic low back pain group was not supported. However, back-specific tactile suppression in the chronic low back pain group was less pronounced in those who performed the back movements more slowly. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Merkel cells transduce and encode tactile stimuli to drive Aβ-afferent impulses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikeda, Ryo; Cha, Myeounghoon; Ling, Jennifer; Jia, Zhanfeng; Coyle, Dennis; Gu, Jianguo G.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Sensory systems for detecting tactile stimuli have evolved from touch-sensing nerves in invertebrates to complicated tactile end-organs in mammals. Merkel discs are tactile end-organs consisting of Merkel cells and Aβ-afferent nerve endings, and are localized in fingertips, whisker hair follicles and other touch-sensitive spots. Merkel discs transduce touch into slowly adapting impulses to enable tactile discrimination, but their transduction and encoding mechanisms remain unknown. Using rat whisker hair follicles, we show that Merkel cells rather than Aβ-afferent nerve endings are primary sites of tactile transduction, and identify the Piezo2 ion channel as the Merkel cell mechanical transducer. Piezo2 transduces tactile stimuli into Ca2+-action potentials in Merkel cells, which drive Aβ-afferent nerve endings to fire slowly adapting impulses. We further demonstrate that Piezo2 and Ca2+-action potentials in Merkel cells are required for behavioral tactile responses. Our findings provide insights into how tactile end-organs function and have clinical implications for tactile dysfunctions. PMID:24746027

  8. Tactile detection of slip: surface microgeometry and peripheral neural codes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasan, M A; Whitehouse, J M; LaMotte, R H

    1990-06-01

    1. The role of the microgeometry of planar surfaces in the detection of sliding of the surfaces on human and monkey fingerpads was investigated. By the use of a servo-controlled tactile stimulator to press and stroke glass plates on passive fingerpads of human subjects, the ability of humans to discriminate the direction of skin stretch caused by friction and to detect the sliding motion (slip) of the plates with or without micrometer-sized surface features was determined. To identify the associated peripheral neural codes, evoked responses to the same stimuli were recorded from single, low-threshold mechanoreceptive afferent fibers innervating the fingerpads of anesthetized macaque monkeys. 2. Humans could not detect the slip of a smooth glass plate on the fingerpad. However, the direction of skin stretch was perceived based on the information conveyed by the slowly adapting afferents that respond differentially to the stretch directions. Whereas the direction of skin stretch signaled the direction of impending slip, the perception of relative motion between the plate and the finger required the existence of detectable surface features. 3. Barely detectable micrometer-sized protrusions on smooth surfaces led to the detection of slip of these surfaces, because of the exclusive activation of rapidly adapting fibers of either the Meissner (RA) or the Pacinian (PC) type to specific geometries of the microfeatures. The motion of a smooth plate with a very small single raised dot (4 microns high, 550 microns diam) caused the sequential activation of neighboring RAs along the dot path, thus providing a reliable spatiotemporal code. The stroking of the plate with a fine homogeneous texture composed of a matrix of dots (1 microns high, 50 microns diam, and spaced at 100 microns center-to-center) induced vibrations in the fingerpad that activated only the PCs and resulted in an intensive code. 4. The results show that surprisingly small features on smooth surfaces are

  9. Comparison of tactile, auditory and visual modality for brain-computer interface use: A case study with a patient in the locked-in state

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias eKaufmann

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes a case study with a patient in the classic locked-in state, who currently has no means of independent communication. Following a user-centered approach, we investigated event-related potentials elicited in different modalities for use in brain-computer interface systems. Such systems could provide her with an alternative communication channel. To investigate the most viable modality for achieving BCI based communication, classic oddball paradigms (1 rare and 1 frequent stimulus, ratio 1:5 in the visual, auditory and tactile modality were conducted (2 runs per modality. Classifiers were built on one run and tested offline on another run (and vice versa. In these paradigms, the tactile modality was clearly superior to other modalities, displaying high offline accuracy even when classification was performed on single trials only. Consequently, we tested the tactile paradigm online and the patient successfully selected targets without any error. Furthermore, we investigated use of the visual or tactile modality for different BCI systems with more than two selection options. In the visual modality, several BCI paradigms were tested offline. Neither matrix-based nor so-called gaze-independent paradigms constituted a means of control. These results may thus question the gaze-independence of current gaze-independent approaches to BCI. A tactile four-choice BCI resulted in high offline classification accuracies. Yet, online use raised various issues. Although performance was clearly above chance, practical daily life use appeared unlikely when compared to other communication approaches (e.g. partner scanning. Our results emphasize the need for user-centered design in BCI development including identification of the best stimulus modality for a particular user. Finally, the paper discusses feasibility of EEG-based BCI systems for patients in classic locked-in state and compares BCI to other AT solutions that we also tested during the

  10. Comparison of tactile, auditory, and visual modality for brain-computer interface use: a case study with a patient in the locked-in state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufmann, Tobias; Holz, Elisa M; Kübler, Andrea

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes a case study with a patient in the classic locked-in state, who currently has no means of independent communication. Following a user-centered approach, we investigated event-related potentials (ERP) elicited in different modalities for use in brain-computer interface (BCI) systems. Such systems could provide her with an alternative communication channel. To investigate the most viable modality for achieving BCI based communication, classic oddball paradigms (1 rare and 1 frequent stimulus, ratio 1:5) in the visual, auditory and tactile modality were conducted (2 runs per modality). Classifiers were built on one run and tested offline on another run (and vice versa). In these paradigms, the tactile modality was clearly superior to other modalities, displaying high offline accuracy even when classification was performed on single trials only. Consequently, we tested the tactile paradigm online and the patient successfully selected targets without any error. Furthermore, we investigated use of the visual or tactile modality for different BCI systems with more than two selection options. In the visual modality, several BCI paradigms were tested offline. Neither matrix-based nor so-called gaze-independent paradigms constituted a means of control. These results may thus question the gaze-independence of current gaze-independent approaches to BCI. A tactile four-choice BCI resulted in high offline classification accuracies. Yet, online use raised various issues. Although performance was clearly above chance, practical daily life use appeared unlikely when compared to other communication approaches (e.g., partner scanning). Our results emphasize the need for user-centered design in BCI development including identification of the best stimulus modality for a particular user. Finally, the paper discusses feasibility of EEG-based BCI systems for patients in classic locked-in state and compares BCI to other AT solutions that we also tested during the

  11. Feasibility study of patient motion monitoring by using tactile array sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Tae-Ho; Kang, Seong-Hee; Kim, Dong-Su; Cho, Min-Seok; Kim, Kyeong-Hyeon; Suh, Tae-Suk; Kim, Siyong

    2015-07-01

    An ideal alignment method based on the external anatomical surface of the patient should consider the entire region of interest. However, optical-camera-based systems cannot blindly monitor such areas as the patient's back, for example. Furthermore, collecting enough information to correct the associated deformation error is impossible. The study aim is to propose a new patient alignment method using tactile array sensors that can measure the distributed pressure profiles along the contact surface. The TactArray system includes one sensor, a signal-conditioning device (USB drive/interface electronics, power supply, and cables), and a PC. The tactile array sensor was placed between the patient's back and the treatment couch, and the deformations at different location on the patient's back were evaluated. Three healthy male volunteers were enrolled in this study, and pressure profile distributions (PPDs) were obtained with and without immobilization. After the initial pretreatment setup using the laser alignment system, the PPD of the patient's back was acquired. The results were obtained at four different times and included a reference PPD dataset. The contact area and the center-of-pressure value were also acquired based on the PPD data for a more elaborate quantitative data analysis. To evaluate the clinical feasibility of using the proposed alignment method for reducing the deformation error, we implemented a real-time self-correction procedure. Despite the initial alignment, we confirmed that PPD variations existed in both cases of the volunteer studies (with and without the use of the immobilization tool). Additionally, we confirmed that the contact area and the center of pressure varied in both cases, and those variations were observed in all three volunteers. With the proposed alignment method and the real-time selfcorrection procedure, the deformation error was significantly reduced. The proposed alignment method can be used to account for the limitation of

  12. Tactile allodynia in patients with lumbar radicular pain (sciatica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defrin, Ruth; Devor, Marshall; Brill, Silviu

    2014-12-01

    We report a novel symptom in many patients with low back pain (LBP) that sheds new light on the underlying pain mechanism. By means of quantitative sensory testing, we compared patients with radicular LBP (sciatica), axial LBP (LBP without radiation into the leg), and healthy controls, searching for cutaneous allodynia in response to weak tactile and cooling stimuli on the leg and low back. Most patients with radicular pain (~60%) reported static and dynamic tactile allodynia, as well as cooling allodynia, on the leg, often extending into the foot. Some also reported allodynia on the low back. In axial LBP, allodynia was almost exclusively on the back. The degree of dynamic tactile allodynia correlated with the degree of background pain. The presence of allodynia suggests that the peripheral nerve generators of background leg and back pain have also induced central sensitization. The distal (foot) location of the allodynia in patients who have it indicates that the nociceptive drive that maintains the central sensitization arises paraspinally (ectopically) in injured ventral ramus afferents; this is not an instance of somatic referred pain. The presence of central sensitization also provides the first cogent account of shooting pain in sciatica as a wave of activity sweeping vectorially across the width of the sensitized dorsal horn. Finally, the results endorse leg allodynia as a pain biomarker in animal research on LBP, which is commonly used but has not been previously validated. In addition to informing the underlying mechanism of LBP, bedside mapping of allodynia might have practical implications for prognosis and treatment. How can you tell whether pain radiating into the leg in a patient with sciatica is neuropathic, ie, due to nerve injury? Copyright © 2014 International Association for the Study of Pain. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Kinesthetic information facilitates saccades towards proprioceptive-tactile targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voudouris, Dimitris; Goettker, Alexander; Mueller, Stefanie; Fiehler, Katja

    2016-05-01

    Saccades to somatosensory targets have longer latencies and are less accurate and precise than saccades to visual targets. Here we examined how different somatosensory information influences the planning and control of saccadic eye movements. Participants fixated a central cross and initiated a saccade as fast as possible in response to a tactile stimulus that was presented to either the index or the middle fingertip of their unseen left hand. In a static condition, the hand remained at a target location for the entire block of trials and the stimulus was presented at a fixed time after an auditory tone. Therefore, the target location was derived only from proprioceptive and tactile information. In a moving condition, the hand was first actively moved to the same target location and the stimulus was then presented immediately. Thus, in the moving condition additional kinesthetic information about the target location was available. We found shorter saccade latencies in the moving compared to the static condition, but no differences in accuracy or precision of saccadic endpoints. In a second experiment, we introduced variable delays after the auditory tone (static condition) or after the end of the hand movement (moving condition) in order to reduce the predictability of the moment of the stimulation and to allow more time to process the kinesthetic information. Again, we found shorter latencies in the moving compared to the static condition but no improvement in saccade accuracy or precision. In a third experiment, we showed that the shorter saccade latencies in the moving condition cannot be explained by the temporal proximity between the relevant event (auditory tone or end of hand movement) and the moment of the stimulation. Our findings suggest that kinesthetic information facilitates planning, but not control, of saccadic eye movements to proprioceptive-tactile targets. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Beats, Flesh, and Grain : Sonic Tactility and Affect in Electronic Dance Music

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Garcia, Luis-Manuel

    2015-01-01

    This essay sets out to explore the tactilization of sound in electronic dance music (EDM), which offers an important sensory-affective bridge between touch, sonic experience, and an expansive sense of connection in dancing crowds. EDM events tend to engender spaces of heightened tactility and

  15. Sensory Responsiveness and the Effects of Equal Subjective Rewards on Tactile Learning and Memory of Honeybees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheiner, Ricarda; Kuritz-Kaiser, Anthea; Menzel, Randolf; Erber, Joachim

    2005-01-01

    In tactile learning, sucrose is the unconditioned stimulus and reward, which is usually applied to the antenna to elicit proboscis extension and which the bee can drink when it is subsequently applied to the extended proboscis. The conditioned stimulus is a tactile object that the bee can scan with its antennae. In this paper we describe the…

  16. Guidelines for the use of vibro-tactile displays in human computer interaction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erp, J.B.F. van

    2002-01-01

    Vibro-tactile displays convey messages by presenting vibration to the user's skin. In recent years, the interest in and application of vibro-tactile displays is growing. Vibratory displays are introduced in mobile devices, desktop applications and even in aircraft [1]. Despite the growing interest,

  17. Braille and Tactile Graphics: Youths with Visual Impairments Share Their Experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenblum, L. Penny; Herzberg, Tina S.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Data were collected from youths with visual impairment about their experiences with tactile graphics and braille materials used in mathematics and science classes. Methods: Youths answered questions and explored four tactile graphics made using different production methods. They located specific information on each graphic and shared…

  18. Recruitment of the middle temporal area by tactile motion in congenital blindness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ptito, Maurice; Matteau, Isabelle; Gjedde, Albert

    2009-01-01

    We used positron emission tomography to investigate whether tactile motion discrimination activates the dorsal visual stream in congenitally blind (CB) participants compared with sighted controls. The tactile stimuli consisted of either static dots, dots moving coherently in one of two possible...

  19. Audio-tactile stimulation: A tool to improve health and well-being?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dijk, E.O.; Nijholt, A.; Erp, J.B.F. van; Wolferen, G. van; Kuyper, E.

    2013-01-01

    Stimulation of the tactile sense or the hearing sense can be used to improve a person's health and well-being. For example, to make someone relax, feel better or sleep better. In this position paper, we present the concept of auditory-tactile stimulation for health and well-being. Through carefully

  20. How Do Batters Use Visual, Auditory, and Tactile Information about the Success of a Baseball Swing?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Rob

    2009-01-01

    Bat/ball contact produces visual (the ball leaving the bat), auditory (the "crack" of the bat), and tactile (bat vibration) feedback about the success of the swing. We used a batting simulation to investigate how college baseball players use visual, tactile, and auditory feedback. In Experiment 1, swing accuracy (i.e., the lateral separation…

  1. Tactile acuity is disrupted in osteoarthritis but is unrelated to disruptions in motor imagery performance.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stanton, T.R.; Lin, C.W.; Bray, H.; Smeets, R.J.P.; Taylor, D.; Law, R.Y.; Moseley, G.L.

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine whether tactile acuity is disrupted in people with knee OA and to determine whether tactile acuity, a clinical signature of primary sensory cortex representation, is related to motor imagery performance (MIP; evaluates working body schema) and pain. METHODS: Experiment 1:

  2. Vestibulo-tactile interactions regarding motion perception and eye movements in yaw

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bos, J.E.; Erp, J.B.F. van; Groen, E.L.; Veen, H.J. van

    2005-01-01

    This paper shows that tactile stimulation can override vestibular information regarding spinning sensations and eye movements. However, we conclude that the current data do not support the hypothesis that tactile stimulation controls eye movements directly. To this end, twenty-four subjects were

  3. Presentation of Various Tactile Sensations Using Micro-Needle Electrotactile Display.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayuko Tezuka

    Full Text Available Tactile displays provoke tactile sensations by artificially stimulating tactile receptors. While many types of tactile displays have been developed, electrotactile displays that exploit electric stimulation can be designed to be thin, light, flexible and thus, wearable. However, the high voltages required to stimulate tactile receptors and limited varieties of possible sensations pose problems. In our previous work, we developed an electrotactile display using a micro-needle electrode array that can drastically reduce the required voltage by penetrating through the high-impedance stratum corneum painlessly, but displaying various tactile sensations was still a challenge. In this work, we demonstrate presentation of tactile sensation of different roughness to the subjects, which is enabled by the arrangement of the electrodes; the needle electrodes are on the fingertip and the ground electrode is on the fingernail. With this arrangement, the display can stimulate the tactile receptors that are located not only in the shallow regions of the finger but also those in the deep regions. It was experimentally revealed that the required voltage was further reduced compared to previous devices and that the roughness presented by the display was controlled by the pulse frequency and the switching time, or the stimulation flow rate. The proposed electrotactile display is readily applicable as a new wearable haptic device for advanced information communication technology.

  4. Weber's Illusion and Body Shape: Anisotropy of Tactile Size Perception on the Hand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R.; Haggard, Patrick

    2011-01-01

    The perceived distance between touches on a single skin surface is larger on regions of high tactile sensitivity than those with lower acuity, an effect known as "Weber's illusion". This illusion suggests that tactile size perception involves a representation of the perceived size of body parts preserving characteristics of the somatosensory…

  5. Evidence for embodied predictive coding: the anterior insula coordinates cortical processing of tactile deviancy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Allen, Micah; Fardo, Francesca; Dietz, Martin

    2015-01-01

    this possibility in the somatosensory domain, we measured brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging while healthy participants discriminated tactile stimuli in a roving oddball design. Dynamic Causal Modelling revealed that unexpected stimuli increased the strength of forward connections...... processing of tactile changes to support body awareness....

  6. Participation of Parents in the Early Exploration of Tactile Graphics by Children Who Are Visually Impaired

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryles, Ruby; Bell, Edward

    2009-01-01

    Seventy-three children with visual impairments aged 2-10 and their parents participated in a project that examined the children's interest in and exploration of tactile graphics. The parents reported that the children's interest in and conceptual understanding of the project's tactile workbook were high and that the children explored the…

  7. Perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli depends on perceived speed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alice eTomassini

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available It is known that the perceived duration of visual stimuli is strongly influenced by speed: faster moving stimuli appear to last longer. To test whether this is a general property of sensory systems we asked participants to reproduce the duration of visual and tactile gratings, and visuo-tactile gratings moving at a variable speed (3.5 – 15 cm/s for three different durations (400, 600 and 800 ms. For both modalities, the apparent duration of the stimulus increased strongly with stimulus speed, more so for tactile than for visual stimuli. In addition, visual stimuli were perceived to last approximately 200 ms longer than tactile stimuli. The apparent duration of visuo-tactile stimuli lay between the unimodal estimates, as the Bayesian account predicts, but the bimodal precision of the reproduction did not show the theoretical improvement. A cross-modal speed-matching task revealed that visual stimuli were perceived to move faster than tactile stimuli. To test whether the large difference in the perceived duration of visual and tactile stimuli resulted from the difference in their perceived speed, we repeated the time reproduction task with visual and tactile stimuli matched in apparent speed. This reduced, but did not completely eliminate the difference in apparent duration. These results show that for both vision and touch, perceived duration depends on speed, pointing to common strategies of time perception.

  8. Cassini Scientist for a Day: a tactile experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canas, L.; Altobelli, N.

    2012-09-01

    In September 2011, the Cassini spacecraft took images of three targets and a challenge was launched to all students: to choose the one target they thought would provide the best science and to write an essay explaining their reasons (more information on the "Cassini Scientist for a Day" essay contest official webpage in: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/education/scientistforaday10thedition/, run by NASA/JPL) The three targets presented were: Hyperion, Rhea and Titan, and Saturn. The idea behind "Cassini Scientist for a Day: a tactile experience" was to transform each of these images into schematic tactile images, highlighting relevant features apprehended through a tactile key, accompanied by a small text in Braille with some additional information. This initial approach would allow reach a broader community of students, more specifically those with visual impairment disabilities. Through proper implementation and careful study cases the adapted images associated with an explanatory key provide more resources in tactile astronomy. As the 2012 edition approaches a new set of targeted objet images will be once again transformed and adapted to visually impaired students and will aim to reach more students into participate in this international competition and to engage them in a quest to expand their knowledge in the amazing Cassini discoveries and the wonders of Saturn and its moons. As the winning essays will be published on the Cassini website and contest winners invited to participate in a dedicated teleconference with Cassini scientists from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, this initiative presents a great chance to all visually impaired students and teachers to participate in an exciting experience. These initiatives must be complemented with further information to strengthen the learning experience. However they stand as a good starting point to tackle further astronomical concepts in the classroom, especially this field that sometimes lacks the resources. Although

  9. Tactile Sensing From Laser-Ablated Metallized PET Films

    KAUST Repository

    Nag, Anindya

    2016-10-17

    This paper reports the design, fabrication, and implementation of a novel sensor patch developed from commercial polyethylene terephthalate films metallized with aluminum on one side. The aluminum was ablated with laser to form interdigitated electrodes to make sensor prototypes. The interdigitated electrodes were patterned on the substrate with a laser cutter. Characterization of the prototypes was done to determine their operating frequency followed by experimentation. The prototypes have been used as a tactile sensor showing promising results for using these patches in applications with contact pressures considerably lesser than normal human contact pressure.

  10. A microfabricated strain gauge array on polymer substrate for tactile neuroprostheses in rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beygi, M; Mutlu, S; Güçlü, B

    2016-01-01

    In this study, we present the design, microfabrication and characterization of a tactile sensor system which can be used for sensory neuroprostheses in rats. The sensor system consists of an array of 2  ×  7 cells, each of which has a series combination of four strain gauges. Each group of four strain gauges is placed around a square membrane with a size of 2.5  ×  2.5 mm 2 . Unlike most common tactile sensors based on silicon substrates, we used 3D-printed polylactic acid as a substrate, because it is not brittle, and under local extremes, it would prevent the catastrophic failure of all cells. The strain gauges were fabricated by depositing and patterning a 50 nm thick aluminum (Al) film on a polyimide sheet with a thickness of 0.125 mm. Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) elastomer was bonded on the top surface of the PI membrane. The PDMS layer was prepared in two different thicknesses, 1.2 and 1.7 mm, to investigate its effect on the static response of the sensor. The sensitivity and the maximum allowable force, corresponding to the maximum deformation of 0.9 mm at the center of each cell, changed based on the thickness of the PDMS layer. Sensor cells operated linearly up to 3 N with an average sensitivity of 200 mΩ N −1 (0.7 Ω mm −1 ) for 1.2 mm thick PDMS. These values changed to 4 N and 70 mΩ N −1 (0.3 Ω mm −1 ), respectively, for 1.7 mm thick PDMS. The nonlinearity was less than 3%. The cells had low cross-talk (∼5 mΩ N −1 and 0.02 Ω mm −1 ) relative to the average sensitivity. Additionally, the dynamic response of the sensor was characterized at several frequencies by using a vibrotactile stimulation system previously designed for psychophysics experiments. The sensor was also tested inside the rat conditioning chamber to demonstrate the relevant signals in a tactile neuroprosthesis. (paper)

  11. A microfabricated strain gauge array on polymer substrate for tactile neuroprostheses in rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beygi, M.; Mutlu, S.; Güçlü, B.

    2016-08-01

    In this study, we present the design, microfabrication and characterization of a tactile sensor system which can be used for sensory neuroprostheses in rats. The sensor system consists of an array of 2  ×  7 cells, each of which has a series combination of four strain gauges. Each group of four strain gauges is placed around a square membrane with a size of 2.5  ×  2.5 mm2. Unlike most common tactile sensors based on silicon substrates, we used 3D-printed polylactic acid as a substrate, because it is not brittle, and under local extremes, it would prevent the catastrophic failure of all cells. The strain gauges were fabricated by depositing and patterning a 50 nm thick aluminum (Al) film on a polyimide sheet with a thickness of 0.125 mm. Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) elastomer was bonded on the top surface of the PI membrane. The PDMS layer was prepared in two different thicknesses, 1.2 and 1.7 mm, to investigate its effect on the static response of the sensor. The sensitivity and the maximum allowable force, corresponding to the maximum deformation of 0.9 mm at the center of each cell, changed based on the thickness of the PDMS layer. Sensor cells operated linearly up to 3 N with an average sensitivity of 200 mΩ N-1 (0.7 Ω mm-1) for 1.2 mm thick PDMS. These values changed to 4 N and 70 mΩ N-1 (0.3 Ω mm-1), respectively, for 1.7 mm thick PDMS. The nonlinearity was less than 3%. The cells had low cross-talk (~5 mΩ N-1 and 0.02 Ω mm-1) relative to the average sensitivity. Additionally, the dynamic response of the sensor was characterized at several frequencies by using a vibrotactile stimulation system previously designed for psychophysics experiments. The sensor was also tested inside the rat conditioning chamber to demonstrate the relevant signals in a tactile neuroprosthesis.

  12. Development and Analysis of New 3D Tactile Materials for the Enhancement of STEM Education for the Blind and Visually Impaired

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzales, Ashleigh

    Blind and visually impaired individuals have historically demonstrated a low participation in the fields of science, engineering, mathematics, and technology (STEM). This low participation is reflected in both their education and career choices. Despite the establishment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), blind and visually impaired (BVI) students continue to academically fall below the level of their sighted peers in the areas of science and math. Although this deficit is created by many factors, this study focuses on the lack of adequate accessible image based materials. Traditional methods for creating accessible image materials for the vision impaired have included detailed verbal descriptions accompanying an image or conversion into a simplified tactile graphic. It is very common that no substitute materials will be provided to students within STEM courses because they are image rich disciplines and often include a large number images, diagrams and charts. Additionally, images that are translated into text or simplified into basic line drawings are frequently inadequate because they rely on the interpretations of resource personnel who do not have expertise in STEM. Within this study, a method to create a new type of tactile 3D image was developed using High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) and Computer Numeric Control (CNC) milling. These tactile image boards preserve high levels of detail when compared to the original print image. To determine the discernibility and effectiveness of tactile images, these customizable boards were tested in various university classrooms as well as in participation studies which included BVI and sighted students. Results from these studies indicate that tactile images are discernable and were found to improve performance in lab exercises as much as 60% for those with visual impairment. Incorporating tactile HDPE 3D images into a classroom setting was shown to

  13. Independent Attention Mechanisms Control the Activation of Tactile and Visual Working Memory Representations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Eimer, Martin

    2018-05-01

    Working memory (WM) is limited in capacity, but it is controversial whether these capacity limitations are domain-general or are generated independently within separate modality-specific memory systems. These alternative accounts were tested in bimodal visual/tactile WM tasks. In Experiment 1, participants memorized the locations of simultaneously presented task-relevant visual and tactile stimuli. Visual and tactile WM load was manipulated independently (one, two, or three items per modality), and one modality was unpredictably tested after each trial. To track the activation of visual and tactile WM representations during the retention interval, the visual contralateral delay activity (CDA) and tactile CDA (tCDA) were measured over visual and somatosensory cortex, respectively. CDA and tCDA amplitudes were selectively affected by WM load in the corresponding (tactile or visual) modality. The CDA parametrically increased when visual load increased from one to two and to three items. The tCDA was enhanced when tactile load increased from one to two items and showed no further enhancement for three tactile items. Critically, these load effects were strictly modality-specific, as substantiated by Bayesian statistics. Increasing tactile load did not affect the visual CDA, and increasing visual load did not modulate the tCDA. Task performance at memory test was also unaffected by WM load in the other (untested) modality. This was confirmed in a second behavioral experiment where tactile and visual loads were either two or four items, unimodal baseline conditions were included, and participants performed a color change detection task in the visual modality. These results show that WM capacity is not limited by a domain-general mechanism that operates across sensory modalities. They suggest instead that WM storage is mediated by distributed modality-specific control mechanisms that are activated independently and in parallel during multisensory WM.

  14. Tactile communication, cooperation, and performance: an ethological study of the NBA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraus, Michael W; Huang, Cassey; Keltner, Dacher

    2010-10-01

    Tactile communication, or physical touch, promotes cooperation between people, communicates distinct emotions, soothes in times of stress, and is used to make inferences of warmth and trust. Based on this conceptual analysis, we predicted that in group competition, physical touch would predict increases in both individual and group performance. In an ethological study, we coded the touch behavior of players from the National Basketball Association (NBA) during the 2008-2009 regular season. Consistent with hypotheses, early season touch predicted greater performance for individuals as well as teams later in the season. Additional analyses confirmed that touch predicted improved performance even after accounting for player status, preseason expectations, and early season performance. Moreover, coded cooperative behaviors between teammates explained the association between touch and team performance. Discussion focused on the contributions touch makes to cooperative groups and the potential implications for other group settings. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).

  15. [Affective behavioural responses by dogs to tactile human-dog interactions].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhne, Franziska; Hössler, Johanna C; Struwe, Rainer

    2012-01-01

    The communication of dogs is based on complex, subtle body postures and facial expressions. Some social interaction between dogs includes physical contact. Humans generally use both verbal and tactile signals to communicate with dogs. Hence, interaction between humans and dogs might lead to conflicts because the behavioural responses of dogs to human-dog interaction may be misinterpreted and wrongly assessed. The behavioural responses of dogs to tactile human-dog interactions and human gestures are the focus of this study. The participating dogs (n = 47) were privately owned pets.They were of varying breed and gender.The test consisted of nine randomised test sequences (e. g. petting the dog's head or chest). A test sequence was performed for a period of 30 seconds. The inter-trial interval was set at 60 seconds and the test-retest interval was set at 10 minutes. The frequency and duration of the dogs'behavioural responses were recorded using INTERACT. To examine the behavioural responses of the dogs, a two-way analysis of variance within the linear mixed models procedure of IBM SPSS Statistics 19 was conducted. A significant influence of the test-sequenc order on the dogs' behaviour could be analysed for appeasement gestures (F8,137 = 2.42; p = 0.018), redirected behaviour (F8,161 = 6.31; p = 0.012) and socio-positive behaviour (F8,148 = 6.28; p = 0.012). The behavioural responses of the dogs, which were considered as displacement activities (F8,109 = 2.5; p = 0.014) differed significantly among the test sequences. The response of the dogs, measured as gestures of appeasement, redirected behaviours, and displacement activities, was most obvious during petting around the head and near the paws.The results of this study conspicuously indicate that dogs respond to tactile human-dog interactions with gestures of appeasement and displacement activities. Redirected behaviours, socio-positive behaviours as well displacement activities are behavioural responses which dogs

  16. Visual Sensory Signals Dominate Tactile Cues during Docked Feeding in Hummingbirds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goller, Benjamin; Segre, Paolo S; Middleton, Kevin M; Dickinson, Michael H; Altshuler, Douglas L

    2017-01-01

    Animals living in and interacting with natural environments must monitor and respond to changing conditions and unpredictable situations. Using information from multiple sensory systems allows them to modify their behavior in response to their dynamic environment but also creates the challenge of integrating different, and potentially contradictory, sources of information for behavior control. Understanding how multiple information streams are integrated to produce flexible and reliable behavior is key to understanding how behavior is controlled in natural settings. Natural settings are rarely still, which challenges animals that require precise body position control, like hummingbirds, which hover while feeding from flowers. Tactile feedback, available only once the hummingbird is docked at the flower, could provide additional information to help maintain its position at the flower. To investigate the role of tactile information for hovering control during feeding, we first asked whether hummingbirds physically interact with a feeder once docked. We quantified physical interactions between docked hummingbirds and a feeder placed in front of a stationary background pattern. Force sensors on the feeder measured a complex time course of loading that reflects the wingbeat frequency and bill movement of feeding hummingbirds, and suggests that they sometimes push against the feeder with their bill. Next, we asked whether the measured tactile interactions were used by feeding hummingbirds to maintain position relative to the feeder. We created two experimental scenarios-one in which the feeder was stationary and the visual background moved and the other where the feeder moved laterally in front of a white background. When the visual background pattern moved, docked hummingbirds pushed significantly harder in the direction of horizontal visual motion. When the feeder moved, and the background was stationary, hummingbirds generated aerodynamic force in the opposite

  17. Tactile memory of deaf-blind adults on four tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Paul; Heiron, Karen

    2002-02-01

    The performance of ten deaf-blind and ten sighted-hearing participants on four tactile memory tasks was investigated. Recognition and recall memory tasks and a matching pairs game were used. It was hypothesized that deaf-blind participants would be superior on each task. Performance was measured in terms of the time taken, and the number of items correctly recalled. In Experiments 1 and 2, which measured recognition memory in terms of the time taken to remember target items, the hypothesis was supported, but not by the length of time taken to recognize the target items, or for the number of target items correctly identified. The hypothesis was supported by Experiment 3, which measured recall memory, with regard to time taken to complete some of the tasks but not for the number of correctly recalled positions. Experiment 4, which used the matching pairs game, supported the hypothesis in terms of both time taken and the number of moves required. It is concluded that the deaf-blind people's tactile encoding is more efficient than that of sighted-hearing people, and that it is probable that their storage and retrieval are normal.

  18. Using tactile features to help functionally blind individuals denominate banknotes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederman, Susan J; Hamilton, Cheryl

    2002-01-01

    This study, which was conducted for the Bank of Canada, assessed the feasibility of presenting a raised texture feature together with a tactile denomination code on the next Canadian banknote series ($5, $10, $20, $50, and $100). Adding information accessible by hand would permit functionally blind individuals to independently denominate banknotes. In Experiment 1, 20 blindfolded, sighted university students denominated a set of 8 alternate tactile feature designs. Across the 8 design series, the proportion of correct responses never fell below .97; the mean response time per banknote ranged from 11.4 to 13.1 s. In Experiment 2, 27 functionally blind participants denominated 4 of the previous 8 candidate sets of banknotes. The proportion of correct responses never fell below .92; the corresponding mean response time per banknote ranged from 11.7 to 13.0 s. The Bank of Canada selected one of the four raised-texture designs for inclusion on its new banknote series. Other potential applications include designing haptic displays for teleoperation and virtual environment systems.

  19. A Cross-Platform Tactile Capabilities Interface for Humanoid Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie eMa

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This article presents the core elements of a cross-platform tactile capabilities interface (TCI for humanoid arms. The aim of the interface is to reduce the cost of developing humanoid robot capabilities by supporting reuse through cross-platform deployment. The article presents a comparative analysis of existing robot middleware frameworks, as well as the technical details of the TCI framework that builds on the the existing YARP platform. The TCI framework currently includes robot arm actuators with robot skin sensors. It presents such hardware in a platform independent manner, making it possible to write robot control software that can be executed on different robots through the TCI frameworks. The TCI framework supports multiple humanoid platforms and this article also presents a case study of a cross-platform implementation of a set of tactile protective withdrawal reflexes that have been realised on both the Nao and iCub humanoid robot platforms using the same high-level source code.

  20. Tactile and bone-conduction auditory brain computer interface for vision and hearing impaired users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutkowski, Tomasz M; Mori, Hiromu

    2015-04-15

    The paper presents a report on the recently developed BCI alternative for users suffering from impaired vision (lack of focus or eye-movements) or from the so-called "ear-blocking-syndrome" (limited hearing). We report on our recent studies of the extents to which vibrotactile stimuli delivered to the head of a user can serve as a platform for a brain computer interface (BCI) paradigm. In the proposed tactile and bone-conduction auditory BCI novel multiple head positions are used to evoke combined somatosensory and auditory (via the bone conduction effect) P300 brain responses, in order to define a multimodal tactile and bone-conduction auditory brain computer interface (tbcaBCI). In order to further remove EEG interferences and to improve P300 response classification synchrosqueezing transform (SST) is applied. SST outperforms the classical time-frequency analysis methods of the non-linear and non-stationary signals such as EEG. The proposed method is also computationally more effective comparing to the empirical mode decomposition. The SST filtering allows for online EEG preprocessing application which is essential in the case of BCI. Experimental results with healthy BCI-naive users performing online tbcaBCI, validate the paradigm, while the feasibility of the concept is illuminated through information transfer rate case studies. We present a comparison of the proposed SST-based preprocessing method, combined with a logistic regression (LR) classifier, together with classical preprocessing and LDA-based classification BCI techniques. The proposed tbcaBCI paradigm together with data-driven preprocessing methods are a step forward in robust BCI applications research. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Escaping blood-fed malaria mosquitoes minimize tactile detection without compromising on take-off speed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muijres, F T; Chang, S W; van Veen, W G; Spitzen, J; Biemans, B T; Koehl, M A R; Dudley, R

    2017-10-15

    To escape after taking a blood meal, a mosquito must exert forces sufficiently high to take off when carrying a load roughly equal to its body weight, while simultaneously avoiding detection by minimizing tactile signals exerted on the host's skin. We studied this trade-off between escape speed and stealth in the malaria mosquito Anopheles coluzzii using 3D motion analysis of high-speed stereoscopic videos of mosquito take-offs and aerodynamic modeling. We found that during the push-off phase, mosquitoes enhanced take-off speed using aerodynamic forces generated by the beating wings in addition to leg-based push-off forces, whereby wing forces contributed 61% of the total push-off force. Exchanging leg-derived push-off forces for wing-derived aerodynamic forces allows the animal to reduce peak force production on the host's skin. By slowly extending their long legs throughout the push-off, mosquitoes spread push-off forces over a longer time window than insects with short legs, thereby further reducing peak leg forces. Using this specialized take-off behavior, mosquitoes are capable of reaching take-off speeds comparable to those of similarly sized fruit flies, but with weight-normalized peak leg forces that were only 27% of those of the fruit flies. By limiting peak leg forces, mosquitoes possibly reduce the chance of being detected by the host. The resulting combination of high take-off speed and low tactile signals on the host might help increase the mosquito's success in escaping from blood-hosts, which consequently also increases the chance of transmitting vector-borne diseases, such as malaria, to future hosts. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  2. Tactile pavement for guiding walking direction: An assessment of heading direction and gait stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pluijter, Nanda; de Wit, Lieke P W; Bruijn, Sjoerd M; Plaisier, Myrthe A

    2015-10-01

    For maintaining heading direction while walking we heavily rely on vision. Therefore, walking in the absence of vision or with visual attention directed elsewhere potentially leads to dangerous situations. Here we investigated whether tactile information from the feet can be used as a (partial) substitute for vision in maintaining a stable heading direction. If so, participants should be better able to keep a constant heading direction on tactile pavement that indicates directionality than on regular flat pavement. However, such a pavement may also be destabilizing. Thus we asked participants to walk straight ahead on regular pavement, and on tactile pavement (tiles with ridges along the walking direction) while varying the amount of vision. We assessed the effects of the type of pavement as well as the amount of vision on the variability of the heading direction as well as gait stability. Both of these measures were calculated from accelerations and angular velocities recorded from a smartphone attached to the participants trunk. Results showed that on tactile pavement participants had a less variations in their heading direction than on regular pavement. The drawback, however, was that the tactile pavement used in this study decreased gait stability. In sum, tactile pavement can be used as a partial substitute for vision in maintaining heading direction, but it can also decrease gait stability. Future work should focus on designing tactile pavement that does provided directional clues, but is less destabilizing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Exploring potential social influences on brain potentials during anticipation of tactile stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Guannan; Saby, Joni N; Drew, Ashley R; Marshall, Peter J

    2017-03-15

    This study explored interpersonal influences on electrophysiological responses during the anticipation of tactile stimulation. It is well-known that broad, negative-going potentials are present in the event-related potential (ERP) between a forewarning cue and a tactile stimulus. It has also been shown that the alpha-range mu rhythm shows a lateralized desynchronization over central electrode sites during anticipation of tactile stimulation of the hand. The current study used a tactile discrimination task in which a visual cue signaled that an upcoming stimulus would either be delivered 1500ms later to the participant's hand, to a task partner's hand, or to neither person. For the condition in which participants anticipated the tactile stimulation to their own hand, a negative potential (contingent negative variation, CNV) was observed in the ERP at central sites in the 1000ms prior to the tactile stimulus. Significant mu rhythm desynchronization was also present in the same time window. The magnitudes of the ERPs and of the mu desynchronization were greater in the contralateral than in the ipsilateral hemisphere prior to right hand stimulation. Similar ERP and EEG changes were not present when the visual cue indicated that stimulation would be delivered to the task partner or to neither person. The absence of social influences during anticipation of tactile stimulation, and the relationship between the two brain signatures of anticipatory attention (CNV and mu rhythm) are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Effectiveness of auditory and tactile crossmodal cues in a dual-task visual and auditory scenario.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopkins, Kevin; Kass, Steven J; Blalock, Lisa Durrance; Brill, J Christopher

    2017-05-01

    In this study, we examined how spatially informative auditory and tactile cues affected participants' performance on a visual search task while they simultaneously performed a secondary auditory task. Visual search task performance was assessed via reaction time and accuracy. Tactile and auditory cues provided the approximate location of the visual target within the search display. The inclusion of tactile and auditory cues improved performance in comparison to the no-cue baseline conditions. In comparison to the no-cue conditions, both tactile and auditory cues resulted in faster response times in the visual search only (single task) and visual-auditory (dual-task) conditions. However, the effectiveness of auditory and tactile cueing for visual task accuracy was shown to be dependent on task-type condition. Crossmodal cueing remains a viable strategy for improving task performance without increasing attentional load within a singular sensory modality. Practitioner Summary: Crossmodal cueing with dual-task performance has not been widely explored, yet has practical applications. We examined the effects of auditory and tactile crossmodal cues on visual search performance, with and without a secondary auditory task. Tactile cues aided visual search accuracy when also engaged in a secondary auditory task, whereas auditory cues did not.

  5. When Content Matters: The Role of Processing Code in Tactile Display Design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferris, Thomas K; Sarter, Nadine

    2010-01-01

    The distribution of tasks and stimuli across multiple modalities has been proposed as a means to support multitasking in data-rich environments. Recently, the tactile channel and, more specifically, communication via the use of tactile/haptic icons have received considerable interest. Past research has examined primarily the impact of concurrent task modality on the effectiveness of tactile information presentation. However, it is not well known to what extent the interpretation of iconic tactile patterns is affected by another attribute of information: the information processing codes of concurrent tasks. In two driving simulation studies (n = 25 for each), participants decoded icons composed of either spatial or nonspatial patterns of vibrations (engaging spatial and nonspatial processing code resources, respectively) while concurrently interpreting spatial or nonspatial visual task stimuli. As predicted by Multiple Resource Theory, performance was significantly worse (approximately 5-10 percent worse) when the tactile icons and visual tasks engaged the same processing code, with the overall worst performance in the spatial-spatial task pairing. The findings from these studies contribute to an improved understanding of information processing and can serve as input to multidimensional quantitative models of timesharing performance. From an applied perspective, the results suggest that competition for processing code resources warrants consideration, alongside other factors such as the naturalness of signal-message mapping, when designing iconic tactile displays. Nonspatially encoded tactile icons may be preferable in environments which already rely heavily on spatial processing, such as car cockpits.

  6. Feeling music: integration of auditory and tactile inputs in musical meter perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Juan; Gamble, Darik; Sarnlertsophon, Kristine; Wang, Xiaoqin; Hsiao, Steven

    2012-01-01

    Musicians often say that they not only hear, but also "feel" music. To explore the contribution of tactile information in "feeling" musical rhythm, we investigated the degree that auditory and tactile inputs are integrated in humans performing a musical meter recognition task. Subjects discriminated between two types of sequences, 'duple' (march-like rhythms) and 'triple' (waltz-like rhythms) presented in three conditions: 1) Unimodal inputs (auditory or tactile alone), 2) Various combinations of bimodal inputs, where sequences were distributed between the auditory and tactile channels such that a single channel did not produce coherent meter percepts, and 3) Simultaneously presented bimodal inputs where the two channels contained congruent or incongruent meter cues. We first show that meter is perceived similarly well (70%-85%) when tactile or auditory cues are presented alone. We next show in the bimodal experiments that auditory and tactile cues are integrated to produce coherent meter percepts. Performance is high (70%-90%) when all of the metrically important notes are assigned to one channel and is reduced to 60% when half of these notes are assigned to one channel. When the important notes are presented simultaneously to both channels, congruent cues enhance meter recognition (90%). Performance drops dramatically when subjects were presented with incongruent auditory cues (10%), as opposed to incongruent tactile cues (60%), demonstrating that auditory input dominates meter perception. We believe that these results are the first demonstration of cross-modal sensory grouping between any two senses.

  7. Contextual cueing of tactile search is coded in an anatomical reference frame.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assumpção, Leonardo; Shi, Zhuanghua; Zang, Xuelian; Müller, Hermann J; Geyer, Thomas

    2018-04-01

    This work investigates the reference frame(s) underlying tactile context memory, a form of statistical learning in a tactile (finger) search task. In this task, if a searched-for target object is repeatedly encountered within a stable spatial arrangement of task-irrelevant distractors, detecting the target becomes more efficient over time (relative to nonrepeated arrangements), as learned target-distractor spatial associations come to guide tactile search, thus cueing attention to the target location. Since tactile search displays can be represented in several reference frames, including multiple external and an anatomical frame, in Experiment 1 we asked whether repeated search displays are represented in tactile memory with reference to an environment-centered or anatomical reference frame. In Experiment 2, we went on examining a hand-centered versus anatomical reference frame of tactile context memory. Observers performed a tactile search task, divided into a learning and test session. At the transition between the two sessions, we introduced postural manipulations of the hands (crossed ↔ uncrossed in Expt. 1; palm-up ↔ palm-down in Expt. 2) to determine the reference frame of tactile contextual cueing. In both experiments, target-distractor associations acquired during learning transferred to the test session when the placement of the target and distractors was held constant in anatomical, but not external, coordinates. In the latter, RTs were even slower for repeated displays. We conclude that tactile contextual learning is coded in an anatomical reference frame. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Use of early tactile stimulation in rehabilitation of digital nerve injuries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, A S

    2000-01-01

    Digital nerves are the most frequently injured peripheral nerve. To improve the recovery of functional sensibility of digital nerve injuries, a prospective randomized controlled study was conducted to see the effect of using early tactile stimulation in rehabilitation of digital nerve injuries. Two specific tactile stimulators were made and prescribed for patients with digital nerve-injury. Twenty-four participants with 32 digital nerve injuries received the prescribed tactile stimulators (experimental group), and another 25 participants with 33 digital nerve injuries received only routine conventional therapy (control group). A significant difference (p sensibility in digital nerve injuries without combined nerve, tendon, and bone injuries.

  9. [Advances in the research of function of Merkel cells in tactile formation of skin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, X; Wei, Z R

    2018-01-20

    Skin is the largest sense organ of human, with many mechanoreceptor cells under epidermis or dermis of skin and Merkel cell is one of them. It has been confirmed that Merkel cells play an important role in the process of mechanical transmission of mammalian soft tactile stimulation. Researches showed that Merkel cells had close relation to tactile formation and functioned by Merkel cell-neurite complexes and ion channels Piezo2. This article reviews Merkel cells and the function, problem and prospect of Merkel cells in tactile formation.

  10. Tactile Architectural Models as Universal ‘Urban Furniture’

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kłopotowska, Agnieszka

    2017-10-01

    Tactile architectural models and maquettes have been built in the external public spaces of Polish cities since the latter half of the 00s of the 21st century. These objects are designed for the blind, but also other people - tourists, children, and those who arrive in wheelchairs. This collection has got currently more than 70 implements, which places Poland in the group of European leaders. Unfortunately, this “furniture”, is not always “convenient” and safe for all recipients. Studies, which have been conducted together with Maciej Kłopotowski since 2016 across the country, show a number of serious design and executive mistakes or examples of misuse. The purpose of this article is drawing attention to these issues and pointing out ways how they can be avoided. These objects may become completely valuable, universal tool for learning and a great way of studying architecture in an alternative way.

  11. Tactile feedback display with spatial and temporal resolutions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vishniakou, Siarhei; Lewis, Brian W; Niu, Xiaofan; Kargar, Alireza; Sun, Ke; Kalajian, Michael; Park, Namseok; Yang, Muchuan; Jing, Yi; Brochu, Paul; Sun, Zhelin; Li, Chun; Nguyen, Truong; Pei, Qibing; Wang, Deli

    2013-01-01

    We report the electronic recording of the touch contact and pressure using an active matrix pressure sensor array made of transparent zinc oxide thin-film transistors and tactile feedback display using an array of diaphragm actuators made of an interpenetrating polymer elastomer network. Digital replay, editing and manipulation of the recorded touch events were demonstrated with both spatial and temporal resolutions. Analog reproduction of the force is also shown possible using the polymer actuators, despite of the high driving voltage. The ability to record, store, edit, and replay touch information adds an additional dimension to digital technologies and extends the capabilities of modern information exchange with the potential to revolutionize physical learning, social networking, e-commerce, robotics, gaming, medical and military applications.

  12. Tapered whiskers are required for active tactile sensation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hires, Samuel Andrew; Pammer, Lorenz; Svoboda, Karel; Golomb, David

    2013-11-19

    Many mammals forage and burrow in dark constrained spaces. Touch through facial whiskers is important during these activities, but the close quarters makes whisker deployment challenging. The diverse shapes of facial whiskers reflect distinct ecological niches. Rodent whiskers are conical, often with a remarkably linear taper. Here we use theoretical and experimental methods to analyze interactions of mouse whiskers with objects. When pushed into objects, conical whiskers suddenly slip at a critical angle. In contrast, cylindrical whiskers do not slip for biologically plausible movements. Conical whiskers sweep across objects and textures in characteristic sequences of brief sticks and slips, which provide information about the tactile world. In contrast, cylindrical whiskers stick and remain stuck, even when sweeping across fine textures. Thus the conical whisker structure is adaptive for sensor mobility in constrained environments and in feature extraction during active haptic exploration of objects and surfaces. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01350.001.

  13. Tactile Feedback Display with Spatial and Temporal Resolutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vishniakou, Siarhei; Lewis, Brian W.; Niu, Xiaofan; Kargar, Alireza; Sun, Ke; Kalajian, Michael; Park, Namseok; Yang, Muchuan; Jing, Yi; Brochu, Paul; Sun, Zhelin; Li, Chun; Nguyen, Truong; Pei, Qibing; Wang, Deli

    2013-08-01

    We report the electronic recording of the touch contact and pressure using an active matrix pressure sensor array made of transparent zinc oxide thin-film transistors and tactile feedback display using an array of diaphragm actuators made of an interpenetrating polymer elastomer network. Digital replay, editing and manipulation of the recorded touch events were demonstrated with both spatial and temporal resolutions. Analog reproduction of the force is also shown possible using the polymer actuators, despite of the high driving voltage. The ability to record, store, edit, and replay touch information adds an additional dimension to digital technologies and extends the capabilities of modern information exchange with the potential to revolutionize physical learning, social networking, e-commerce, robotics, gaming, medical and military applications.

  14. Attention Modulates Visual-Tactile Interaction in Spatial Pattern Matching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Göschl, Florian; Engel, Andreas K.; Friese, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    Factors influencing crossmodal interactions are manifold and operate in a stimulus-driven, bottom-up fashion, as well as via top-down control. Here, we evaluate the interplay of stimulus congruence and attention in a visual-tactile task. To this end, we used a matching paradigm requiring the identification of spatial patterns that were concurrently presented visually on a computer screen and haptically to the fingertips by means of a Braille stimulator. Stimulation in our paradigm was always bimodal with only the allocation of attention being manipulated between conditions. In separate blocks of the experiment, participants were instructed to (a) focus on a single modality to detect a specific target pattern, (b) pay attention to both modalities to detect a specific target pattern, or (c) to explicitly evaluate if the patterns in both modalities were congruent or not. For visual as well as tactile targets, congruent stimulus pairs led to quicker and more accurate detection compared to incongruent stimulation. This congruence facilitation effect was more prominent under divided attention. Incongruent stimulation led to behavioral decrements under divided attention as compared to selectively attending a single sensory channel. Additionally, when participants were asked to evaluate congruence explicitly, congruent stimulation was associated with better performance than incongruent stimulation. Our results extend previous findings from audiovisual studies, showing that stimulus congruence also resulted in behavioral improvements in visuotactile pattern matching. The interplay of stimulus processing and attentional control seems to be organized in a highly flexible fashion, with the integration of signals depending on both bottom-up and top-down factors, rather than occurring in an ‘all-or-nothing’ manner. PMID:25203102

  15. Attention modulates visual-tactile interaction in spatial pattern matching.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Göschl

    Full Text Available Factors influencing crossmodal interactions are manifold and operate in a stimulus-driven, bottom-up fashion, as well as via top-down control. Here, we evaluate the interplay of stimulus congruence and attention in a visual-tactile task. To this end, we used a matching paradigm requiring the identification of spatial patterns that were concurrently presented visually on a computer screen and haptically to the fingertips by means of a Braille stimulator. Stimulation in our paradigm was always bimodal with only the allocation of attention being manipulated between conditions. In separate blocks of the experiment, participants were instructed to (a focus on a single modality to detect a specific target pattern, (b pay attention to both modalities to detect a specific target pattern, or (c to explicitly evaluate if the patterns in both modalities were congruent or not. For visual as well as tactile targets, congruent stimulus pairs led to quicker and more accurate detection compared to incongruent stimulation. This congruence facilitation effect was more prominent under divided attention. Incongruent stimulation led to behavioral decrements under divided attention as compared to selectively attending a single sensory channel. Additionally, when participants were asked to evaluate congruence explicitly, congruent stimulation was associated with better performance than incongruent stimulation. Our results extend previous findings from audiovisual studies, showing that stimulus congruence also resulted in behavioral improvements in visuotactile pattern matching. The interplay of stimulus processing and attentional control seems to be organized in a highly flexible fashion, with the integration of signals depending on both bottom-up and top-down factors, rather than occurring in an 'all-or-nothing' manner.

  16. Visual and tactile length matching in spatial neglect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisiach, Edoardo; McIntosh, Robert D; Dijkerman, H Chris; McClements, Kevin I; Colombo, Mariarosa; Milner, A David

    2004-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that many patients with spatial neglect underestimate the horizontal extent of leftwardly located shapes (presented on screen or on paper) relative to rightwardly located shapes. This has been used to help explain their leftward biases in line bisection. In the present study we have tested patients with right hemisphere damage, either with or without neglect, on a comparable length matching task, but using 3-dimensional objects. The task was executed first visually without tactile contact, and second through touch without vision. In both sense modalities, we found that patients with neglect, but not those without, tended to underestimate leftward located objects relative to rightward located objects, differing significantly in this regard from healthy subjects. However these lateral biases were not as frequent or as pronounced as in previous studies using 2-D visual shapes. Despite the similar asymmetries in the two sense modalities, we found only a small correlation between them, and clear double dissociations were observed among our patients. We conclude that leftward length underestimation cannot be attributed to any one single cause. First it cannot be entirely due to impairments in the visual pathways, such as hemianopia and/or processing biases, since the disorder is also seen in the tactile modality. At the same time, however, length underestimation phenomena cannot be fully explained as a disruption of a supramodal central size processor, since they can occur in either vision or touch alone. Our data would fit best with a multiple-factor model in which some patients show leftward length underestimation for modality-specific reasons, while others do so due to a more high-level disruption of size judgements.

  17. Hysteresis as an Implicit Prior in Tactile Spatial Decision Making

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiel, Sabrina D.; Bitzer, Sebastian; Nierhaus, Till; Kalberlah, Christian; Preusser, Sven; Neumann, Jane; Nikulin, Vadim V.; van der Meer, Elke; Villringer, Arno; Pleger, Burkhard

    2014-01-01

    Perceptual decisions not only depend on the incoming information from sensory systems but constitute a combination of current sensory evidence and internally accumulated information from past encounters. Although recent evidence emphasizes the fundamental role of prior knowledge for perceptual decision making, only few studies have quantified the relevance of such priors on perceptual decisions and examined their interplay with other decision-relevant factors, such as the stimulus properties. In the present study we asked whether hysteresis, describing the stability of a percept despite a change in stimulus property and known to occur at perceptual thresholds, also acts as a form of an implicit prior in tactile spatial decision making, supporting the stability of a decision across successively presented random stimuli (i.e., decision hysteresis). We applied a variant of the classical 2-point discrimination task and found that hysteresis influenced perceptual decision making: Participants were more likely to decide ‘same’ rather than ‘different’ on successively presented pin distances. In a direct comparison between the influence of applied pin distances (explicit stimulus property) and hysteresis, we found that on average, stimulus property explained significantly more variance of participants’ decisions than hysteresis. However, when focusing on pin distances at threshold, we found a trend for hysteresis to explain more variance. Furthermore, the less variance was explained by the pin distance on a given decision, the more variance was explained by hysteresis, and vice versa. Our findings suggest that hysteresis acts as an implicit prior in tactile spatial decision making that becomes increasingly important when explicit stimulus properties provide decreasing evidence. PMID:24587045

  18. Tooteko: a Case Study of Augmented Reality for AN Accessible Cultural Heritage. Digitization, 3d Printing and Sensors for AN Audio-Tactile Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Agnano, F.; Balletti, C.; Guerra, F.; Vernier, P.

    2015-02-01

    Tooteko is a smart ring that allows to navigate any 3D surface with your finger tips and get in return an audio content that is relevant in relation to the part of the surface you are touching in that moment. Tooteko can be applied to any tactile surface, object or sheet. However, in a more specific domain, it wants to make traditional art venues accessible to the blind, while providing support to the reading of the work for all through the recovery of the tactile dimension in order to facilitate the experience of contact with art that is not only "under glass." The system is made of three elements: a high-tech ring, a tactile surface tagged with NFC sensors, and an app for tablet or smartphone. The ring detects and reads the NFC tags and, thanks to the Tooteko app, communicates in wireless mode with the smart device. During the tactile navigation of the surface, when the finger reaches a hotspot, the ring identifies the NFC tag and activates, through the app, the audio track that is related to that specific hotspot. Thus a relevant audio content relates to each hotspot. The production process of the tactile surfaces involves scanning, digitization of data and 3D printing. The first experiment was modelled on the facade of the church of San Michele in Isola, made by Mauro Codussi in the late fifteenth century, and which marks the beginning of the Renaissance in Venice. Due to the absence of recent documentation on the church, the Correr Museum asked the Laboratorio di Fotogrammetria to provide it with the aim of setting up an exhibition about the order of the Camaldolesi, owners of the San Michele island and church. The Laboratorio has made the survey of the facade through laser scanning and UAV photogrammetry. The point clouds were the starting point for prototypation and 3D printing on different supports. The idea of the integration between a 3D printed tactile surface and sensors was born as a final thesis project at the Postgraduate Mastercourse in Digital

  19. Exploring the Invisible Universe: A Tactile and Braille Exhibit of Astronomical Images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcand, K. K.; Watzke, M.; de Pree, C.

    2010-06-01

    A tactile/Braille exhibit for the visually impaired community in the USA was launched in July 2009. The exhibit is part of the global From Earth to the Universe (FETTU) project, a Cornerstone of the International Year of Astronomy 2009. The science content of the travelling tactile/Braille exhibit includes explanations of our Sun, Eta Carinae, the Crab Nebula, the Whirlpool Galaxy and the electromagnetic spectrum, and was adapted from the tactile/Braille book Touch the Invisible Sky. We present some of the early observations and findings on the tactile/Braille FETTU exhibit. The new exhibit opens a wider door to experiencing and understanding astronomy for the underserved visually impaired population.

  20. The Effect of Tactile Cues on Auditory Stream Segregation Ability of Musicians and Nonmusicians

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Slater, Kyle D.; Marozeau, Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    Difficulty perceiving music is often cited as one of the main problems facing hearing-impaired listeners. It has been suggested that musical enjoyment could be enhanced if sound information absent due to impairment is transmitted via other sensory modalities such as vision or touch. In this study...... the random melody. Tactile cues were applied to the listener’s fingers on half of the blocks. Results showed that tactile cues can significantly improve the melodic segregation ability in both musician and nonmusician groups in challenging listening conditions. Overall, the musician group performance...... was always better; however, the magnitude of improvement with the introduction of tactile cues was similar in both groups. This study suggests that hearing-impaired listeners could potentially benefit from a system transmitting such information via a tactile modality...

  1. Tactile search for change has less memory than visual search for change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Takako; Yamaguchi, Ayumi; Tsutsui, Hideomi; Wake, Tenji

    2015-05-01

    Haptic perception of a 2D image is thought to make heavy demands on working memory. During active exploration, humans need to store the latest local sensory information and integrate it with kinesthetic information from hand and finger locations in order to generate a coherent perception. This tactile integration has not been studied as extensively as visual shape integration. In the current study, we compared working-memory capacity for tactile exploration to that of visual exploration as measured in change-detection tasks. We found smaller memory capacity during tactile exploration (approximately 1 item) compared with visual exploration (2-10 items). These differences generalized to position memory and could not be attributed to insufficient stimulus-exposure durations, acuity differences between modalities, or uncertainty over the position of items. This low capacity for tactile memory suggests that the haptic system is almost amnesic when outside the fingertips and that there is little or no cross-position integration.

  2. A Dexterity and Tactility Evaluation of the Australian Nuclear Biological Chemical (NBC) Glove

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Scanlan, S

    2004-01-01

    This report details the tactility and dexterity of four different glove types, including the Australian in-service NBC butyl rubber glove and Nomex flying glove for standardized (Purdue pegboard) and operational...

  3. The Use of Fluorescence Technology versus Visual and Tactile Examination in the Detection of Oral Lesions: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayoub, Hadeel M; Newcomb, Tara L; McCombs, Gayle B; Bonnie, Marshall

    2015-02-01

    This study compared the effectiveness of the VELscope® Vx versus visual and tactile intraoral examination in detecting oral lesions in an adult, high risk population. The pilot study compared the intra oral findings between 2 examination types. The sample was comprised of 30 participants who were addicted to either cigarettes or a dual addiction (cigarettes plus hookah). High risk population was defined as males who were current cigarette smokers or had a dual addiction. Two trained and experienced licensed dental hygienists conducted all examinations. Throughout the study, all visual and tactile intraoral examinations were conducted first by one dental hygienist first, followed by the VELscope® Vx fluorescence examinations by the second dental hygienist. All subjects received an inspection of the lips, labial and buccal mucosa, floor of the mouth, dorsal, ventral and lateral sides of the tongue, hard and soft palate, and visual inspection of the oropharynx and uvula. Both evaluations took place in 1 visit in the Dental Hygiene Research Center at Old Dominion University and external sites. All participants received oral cancer screening information, recommendations, referrals for tobacco cessation programs and brochures on the 2 types of examinations conducted. Participants were considered high risk based on demographics (current smokers and mostly males). Neither visual and tactile intraoral examination nor the VELscope® Vx examination showed positive lesions. No lesions were detected; therefore, no referrals were made. Data indicated the duration of tobacco use was significantly higher in cigarette smokers (14.1 years) than dual addiction smokers (5 years) (p>0.005). The average numbers of cigarettes smoked per day were 13.5 compared to 14.2 cigarettes for dual addiction smokers. Results from this study suggest the visual and tactile intraoral examination produced comparative results to the VELscope® Vx examination. Findings from this study support that the

  4. THE BLIND STUDENT AND HIS BODY FEELINGS: WAYS OF BEING AND PERCEIVING THE SCHOOL THROUGH TACTILE MAPS DURING PHYSICAL EDUCATION CLASSES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruy Antônio Wanderley Rodrigues de Miranda

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Historically, physical education in Brazil has been coming through a long process for achieving its position in regular schools. Conquering this place is owed to a large set of debates about the most varied pedagogical concepts.  This study aims at analyzing the body feelings of a blind student and phenomenologically describing this student’s perceptions of school spaces when influenced by the use of tactile maps. The study adopted a qualitative approach from a theoretical-methodological perspective of the case study with phenomenological-existential inspiration.  Based on the dialogues in this study, the authors understood that tactile maps, mediated by the student’s body feelings, represented significant importance to boost memorization of school spaces. This allowed more reliable guidance and safer mobility to that blind student and his own challenges of overcoming physical and attitudinal barriers when he needed to move around daily at school and during physical education classes.

  5. Vision affects tactile target and distractor processing even when space is task-irrelevant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann-Katrin eWesslein

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The human brain is adapted to integrate the information from multiple sensory modalities into coherent, robust representations of the objects and events in the external world. A large body of empirical research has demonstrated the ubiquitous nature of the interactions that take place between vision and touch, with the former typically dominating over the latter. Many studies have investigated the influence of visual stimuli on the processing of tactile stimuli (and vice versa. Other studies, meanwhile, have investigated the effect of directing a participant’s gaze either toward or else away from the body-part receiving the target tactile stimulation. Other studies, by contrast, have compared performance in those conditions in which the participant’s eyes have been open versus closed. We start by reviewing the research that has been published to date demonstrating the influence of vision on the processing of tactile targets, that is, on those stimuli that have to be attended or responded to. We outline that many – but not all – of the visuotactile interactions that have been observed to date may be attributable to the direction of spatial attention. We then move on to focus on the crossmodal influence of vision, as well as of the direction of gaze, on the processing of tactile distractors. We highlight the results of those studies demonstrating the influence of vision, rather than gaze direction (i.e., the direction of overt spatial attention, on tactile distractor processing (e.g., tactile variants of the negative-priming or flanker task. The conclusion is that no matter how vision of a tactile distractor is engaged, the result would appear to be the same, namely that tactile distractors are processed more thoroughly.

  6. Vagus nerve stimulation paired with tactile training improved sensory function in a chronic stroke patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilgard, Michael P; Rennaker, Robert L; Alexander, Jen; Dawson, Jesse

    2018-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) paired with rehabilitation can enhance neural plasticity in the primary sensory and motor cortices, improve forelimb function after stroke in animal models and improve motor function in patients with arm weakness after stroke. To gain "first-in-man" experience of VNS paired with tactile training in a patient with severe sensory impairment after stroke. During the long-term follow-up phase of a clinical trial of VNS paired with motor rehabilitation, a 71-year-old man who had made good motor recovery had ongoing severe sensory loss in his left hand and arm. He received VNS paired with tactile therapy in an attempt to improve his sensory function. During twenty 2-hour sessions, each passive and active tactile event was paired with a 0.5 second burst of 0.8 mA VNS. Sensory function was measured before, halfway through, and after this therapy. The patient did not report any side effects during or following VNS+Tactile therapy. Quantitative measures revealed lasting and clinically meaningful improvements in tactile threshold, proprioception, and stereognosis. After VNS+Tactile therapy, the patient was able to detect tactile stimulation to his affected hand that was eight times less intense, identify the joint position of his fingers in the affected hand three times more often, and identify everyday objects using his affected hand seven times more often, compared to baseline. Sensory function significantly improved in this man following VNS paired with tactile stimulation. This approach merits further study in controlled clinical trials.

  7. Investigating the time course of tactile reflexive attention using a non-spatial discrimination task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miles, Eleanor; Poliakoff, Ellen; Brown, Richard J

    2008-06-01

    Peripheral cues are thought to facilitate responses to stimuli presented at the same location because they lead to exogenous attention shifts. Facilitation has been observed in numerous studies of visual and auditory attention, but there have been only four demonstrations of tactile facilitation, all in studies with potential confounds. Three studies used a spatial (finger versus thumb) discrimination task, where the cue could have provided a spatial framework that might have assisted the discrimination of subsequent targets presented on the same side as the cue. The final study circumvented this problem by using a non-spatial discrimination; however, the cues were informative and interspersed with visual cues which may have affected the attentional effects observed. In the current study, therefore, we used a non-spatial tactile frequency discrimination task following a non-informative tactile white noise cue. When the target was presented 150 ms after the cue, we observed faster discrimination responses to targets presented on the same side compared to the opposite side as the cue; by 1000 ms, responses were significantly faster to targets presented on the opposite side to the cue. Thus, we demonstrated that tactile attentional facilitation can be observed in a non-spatial discrimination task, under unimodal conditions and with entirely non-predictive cues. Furthermore, we provide the first demonstration of significant tactile facilitation and tactile inhibition of return within a single experiment.

  8. Retention of high tactile acuity throughout the life span in blindness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legge, Gordon E; Madison, Cindee; Vaughn, Brenna N; Cheong, Allen M Y; Miller, Joseph C

    2008-11-01

    Previous studies of tactile acuity on the fingertip, using passive touch, have demonstrated an age-related decline in spatial resolution for both sighted and blind subjects. We have reexamined this age dependence with two newly designed tactile-acuity charts that require active exploration of the test symbols. One chart used dot patterns similar to braille, and the other used embossed Landolt rings. Groups of blind braille readers and sighted subjects ranging from 12 to 85 years old were tested in two experiments. We replicated previous findings for sighted subjects by showing an age-related decrease in tactile acuity by nearly 1% per year. Surprisingly, the blind subjects retained high acuity into old age, showing no age-related decline. For the blind subjects, tactile acuity did not correlate with braille reading speed, the amount of daily reading, or the age at which braille was learned. We conclude that when measured with active touch, blind subjects retain high tactile acuity into old age, unlike their aging sighted peers. We propose that blind people's use of active touch in daily activities, not specifically braille reading, results in preservation of tactile acuity across the life span.

  9. Structural design and output characteristic analysis of magnetostrictive tactile sensor for robotic applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Wendong; Wang, Bowen; Liu, Huaping; Li, Yunkai; Zhao, Ran; Weng, Ling; Zhang, Changgeng

    2018-05-01

    A novel magnetostrictive tactile sensor has been designed according to the transduction mechanism of cilia and Villari effect of iron-gallium alloy. The tactile sensor consists of a Galfenol beam, a pair of permanent magnets, a Hall sensor and a signal processing system. Compared with the conventional tactile sensor, our proposed tactile sensor can not only detect the contact-force, but also sense stiffness of an object. The performance and measurement range of tactile sensor have theoretically been analyzed and experimentally investigated. The results have revealed that the sensibility of tactile sensor for sensing force is up to 22.81mV/N at applied bias magnetic field of 2.56kA/m. Moreover, the sensor can effectively discriminate objects with different stiffness. The sensor is characterized by high sensitivity, good linearity, and quick response. It has the potential of being miniaturized and integrated into the finger of a robotic hand to realize force sensing and object recognition in real-time.

  10. Tactile spatial acuity in childhood: effects of age and fingertip size.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan M Peters

    Full Text Available Tactile acuity is known to decline with age in adults, possibly as the result of receptor loss, but less is understood about how tactile acuity changes during childhood. Previous research from our laboratory has shown that fingertip size influences tactile spatial acuity in young adults: those with larger fingers tend to have poorer acuity, possibly because mechanoreceptors are more sparsely distributed in larger fingers. We hypothesized that a similar relationship would hold among children. If so, children's tactile spatial acuity might be expected to worsen as their fingertips grow. However, concomitant CNS maturation might result in more efficient perceptual processing, counteracting the effect of fingertip growth on tactile acuity. To investigate, we conducted a cross-sectional study, testing 116 participants ranging in age from 6 to 16 years on a precision-controlled tactile grating orientation task. We measured each participant's grating orientation threshold on the dominant index finger, along with physical properties of the fingertip: surface area, volume, sweat pore spacing, and temperature. We found that, as in adults, children with larger fingertips (at a given age had significantly poorer acuity, yet paradoxically acuity did not worsen significantly with age. We propose that finger growth during development results in a gradual decline in innervation density as receptive fields reposition to cover an expanding skin surface. At the same time, central maturation presumably enhances perceptual processing.

  11. The Effect of Programmable Tactile Displays on Spatial Learning Skills in Children and Adolescents of Different Visual Disability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leo, Fabrizio; Cocchi, Elena; Brayda, Luca

    2017-07-01

    Vision loss has severe impacts on physical, social and emotional well-being. The education of blind children poses issues as many scholar disciplines (e.g., geometry, mathematics) are normally taught by heavily relying on vision. Touch-based assistive technologies are potential tools to provide graphical contents to blind users, improving learning possibilities and social inclusion. Raised-lines drawings are still the golden standard, but stimuli cannot be reconfigured or adapted and the blind person constantly requires assistance. Although much research concerns technological development, little work concerned the assessment of programmable tactile graphics, in educative and rehabilitative contexts. Here we designed, on programmable tactile displays, tests aimed at assessing spatial memory skills and shapes recognition abilities. Tests involved a group of blind and a group of low vision children and adolescents in a four-week longitudinal schedule. After establishing subject-specific difficulty levels, we observed a significant enhancement of performance across sessions and for both groups. Learning effects were comparable to raised paper control tests: however, our setup required minimal external assistance. Overall, our results demonstrate that programmable maps are an effective way to display graphical contents in educative/rehabilitative contexts. They can be at least as effective as traditional paper tests yet providing superior flexibility and versatility.

  12. Development of tactile floor plan for the blind and the visually impaired by 3D printing technique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raša Urbas

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the research was to produce tactile floor plans for blind and visually impaired people for the use in the museum. For the production of tactile floor plans 3D printing technique was selected among three different techniques. 3D prints were made of white and colored ABS polymer materials. Development of different elements of tactile floor plans, as well as the problems and the solutions during 3D printing, are described in the paper.

  13. Comparative evaluation of audio and audio - tactile methods to improve oral hygiene status of visually impaired school children

    OpenAIRE

    R Krishnakumar; Swarna Swathi Silla; Sugumaran K Durai; Mohan Govindarajan; Syed Shaheed Ahamed; Logeshwari Mathivanan

    2016-01-01

    Background: Visually impaired children are unable to maintain good oral hygiene, as their tactile abilities are often underdeveloped owing to their visual disturbances. Conventional brushing techniques are often poorly comprehended by these children and hence, it was decided to evaluate the effectiveness of audio and audio-tactile methods in improving the oral hygiene of these children. Objective: To evaluate and compare the effectiveness of audio and audio-tactile methods in improving oral h...

  14. Stable phase-shift despite quasi-rhythmic movements: a CPG-driven dynamic model of active tactile exploration in an insect

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    Nalin eHarischandra

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available An essential component of autonomous and flexible behaviour in animals is active exploration of the environment, allowing for perception-guided planning and control of actions. An important sensory system involved is active touch. Here, we introduce a general modelling framework of Central Pattern Generators (CPGs for movement generation in active tactile exploration behaviour. The CPG consists of two network levels: (i phase-coupled Hopf oscillators for rhythm generation, and (ii pattern formation networks for capturing the frequency and phase characteristics of individual joint oscillations. The model captured the natural, quasi-rhythmic joint kinematics as observed in coordinated antennal movements of walking stick insects. Moreover, it successfully produced tactile exploration behaviour on a three-dimensional skeletal model of the insect antennal system with physically realistic parameters. The effect of proprioceptor ablations could be simulated by changing the amplitude and offset parameters of the joint oscillators, only. As in the animal, the movement of both antennal joints was coupled with a stable phase difference, despite the quasi-rhythmicity of the joint angle time courses. We found that the phase-lead of the distal scape-pedicel joint relative to the proximal head-scape joint was essential for producing the natural tactile exploration behaviour and, thus, for tactile efficiency. For realistic movement patterns, the phase-lead could vary within a limited range of 10 to 30 degrees only. Tests with artificial movement patterns strongly suggest that this phase sensitivity is not a matter of the frequency composition of the natural movement pattern. Based on our modelling results, we propose that a constant phase difference is coded into the CPG of the antennal motor system and that proprioceptors are acting locally to regulate the joint movement amplitude.

  15. Robotic and Virtual Reality BCIs Using Spatial Tactile and Auditory Oddball Paradigms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutkowski, Tomasz M

    2016-01-01

    The paper reviews nine robotic and virtual reality (VR) brain-computer interface (BCI) projects developed by the author, in collaboration with his graduate students, within the BCI-lab research group during its association with University of Tsukuba, Japan. The nine novel approaches are discussed in applications to direct brain-robot and brain-virtual-reality-agent control interfaces using tactile and auditory BCI technologies. The BCI user intentions are decoded from the brainwaves in realtime using a non-invasive electroencephalography (EEG) and they are translated to a symbiotic robot or virtual reality agent thought-based only control. A communication protocol between the BCI output and the robot or the virtual environment is realized in a symbiotic communication scenario using an user datagram protocol (UDP), which constitutes an internet of things (IoT) control scenario. Results obtained from healthy users reproducing simple brain-robot and brain-virtual-agent control tasks in online experiments support the research goal of a possibility to interact with robotic devices and virtual reality agents using symbiotic thought-based BCI technologies. An offline BCI classification accuracy boosting method, using a previously proposed information geometry derived approach, is also discussed in order to further support the reviewed robotic and virtual reality thought-based control paradigms.

  16. Robotic and Virtual Reality BCIs Using Spatial Tactile and Auditory Oddball Paradigms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomasz Maciej Rutkowski

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper reviews nine robotic and virtual reality (VR brain-computer interface (BCI projects developed by the author, in collaboration with his graduate students, within the BCI-lab research group during its association with University of Tsukuba, Japan. The nine novel approaches are discussed in applications to direct brain-robot and brain-virtual-reality-agent control interfaces using tactile and auditory BCI technologies. The BCI user intentions are decoded from the brainwaves in realtime using a non-invasive electroencephalography (EEG and they are translated to a symbiotic robot or virtual reality agent thought-based only control. A communication protocol between the BCI output and the robot or the virtual environment is realized in a symbiotic communication scenario using an user datagram protocol (UDP, which constitutes an internet of things (IoT control scenario. Results obtained from healthy users reproducing simple brain-robot and brain-virtual-agent control tasks in online experiments support the research goal of a possibility to interact with robotic devices and virtual reality agents using symbiotic thought-based BCI technologies. An offline BCI classification accuracy boosting method, using a previously proposed information geometry derived approach, is also discussed in order to further support the reviewed robotic and virtual reality thought-based control paradigms.

  17. Research progress of functional magnetic resonance imaging in cross-modal activation of visual cortex during tactile perception

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhan Jie; Gong Honghan

    2013-01-01

    An increasing amount of neuroimaging studies recently demonstrated activation of visual cortex in both blind and sighted participants when performing a variety of tactile tasks such as Braille reading and tactile object recognition, which indicates that visual cortex not only receives visual information, but may participate in tactile perception. To address these cross-modal changes of visual cortex and the neurophysiological mechanisms, many researchers conducted explosive studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and have made some achievements. This review focuses on cross-modal activation of visual cortex and the underlying mechanisms during tactile perception in both blind and sighted individuals. (authors)

  18. Human detection and discrimination of tactile repeatability, mechanical backlash, and temporal delay in a combined tactile-kinesthetic haptic display system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxon, Andrew J; Johnson, David E; Tan, Hong Z; Provancher, William R

    2013-01-01

    Many of the devices used in haptics research are over-engineered for the task and are designed with capabilities that go far beyond human perception levels. Designing devices that more closely match the limits of human perception will make them smaller, less expensive, and more useful. However, many device-centric perception thresholds have yet to be evaluated. To this end, three experiments were conducted, using one degree-of-freedom contact location feedback device in combination with a kinesthetic display, to provide a more explicit set of specifications for similar tactile-kinesthetic haptic devices. The first of these experiments evaluated the ability of humans to repeatedly localize tactile cues across the fingerpad. Subjects could localize cues to within 1.3 mm and showed bias toward the center of the fingerpad. The second experiment evaluated the minimum perceptible difference of backlash at the tactile element. Subjects were able to discriminate device backlash in excess of 0.46 mm on low-curvature models and 0.93 mm on high-curvature models. The last experiment evaluated the minimum perceptible difference of system delay between user action and device reaction. Subjects were able to discriminate delays in excess of 61 ms. The results from these studies can serve as the maximum (i.e., most demanding) device specifications for most tactile-kinesthetic haptic systems.

  19. Tactile display landing safety and precision improvements for the Space Shuttle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, John M.

    A tactile display belt using 24 electro-mechanical tactile transducers (tactors) was used to determine if a modified tactile display system, known as the Tactile Situation Awareness System (TSAS) improved the safety and precision of a complex spacecraft (i.e. the Space Shuttle Orbiter) in guided precision approaches and landings. The goal was to determine if tactile cues enhance safety and mission performance through reduced workload, increased situational awareness (SA), and an improved operational capability by increasing secondary cognitive workload capacity and human-machine interface efficiency and effectiveness. Using both qualitative and quantitative measures such as NASA's Justiz Numerical Measure and Synwork1 scores, an Overall Workload (OW) measure, the Cooper-Harper rating scale, and the China Lake Situational Awareness scale, plus Pre- and Post-Flight Surveys, the data show that tactile displays decrease OW, improve SA, counteract fatigue, and provide superior warning and monitoring capacity for dynamic, off-nominal, high concurrent workload scenarios involving complex, cognitive, and multi-sensory critical scenarios. Use of TSAS for maintaining guided precision approaches and landings was generally intuitive, reduced training times, and improved task learning effects. Ultimately, the use of a homogeneous, experienced, and statistically robust population of test pilots demonstrated that the use of tactile displays for Space Shuttle approaches and landings with degraded vehicle systems, weather, and environmental conditions produced substantial improvements in safety, consistency, reliability, and ease of operations under demanding conditions. Recommendations for further analysis and study are provided in order to leverage the results from this research and further explore the potential to reduce the risk of spaceflight and aerospace operations in general.

  20. Detection of fever in children emergency care: comparisons of tactile and rectal temperatures in Nigerian children

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    Okafor Olubukola O

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Clinical thermometry is the objective method for temperature measurements but tactile assessment of fever at home is usually the basis for seeking medical attention especially where the cost and level of literacy preclude the use of thermometers. This study was carried out to determine the reliability of tactile perception of fever by caregivers, nurses and house physicians in comparison to rectal thermometry and also the use of commonly practiced surface of the hand in the care of ill children. All caregivers of children aged 6 to 59 months who presented to the emergency department were approached consecutively at the triage stage but 182 children participated. Each child had tactile assessment of fever using palmar and dorsal surfaces of the hand by the caregivers, House Physicians and Nursing Officers. Rectal temperature was also measured and read independently by nurses and house physicians. Comparisons were made between tactile assessments and thermometer readings using a cut-off for fever, 38.0°C and above. Findings The caregivers' perception of fever had a sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV and negative predictive value (NPV of 95%, 23%, 66% and 73%, respectively compared with 93%, 26%, 67% and 69%, respectively for nursing officers. Irrespective of the groups studied, 77.1% of 336 assessors opined that the dorsal surface of the hand was more sensitive in tactile assessment of temperature and the frequently used site for assessment of fever were the head (35.6% and neck (33.3%. Tactile assessment of temperature over-detected fever in ≥ 24% of cases among the three groups of assessors. Conclusions The present study suggests that tactile assessment of temperature may over estimate the prevalence of fever, it does not detect some cases and the need for objective measurement of temperature is emphasised in paediatric emergency care.

  1. Integration of tactile input across fingers in a patient with finger agnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anema, Helen A; Overvliet, Krista E; Smeets, Jeroen B J; Brenner, Eli; Dijkerman, H Chris

    2011-01-01

    Finger agnosia has been described as an inability to explicitly individuate between the fingers, which is possibly due to fused neural representations of these fingers. Hence, are patients with finger agnosia unable to keep tactile information perceived over several fingers separate? Here, we tested a finger agnosic patient (GO) on two tasks that measured the ability to keep tactile information simultaneously perceived by individual fingers separate. In experiment 1 GO performed a haptic search task, in which a target (the absence of a protruded line) needed to be identified among distracters (protruded lines). The lines were presented simultaneously to the fingertips of both hands. Similarly to the controls, her reaction time decreased when her fingers were aligned as compared to when her fingers were stretched and in an unaligned position. This suggests that she can keep tactile input from different fingers separate. In experiment two, GO was required to judge the position of a target tactile stimulus to the index finger, relatively to a reference tactile stimulus to the middle finger, both in fingers uncrossed and crossed position. GO was able to indicate the relative position of the target stimulus as well as healthy controls, which indicates that she was able to keep tactile information perceived by two neighbouring fingers separate. Interestingly, GO performed better as compared to the healthy controls in the finger crossed condition. Together, these results suggest the GO is able to implicitly distinguish between tactile information perceived by multiple fingers. We therefore conclude that finger agnosia is not caused by minor disruptions of low-level somatosensory processing. These findings further underpin the idea of a selective impaired higher order body representation restricted to the fingers as underlying cause of finger agnosia. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Inert gas narcosis has no influence on thermo-tactile sensation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakovljević, Miroljub; Vidmar, Gaj; Mekjavic, Igor B

    2012-05-01

    Contribution of skin thermal sensors under inert gas narcosis to the raising hypothermia is not known. Such information is vital for understanding the impact of narcosis on behavioural thermoregulation, diver safety and judgment of thermal (dis)comfort in the hyperbaric environment. So this study aimed at establishing the effects of normoxic concentration of 30% nitrous oxide (N(2)O) on thermo-tactile threshold sensation by studying 16 subjects [eight females and eight males; eight sensitive (S) and eight non-sensitive (NS) to N(2)O]. Their mean (SD) age was 22.1 (1.8) years, weight 72.8 (15.3) kg, height 1.75 (0.10) m and body mass index 23.8 (3.8) kg m(-2). Quantitative thermo-tactile sensory testing was performed on forearm, upper arm and thigh under two experimental conditions: breathing air (air trial) and breathing normoxic mixture of 30% N(2)O (N(2)O trial) in the mixed sequence. Difference in thermo-tactile sensitivity thresholds between two groups of subjects in two experimental conditions was analysed by 3-way mixed-model analysis of covariance. There were no statistically significant differences in thermo-tactile thresholds either between the Air and N(2)O trials, or between S and NS groups, or between females and males, or with respect to body mass index. Some clinically insignificant lowering of thermo-tactile thresholds occurred only for warm thermo-tactile thresholds on upper arm and thigh. The results indicated that normoxic mixture of 30% N(2)O had no influence on thermo-tactile sensation in normothermia.

  3. Continuous theta-burst stimulation modulates tactile synchronization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kevin Gh; Jacobs, Mark F; Asmussen, Michael J; Zapallow, Christopher M; Tommerdahl, Mark; Nelson, Aimee J

    2013-08-23

    Temporal order judgement (TOJ) is the ability to detect the order of occurrence of two sequentially delivered stimuli. Previous research has shown that TOJ in the presence of synchronized periodic conditioning stimuli impairs TOJ performance, and this phenomenon is suggested to be mediated by GABAergic interneurons that cause perceptual binding across the two skin sites. Application of continuous theta-burst repetitive TMS (cTBS) over primary somatosensory cortex (SI) alters temporal and spatial tactile perception. The purpose of this study was to examine TOJ perception in the presence and absence of synchronized periodic conditioning stimuli before and after cTBS applied over left-hemisphere SI. A TOJ task was administered on the right index and middle finger (D2 and D3) in two separate sessions in the presence and absence of conditioning stimuli (a background low amplitude sinusoidal vibration). CTBS reduced the impact of the conditioning stimuli on TOJ performance for up to 18 minutes following stimulation while sham cTBS did not affect TOJ performance. In contrast, the TOJ task performed in the absence of synchronized conditioning stimulation was unaltered following cTBS. We conclude that cTBS suppresses inhibitory networks in SI that mediate perceptual binding during TOJ synchronization. CTBS offers one method to suppress cortical excitability in the cortex and potentially benefit clinical populations with altered inhibitory cortical circuits. Additionally, TOJ measures with conditioning stimuli may provide an avenue to assess sensory processing in neurologically impaired patient populations.

  4. Tactile interactions activate mirror system regions in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKyton, Ayelet

    2011-12-07

    Communicating with others is essential for the development of a society. Although types of communications, such as language and visual gestures, were thoroughly investigated in the past, little research has been done to investigate interactions through touch. To study this we used functional magnetic resonance imaging. Twelve participants were scanned with their eyes covered while stroking four kinds of items, representing different somatosensory stimuli: a human hand, a realistic rubber hand, an object, and a simple texture. Although the human and the rubber hands had the same overall shape, in three regions there was significantly more blood oxygen level dependent activation when touching the real hand: the anterior medial prefrontal cortex, the ventral premotor cortex, and the posterior superior temporal cortex. The last two regions are part of the mirror network and are known to be activated through visual interactions such as gestures. Interestingly, in this study, these areas were activated through a somatosensory interaction. A control experiment was performed to eliminate confounds of temperature, texture, and imagery, suggesting that the activation in these areas was correlated with the touch of a human hand. These results reveal the neuronal network working behind human tactile interactions, and highlight the participation of the mirror system in such functions.

  5. Tactile thermal oral stimulation increases the cortical representation of swallowing

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    Suntrup Sonja

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dysphagia is a leading complication in stroke patients causing aspiration pneumonia, malnutrition and increased mortality. Current strategies of swallowing therapy involve on the one hand modification of eating behaviour or swallowing technique and on the other hand facilitation of swallowing with the use of pharyngeal sensory stimulation. Thermal tactile oral stimulation (TTOS is an established method to treat patients with neurogenic dysphagia especially if caused by sensory deficits. Little is known about the possible mechanisms by which this interventional therapy may work. We employed whole-head MEG to study changes in cortical activation during self-paced volitional swallowing in fifteen healthy subjects with and without TTOS. Data were analyzed by means of synthetic aperture magnetometry (SAM and the group analysis of individual SAM data was performed using a permutation test. Results Compared to the normal swallowing task a significantly increased bilateral cortical activation was seen after oropharyngeal stimulation. Analysis of the chronological changes during swallowing suggests facilitation of both the oral and the pharyngeal phase of deglutition. Conclusion In the present study functional cortical changes elicited by oral sensory stimulation could be demonstrated. We suggest that these results reflect short-term cortical plasticity of sensory swallowing areas. These findings facilitate our understanding of the role of cortical reorganization in dysphagia treatment and recovery.

  6. Common mechanisms of spatial attention in memory and perception: a tactile dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Andersen, Søren K; Müller, Matthias M

    2014-03-01

    Orienting attention to locations in mnemonic representations engages processes that functionally and anatomically overlap the neural circuitry guiding prospective shifts of spatial attention. The attention-based rehearsal account predicts that the requirement to withdraw attention from a memorized location impairs memory accuracy. In a dual-task study, we simultaneously presented retro-cues and pre-cues to guide spatial attention in short-term memory (STM) and perception, respectively. The spatial direction of each cue was independent of the other. The locations indicated by the combined cues could be compatible (same hand) or incompatible (opposite hands). Incompatible directional cues decreased lateralized activity in brain potentials evoked by visual cues, indicating interference in the generation of prospective attention shifts. The detection of external stimuli at the prospectively cued location was impaired when the memorized location was part of the perceptually ignored hand. The disruption of attention-based rehearsal by means of incompatible pre-cues reduced memory accuracy and affected encoding of tactile test stimuli at the retrospectively cued hand. These findings highlight the functional significance of spatial attention for spatial STM. The bidirectional interactions between both tasks demonstrate that spatial attention is a shared neural resource of a capacity-limited system that regulates information processing in internal and external stimulus representations.

  7. Maintenance of tactile short-term memory for locations is mediated by spatial attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Andersen, Søren K; Müller, Matthias M

    2012-01-01

    According to the attention-based rehearsal hypothesis, maintenance of spatial information is mediated by covert orienting towards memorized locations. In a somatosensory memory task, participants simultaneously received bilateral pairs of mechanical sample pulses. For each hand, sample stimuli were randomly assigned to one of three locations (fingers). A subsequent visual retro-cue determined whether the left or right hand sample was to be memorized. The retro-cue elicited lateralized activity reflecting the location of the relevant sample stimulus. Sensory processing during the retention period was probed by task-irrelevant pulses randomized to locations at the cued and uncued hand. The somatosensory N140 was enhanced for probes delivered to the cued hand, relative to uncued. Probes presented shortly after the retro-cue showed greatest attentional modulations. This suggests that transient contributions from retrospective selection overlapped with the sustained effect of attention-based rehearsal. In conclusion, focal attention shifts within tactile mnemonic content occurred after retro-cues and guided sensory processing during retention. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Integrated trimodal SSEP experimental setup for visual, auditory and tactile stimulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuś, Rafał; Spustek, Tomasz; Zieleniewska, Magdalena; Duszyk, Anna; Rogowski, Piotr; Suffczyński, Piotr

    2017-12-01

    Objective. Steady-state evoked potentials (SSEPs), the brain responses to repetitive stimulation, are commonly used in both clinical practice and scientific research. Particular brain mechanisms underlying SSEPs in different modalities (i.e. visual, auditory and tactile) are very complex and still not completely understood. Each response has distinct resonant frequencies and exhibits a particular brain topography. Moreover, the topography can be frequency-dependent, as in case of auditory potentials. However, to study each modality separately and also to investigate multisensory interactions through multimodal experiments, a proper experimental setup appears to be of critical importance. The aim of this study was to design and evaluate a novel SSEP experimental setup providing a repetitive stimulation in three different modalities (visual, tactile and auditory) with a precise control of stimuli parameters. Results from a pilot study with a stimulation in a particular modality and in two modalities simultaneously prove the feasibility of the device to study SSEP phenomenon. Approach. We developed a setup of three separate stimulators that allows for a precise generation of repetitive stimuli. Besides sequential stimulation in a particular modality, parallel stimulation in up to three different modalities can be delivered. Stimulus in each modality is characterized by a stimulation frequency and a waveform (sine or square wave). We also present a novel methodology for the analysis of SSEPs. Main results. Apart from constructing the experimental setup, we conducted a pilot study with both sequential and simultaneous stimulation paradigms. EEG signals recorded during this study were analyzed with advanced methodology based on spatial filtering and adaptive approximation, followed by statistical evaluation. Significance. We developed a novel experimental setup for performing SSEP experiments. In this sense our study continues the ongoing research in this field. On the

  9. Tactile graphic: the possible form of information and inclusion of the visually impaired

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leia de Andrade

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Although the graphics are present in the textbooks, these are not so accessible to the blind. In this case you need to generate them in high relief to be allowed to read through the tactile sense. For research in the development of tactile graphics with students in 5th grade the urban perimeter of Maringá (PR, drew on the Piaget’s theory, who directed the evaluation of the cognitive development of students in the tasks, and also semiology graphics proposed by Bertin, who helped design treatment information for this production. In order to show the importance of tactile graphics for visually impaired students, which are inserted into the regular classroom, it was evaluated the techniques of construction and production of tactile graphic, and the steps of reading material. The results show that the graphs constructed instigate exploration, as much as it was a favor to tactile perception. It is necessary to respect the "living space" of the chart, in the case indicated by the distance between the hands. Regarding reading, the difficulties encountered were the identification of form, the notion of scale and coordinate system.

  10. The TacTip Family: Soft Optical Tactile Sensors with 3D-Printed Biomimetic Morphologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward-Cherrier, Benjamin; Pestell, Nicholas; Cramphorn, Luke; Winstone, Benjamin; Giannaccini, Maria Elena; Rossiter, Jonathan; Lepora, Nathan F

    2018-04-01

    Tactile sensing is an essential component in human-robot interaction and object manipulation. Soft sensors allow for safe interaction and improved gripping performance. Here we present the TacTip family of sensors: a range of soft optical tactile sensors with various morphologies fabricated through dual-material 3D printing. All of these sensors are inspired by the same biomimetic design principle: transducing deformation of the sensing surface via movement of pins analogous to the function of intermediate ridges within the human fingertip. The performance of the TacTip, TacTip-GR2, TacTip-M2, and TacCylinder sensors is here evaluated and shown to attain submillimeter accuracy on a rolling cylinder task, representing greater than 10-fold super-resolved acuity. A version of the TacTip sensor has also been open-sourced, enabling other laboratories to adopt it as a platform for tactile sensing and manipulation research. These sensors are suitable for real-world applications in tactile perception, exploration, and manipulation, and will enable further research and innovation in the field of soft tactile sensing.

  11. Symbol recognition produced by points of tactile stimulation: the illusion of linear continuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzales, G R

    1996-11-01

    To determine whether tactile receptive communication is possible through the use of a mechanical device that produces the phi phenomenon on the body surface. Twenty-six subjects (11 blind and 15 sighted participants) were tested with use of a tactile communication device (TCD) that produces an illusion of linear continuity forming numbers on the dorsal aspect of the wrist. Recognition of a number or number set was the goal. A TCD with protruding and vibrating solenoids produced sequentially delivered points of cutaneous stimulation along a pattern resembling numbers and created the illusion of dragging a vibrating stylet to form numbers, similar to what might be felt by testing for graphesthesia. Blind subjects recognized numbers with fewer trials than did sighted subjects, although all subjects were able to recognize all the numbers produced by the TCD. Subjects who had been blind since birth and had no prior tactile exposure to numbers were able to draw the numbers after experiencing them delivered by the TCD even though they did not recognize their meaning. The phi phenomenon is probably responsible for the illusion of continuous lines in the shape of numbers as produced by the TCD. This tactile illusion could potentially be used for more complex tactile communications such as letters and words.

  12. Active Prior Tactile Knowledge Transfer for Learning Tactual Properties of New Objects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Di Feng

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Reusing the tactile knowledge of some previously-explored objects (prior objects helps us to easily recognize the tactual properties of new objects. In this paper, we enable a robotic arm equipped with multi-modal artificial skin, like humans, to actively transfer the prior tactile exploratory action experiences when it learns the detailed physical properties of new objects. These experiences, or prior tactile knowledge, are built by the feature observations that the robot perceives from multiple sensory modalities, when it applies the pressing, sliding, and static contact movements on objects with different action parameters. We call our method Active Prior Tactile Knowledge Transfer (APTKT, and systematically evaluated its performance by several experiments. Results show that the robot improved the discrimination accuracy by around 10 % when it used only one training sample with the feature observations of prior objects. By further incorporating the predictions from the observation models of prior objects as auxiliary features, our method improved the discrimination accuracy by over 20 % . The results also show that the proposed method is robust against transferring irrelevant prior tactile knowledge (negative knowledge transfer.

  13. Application of artificial tactile sensing approach in kidney-stone-removal laparoscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afshari, Elnaz; Najarian, Siamak; Simforoosh, Nasser

    2010-01-01

    Artificial tactile sensing is a novel method for obtaining different characteristics of a hard object embedded in a soft tissue. In this regard, artificial palpation is one of the most valuable achievements of artificial tactile sensing that can be used in various fields of medicine and more specifically in surgery. In this study, considering the present problems and limitations in kidney-stone-removal laparoscopy, a new application will be presented for artificial tactile sensing approach. Having imitated surgeon's palpation during open surgery and modeled it conceptually, indications of stone existence that appear on the surface of kidney (due to exerting mechanical load) were determined. A number of different cases were created and solved by the software. Using stress distribution contours and stress graphs, it is illustrated that the created stress patterns on the surface of kidney not only show the existence of stone inside, but also its exact location. In fact, the reliability and accuracy of artificial tactile sensing method in detection of kidney stone during laparoscopy is demonstrated by means of finite element analysis. Also, in this paper, the functional principles of tactile system capable of determining the exact location of stone during laparoscopy will be presented.

  14. Variation in the autism candidate gene GABRB3 modulates tactile sensitivity in typically developing children

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    Tavassoli Teresa

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Autism spectrum conditions have a strong genetic component. Atypical sensory sensitivities are one of the core but neglected features of autism spectrum conditions. GABRB3 is a well-characterised candidate gene for autism spectrum conditions. In mice, heterozygous Gabrb3 deletion is associated with increased tactile sensitivity. However, no study has examined if tactile sensitivity is associated with GABRB3 genetic variation in humans. To test this, we conducted two pilot genetic association studies in the general population, analysing two phenotypic measures of tactile sensitivity (a parent-report and a behavioural measure for association with 43 SNPs in GABRB3. Findings Across both tactile sensitivity measures, three SNPs (rs11636966, rs8023959 and rs2162241 were nominally associated with both phenotypes, providing a measure of internal validation. Parent-report scores were nominally associated with six SNPs (P Conclusions This is the first human study to show an association between GABRB3 variation and tactile sensitivity. This provides support for the evidence from animal models implicating the role of GABRB3 variation in the atypical sensory sensitivity in autism spectrum conditions. Future research is underway to directly test this association in cases of autism spectrum conditions.

  15. Real-Time Gesture-Controlled Physical Modelling Music Synthesis with Tactile Feedback

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Howard

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available Electronic sound synthesis continues to offer huge potential possibilities for the creation of new musical instruments. The traditional approach is, however, seriously limited in that it incorporates only auditory feedback and it will typically make use of a sound synthesis model (e.g., additive, subtractive, wavetable, and sampling that is inherently limited and very often nonintuitive to the musician. In a direct attempt to challenge these issues, this paper describes a system that provides tactile as well as acoustic feedback, with real-time synthesis that invokes a more intuitive response from players since it is based upon mass-spring physical modelling. Virtual instruments are set up via a graphical user interface in terms of the physical properties of basic well-understood sounding objects such as strings, membranes, and solids. These can be interconnected to form complex integrated structures. Acoustic excitation can be applied at any point mass via virtual bowing, plucking, striking, specified waveform, or from any external sound source. Virtual microphones can be placed at any point masses to deliver the acoustic output. These aspects of the instrument are described along with the nature of the resulting acoustic output.

  16. The effect of vertical and horizontal symmetry on memory for tactile patterns in late blind individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cattaneo, Zaira; Vecchi, Tomaso; Fantino, Micaela; Herbert, Andrew M; Merabet, Lotfi B

    2013-02-01

    Visual stimuli that exhibit vertical symmetry are easier to remember than stimuli symmetric along other axes, an advantage that extends to the haptic modality as well. Critically, the vertical symmetry memory advantage has not been found in early blind individuals, despite their overall superior memory, as compared with sighted individuals, and the presence of an overall advantage for identifying symmetric over asymmetric patterns. The absence of the vertical axis memory advantage in the early blind may depend on their total lack of visual experience or on the effect of prolonged visual deprivation. To disentangle this issue, in this study, we measured the ability of late blind individuals to remember tactile spatial patterns that were either vertically or horizontally symmetric or asymmetric. Late blind participants showed better memory performance for symmetric patterns. An additional advantage for the vertical axis of symmetry over the horizontal one was reported, but only for patterns presented in the frontal plane. In the horizontal plane, no difference was observed between vertical and horizontal symmetric patterns, due to the latter being recalled particularly well. These results are discussed in terms of the influence of the spatial reference frame adopted during exploration. Overall, our data suggest that prior visual experience is sufficient to drive the vertical symmetry memory advantage, at least when an external reference frame based on geocentric cues (i.e., gravity) is adopted.

  17. Practice makes perfect: the neural substrates of tactile discrimination by Mah-Jong experts include the primary visual cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Honda Manabu

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background It has yet to be determined whether visual-tactile cross-modal plasticity due to visual deprivation, particularly in the primary visual cortex (V1, is solely due to visual deprivation or if it is a result of long-term tactile training. Here we conducted an fMRI study with normally-sighted participants who had undergone long-term training on the tactile shape discrimination of the two dimensional (2D shapes on Mah-Jong tiles (Mah-Jong experts. Eight Mah-Jong experts and twelve healthy volunteers who were naïve to Mah-Jong performed a tactile shape matching task using Mah-Jong tiles with no visual input. Furthermore, seven out of eight experts performed a tactile shape matching task with unfamiliar 2D Braille characters. Results When participants performed tactile discrimination of Mah-Jong tiles, the left lateral occipital cortex (LO and V1 were activated in the well-trained subjects. In the naïve subjects, the LO was activated but V1 was not activated. Both the LO and V1 of the well-trained subjects were activated during Braille tactile discrimination tasks. Conclusion The activation of V1 in subjects trained in tactile discrimination may represent altered cross-modal responses as a result of long-term training.

  18. Finger pad friction and tactile perception of laser treated, stamped and cold rolled micro-structured stainless steel sheet surfaces

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zhang, Sheng; Zeng, X.; Matthews, D.T.A.; Igartua, A.; Rodriguez Vidal, E.; Contreras Fortes, J.; Van Der Heide, E.

    2017-01-01

    Tactile perception is a complex system, which depends on frictional interactions between skin and counter-body. The contact mechanics of tactile friction is governed by many factors such as the state and properties of skin and counter-body. In order to discover the connection between perception and

  19. A Meta-Analytic Review of Tactile-Cued Self-Monitoring Interventions Used by Students in Educational Settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougall, Dennis; Ornelles, Cecily; Mersberg, Kawika; Amona, Kekama

    2015-01-01

    In this meta-analytic review, we critically evaluate procedures and outcomes from nine intervention studies in which students used tactile-cued self-monitoring in educational settings. Findings suggest that most tactile-cued self-monitoring interventions have moderate to strong effects, have emerged only recently, and have not yet achieved the…

  20. Teacher-Made Tactile Science Materials with Critical and Creative Thinking Activities for Learners Including Those with Visual Impairments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teske, Jolene K.; Gray, Phyllis; Kuhn, Mason A.; Clausen, Courtney K.; Smith, Latisha L.; Alsubia, Sukainah A.; Ghayoorad, Maryam; Rule, Audrey C.; Schneider, Jean Suchsland

    2014-01-01

    Gifted students with visual impairments are twice exceptional learners and may not evidence their advanced science aptitudes without appropriate accommodations for learning science. However, effective tactile science teaching materials may be easily made. Recent research has shown that when tactile materials are used with "all" students…

  1. Evaluation of Circle Diameter by Distributed Tactile Information in Active Tracing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroyuki Nakamoto

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Active touch with voluntary movement on the surface of an object is important for human to obtain the local and detailed features on it. In addition, the active touch is considered to enhance the human spatial resolution. In order to improve dexterity performance of multifinger robotic hands, it is necessary to study an active touch method for robotic hands. In this paper, first, we define four requirements of a tactile sensor for active touch and design a distributed tactile sensor model, which can measure a distribution of compressive deformation. Second, we suggest a measurement process with the sensor model, a synthesis method of distributed deformations. In the experiments, a five-finger robotic hand with tactile sensors traces on the surface of cylindrical objects and evaluates the diameters. We confirm that the hand can obtain more information of the diameters by tracing the finger.

  2. A case of tactile agnosia with a lesion restricted to the post-central gyrus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estañol, Bruno; Baizabal-Carvallo, José Fidel; Sentíes-Madrid, Horacio

    2008-01-01

    Tactile agnosia has been described after lesions of the primary sensory cortex but the exact location and extension of those lesions is not clear. We report the clinical features and imaging findings in a patient with an acute ischemic stroke restricted to the primary sensory area (S1). A 73-year-old man had a sudden onset of a left alien hand, without left hemiparesis. Neurological examination showed intact primary sensory functions, but impaired recognition of shape, size (macrogeometrical) and texture (microgeometrical) of objects; damage confined to the post-central gyrus, sparing the posterior parietal cortex was demonstrated on MRI. An embolic occlusion of the anterior parietal artery was suspected as mechanism of stroke. Tactile agnosia with impaired microgeometrical and macrogeometrical features' recognition can result from a single lesion in the primary sensory cortex (S1) in the right parietal hemisphere, sparing other regions of the cerebral cortex which presumably participate in tactile object recognition.

  3. Combining Electromyography and Tactile Myography to Improve Hand and Wrist Activity Detection in Prostheses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noémie Jaquier

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Despite recent advances in prosthetics and assistive robotics in general, robust simultaneous and proportional control of dexterous prosthetic devices remains an unsolved problem, mainly because of inadequate sensorization. In this paper, we study the application of regression to muscle activity, detected using a flexible tactile sensor recording muscle bulging in the forearm (tactile myography—TMG. The sensor is made of 320 highly sensitive cells organized in an array forming a bracelet. We propose the use of Gaussian process regression to improve the prediction of wrist, hand and single-finger activation, using TMG, surface electromyography (sEMG; the traditional approach in the field, and a combination of the two. We prove the effectiveness of the approach for different levels of activations in a real-time goal-reaching experiment using tactile data. Furthermore, we performed a batch comparison between the different forms of sensorization, using a Gaussian process with different kernel distances.

  4. The Tactile Ethics of Soft Robotics: Designing Wisely for Human-Robot Interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Thomas; Scheutz, Matthias

    2017-06-01

    Soft robots promise an exciting design trajectory in the field of robotics and human-robot interaction (HRI), promising more adaptive, resilient movement within environments as well as a safer, more sensitive interface for the objects or agents the robot encounters. In particular, tactile HRI is a critical dimension for designers to consider, especially given the onrush of assistive and companion robots into our society. In this article, we propose to surface an important set of ethical challenges for the field of soft robotics to meet. Tactile HRI strongly suggests that soft-bodied robots balance tactile engagement against emotional manipulation, model intimacy on the bonding with a tool not with a person, and deflect users from personally and socially destructive behavior the soft bodies and surfaces could normally entice.

  5. Enhancing Activity by Means of Tactile Symbols: A Study of a Heterogeneous Group of Pupils with Congenital Blindness, Intellectual Disability and Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aasen, Gro; Naerland, Terje

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates responses to verbal versus tactile requests in children with congenital blindness, intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Observation was conducted on two occasions. At T1, requests were given verbally, and at T2, tactile requests were given. All pupils perceived tactile symbols to be explicit requests…

  6. Short-term visual deprivation does not enhance passive tactile spatial acuity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Wong

    Full Text Available An important unresolved question in sensory neuroscience is whether, and if so with what time course, tactile perception is enhanced by visual deprivation. In three experiments involving 158 normally sighted human participants, we assessed whether tactile spatial acuity improves with short-term visual deprivation over periods ranging from under 10 to over 110 minutes. We used an automated, precisely controlled two-interval forced-choice grating orientation task to assess each participant's ability to discern the orientation of square-wave gratings pressed against the stationary index finger pad of the dominant hand. A two-down one-up staircase (Experiment 1 or a Bayesian adaptive procedure (Experiments 2 and 3 was used to determine the groove width of the grating whose orientation each participant could reliably discriminate. The experiments consistently showed that tactile grating orientation discrimination does not improve with short-term visual deprivation. In fact, we found that tactile performance degraded slightly but significantly upon a brief period of visual deprivation (Experiment 1 and did not improve over periods of up to 110 minutes of deprivation (Experiments 2 and 3. The results additionally showed that grating orientation discrimination tends to improve upon repeated testing, and confirmed that women significantly outperform men on the grating orientation task. We conclude that, contrary to two recent reports but consistent with an earlier literature, passive tactile spatial acuity is not enhanced by short-term visual deprivation. Our findings have important theoretical and practical implications. On the theoretical side, the findings set limits on the time course over which neural mechanisms such as crossmodal plasticity may operate to drive sensory changes; on the practical side, the findings suggest that researchers who compare tactile acuity of blind and sighted participants should not blindfold the sighted participants.

  7. The influence of tactile cognitive maps on auditory space perception in sighted persons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessia Tonelli

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available We have recently shown that vision is important to improve spatial auditory cognition. In this study we investigate whether touch is as effective as vision to create a cognitive map of a soundscape. In particular we tested whether the creation of a mental representation of a room, obtained through tactile exploration of a 3D model, can influence the perception of a complex auditory task in sighted people. We tested two groups of blindfolded sighted people – one experimental and one control group – in an auditory space bisection task. In the first group the bisection task was performed three times: specifically, the participants explored with their hands the 3D tactile model of the room and were led along the perimeter of the room between the first and the second execution of the space bisection. Then, they were allowed to remove the blindfold for a few minutes and look at the room between the second and third execution of the space bisection. Instead, the control group repeated for two consecutive times the space bisection task without performing any environmental exploration in between. Considering the first execution as a baseline, we found an improvement in the precision after the tactile exploration of the 3D model. Interestingly, no additional gain was obtained when room observation followed the tactile exploration, suggesting that no additional gain was obtained by vision cues after spatial tactile cues were internalized. No improvement was found between the first and the second execution of the space bisection without environmental exploration in the control group, suggesting that the improvement was not due to task learning. Our results show that tactile information modulates the precision of an ongoing space auditory task as well as visual information. This suggests that cognitive maps elicited by touch may participate in cross-modal calibration and supra-modal representations of space that increase implicit knowledge about sound

  8. Spatial Asynchronous Visuo-Tactile Stimuli influence Ownership of Virtual Wings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Anastassia; Nilsson, Niels Chr.; Serafin, Stefania

    2018-01-01

    This poster describes a within-subject study of the virtual body ownership (VBO) illusion using anatomically similar but morphologically different body of a virtual bat. Participants experienced visuo-tactile stimulation of their arms while seeing an object touching the wing of the bat. The mapping...... between the real and the virtual touch points varied across three conditions: no spatial deviation between visual and tactile input, 50% deviation, and 70% deviation. The results suggest that the degree of experienced VBO varies across the conditions. The illusion was broken in the absence of visuo...

  9. Tactile Reflex Development Through Wing Tsun’s “Sticking Hands” Practice, by Jeff Webb

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeff Webb

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available It was the late Bruce Lee who first demonstrated Wing Tsun gongfu’s “sticking hands” (chi-sau exercise in the US, during the 1964 Long Beach International Karate Championships. Forty-four years later, very few outside of the art truly understand the purpose of chi-sau let alone how it develops tactile reflexes. This article will describe both the fundamental and complex methods of chi-sau training in detail. It will also explain the rationale and theories behind this method as well as discuss a variety of factors that can either improve or retard the acquisition of tactile reflexes.

  10. Pure associative tactile agnosia for the left hand: clinical and anatomo-functional correlations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veronelli, Laura; Ginex, Valeria; Dinacci, Daria; Cappa, Stefano F; Corbo, Massimo

    2014-09-01

    Associative tactile agnosia (TA) is defined as the inability to associate information about object sensory properties derived through tactile modality with previously acquired knowledge about object identity. The impairment is often described after a lesion involving the parietal cortex (Caselli, 1997; Platz, 1996). We report the case of SA, a right-handed 61-year-old man affected by first ever right hemispheric hemorrhagic stroke. The neurological examination was normal, excluding major somaesthetic and motor impairment; a brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) confirmed the presence of a right subacute hemorrhagic lesion limited to the post-central and supra-marginal gyri. A comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation detected a selective inability to name objects when handled with the left hand in the absence of other cognitive deficits. A series of experiments were conducted in order to assess each stage of tactile recognition processing using the same stimulus sets: materials, 3D geometrical shapes, real objects and letters. SA and seven matched controls underwent the same experimental tasks during four sessions in consecutive days. Tactile discrimination, recognition, pantomime, drawing after haptic exploration out of vision and tactile-visual matching abilities were assessed. In addition, we looked for the presence of a supra-modal impairment of spatial perception and of specific difficulties in programming exploratory movements during recognition. Tactile discrimination was intact for all the stimuli tested. In contrast, SA was able neither to recognize nor to pantomime real objects manipulated with the left hand out of vision, while he identified them with the right hand without hesitations. Tactile-visual matching was intact. Furthermore, SA was able to grossly reproduce the global shape in drawings but failed to extract details of objects after left-hand manipulation, and he could not identify objects after looking at his own drawings. This case

  11. Activation of the hippocampal complex during tactile maze solving in congenitally blind subjects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gagnon, Léa; Schneider, Fabien C; Siebner, Hartwig R

    2012-01-01

    Despite their lack of vision, congenitally blind subjects are able to build and manipulate cognitive maps for spatial navigation. It is assumed that they thereby rely more heavily on echolocation, proprioceptive signals and environmental cues such as ambient temperature and audition to compensate...... imaging (fMRI) in congenitally blind and blindfolded sighted participants while they navigated through a tactile multiple T-maze. Both groups learned the maze task at a similar pace. In blind participants, tactile maze navigation was associated with increased BOLD responses in the right hippocampus...

  12. Sensory prediction on a whiskered robot: A tactile analogy to "optic flow"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher L Schroeder

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available When an animal moves an array of sensors (e.g., the hand, the eye through the environment, spatial and temporal gradients of sensory data are related by the velocity of the moving sensory array. In vision, the relationship between spatial and temporal brightness gradients is quantified in the optical flow equation. In the present work, we suggest an analog to optical flow for the rodent vibrissal (whisker array, in which the perceptual intensity that flows over the array is bending moment. Changes in bending moment are directly related to radial object distance, defined as the distance between the base of a whisker and the point of contact with the object. Using both simulations and a 1x5 array (row of artificial whiskers, we demonstrate that local object curvature can be estimated based on differences in radial distance across the array. We then develop two algorithms, both based on tactile flow, to predict the future contact points that will be obtained as the whisker array translates along the object. The translation of the robotic whisker array represents the rat's head velocity. The first algorithm uses a calculation of the local object slope, while the second uses a calculation of the local object curvature. Both algorithms successfully predict future contact points for simple surfaces. The algorithm based on curvature was found to more accurately predict future contact points as surfaces became more irregular. We quantify the inter-related effects of whisker spacing and the object’s spatial frequencies, and examine the issues that arise in the presence of real-world noise, friction, and slip.

  13. I Show You How I Like You: Emotional Human-Robot Interaction through Facial Expression and Tactile Stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fredslund, Jakob; Cañamero, Lola D.

    2001-01-01

    We report work on a LEGO robot capable of displaying several emo- tional expressions in response to physical contact. Our motivation has been to explore believable emotional exchanges to achieve plausible interaction with a simple robot. We have worked toward this goal in two ways. First......, acknowledging the importance of physical manipulation in children's inter- actions, interaction with the robot is through tactile stimulation; the various kinds of stimulation that can elicit the robot's emotions are grounded in a model of emotion activation based on different stimulation patterns. Sec- ond......, emotional states need to be clearly conveyed. We have drawn inspira- tion from theories of human basic emotions with associated universal facial expressions, which we have implemented in a caricaturized face. We have conducted experiments on both children and adults to assess the recogniz- ability...

  14. Manual command component with tactile and/or kinesthetic feedback; Organe de commande manuelle a retour d`information tactile et/ou kinesthesique

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Foumier, R.

    1995-05-19

    The invention concerns a manual command component designed to be use by a human hand in order to control a slave system, with a tactile and/or kinesthetic feedback. It is composed by a handle and by piece(s) for the feedback. The handle contains a captor to signalize the move and the speed. The signals are transmitted to the slave system. The later send feedbacks which are transformed in a couple for the handle. (TEC).

  15. Analysis of lesions in patients with unilateral tactile agnosia using cytoarchitectonic probabilistic maps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hömke, Lars; Amunts, Katrin; Bönig, Lutz; Fretz, Christian; Binkofski, Ferdinand; Zilles, Karl; Weder, Bruno

    2009-05-01

    We propose a novel methodical approach to lesion analyses involving high-resolution MR images in combination with probabilistic cytoarchitectonic maps. 3D-MR images of the whole brain and the manually segmented lesion mask are spatially normalized to the reference brain of a stereotaxic probabilistic cytoarchitectonic atlas using a multiscale registration algorithm based on an elastic model. The procedure is demonstrated in three patients suffering from aperceptive tactile agnosia of the right hand due to chronic infarction of the left parietal cortex. Patient 1 presents a lesion in areas of the postcentral sulcus, Patient 3 in areas of the superior parietal lobule and adjacent intraparietal sulcus, and Patient 2 lesions in both regions. On the basis of neurobehavioral data, we conjectured degradation of sequential elementary sensory information processing within the postcentral gyrus, impeding texture recognition in Patients 1 and 2, and disturbed kinaesthetic information processing in the posterior parietal lobe, causing degraded shape recognition in the patients 2 and 3. The involvement of Brodmann areas 4a, 4p, 3a, 3b, 1, 2, and areas IP1 and IP2 of the intraparietal sulcus was assessed in terms of the voxel overlap between the spatially transformed lesion masks and the 50%-isocontours of the cytoarchitectonic maps. The disruption of the critical cytoarchitectonic areas and the impaired subfunctions, texture and shape recognition, relate as conjectured above. We conclude that the proposed method represents a promising approach to hypothesis-driven lesion analyses, yielding lesion-function correlates based on a cytoarchitectonic model. Finally, the lesion-function correlates are validated by functional imaging reference data. (c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. Tactile pavement for guiding walking direction: An assessment of heading direction and gait stability.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pluyter, N.; de Wit, L.P.; Bruijn, S.M.; Plaisier, M.A.

    2015-01-01

    For maintaining heading direction while walking we heavily rely on vision. Therefore, walking in the absence of vision or with visual attention directed elsewhere potentially leads to dangerous situations. Here we investigated whether tactile information from the feet can be used as a (partial)

  17. Spatially digitized tactile pressure sensors with tunable sensitivity and sensing range.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Eunsuk; Sul, Onejae; Hwang, Soonhyung; Cho, Joonhyung; Chun, Hyunsuk; Kim, Hongjun; Lee, Seung-Beck

    2014-10-24

    When developing an electronic skin with touch sensation, an array of tactile pressure sensors with various ranges of pressure detection need to be integrated. This requires low noise, highly reliable sensors with tunable sensing characteristics. We demonstrate the operation of tactile pressure sensors that utilize the spatial distribution of contact electrodes to detect various ranges of tactile pressures. The device consists of a suspended elastomer diaphragm, with a carbon nanotube thin-film on the bottom, which makes contact with the electrodes on the substrate with applied pressure. The electrodes separated by set distances become connected in sequence with tactile pressure, enabling consecutive electrodes to produce a signal. Thus, the pressure is detected not by how much of a signal is produced but by which of the electrodes is registering an output. By modulating the diaphragm diameter, and suspension height, it was possible to tune the pressure sensitivity and sensing range. Also, adding a fingerprint ridge structure enabled the sensor to detect the periodicity of sub-millimeter grating patterns on a silicon wafer.

  18. Tactile Sensitivity and Braille Reading in People with Early Blindness and Late Blindness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oshima, Kensuke; Arai, Tetsuya; Ichihara, Shigeru; Nakano, Yasushi

    2014-01-01

    Introduction: The inability to read quickly can be a disadvantage throughout life. This study focused on the associations of braille reading fluency and individual factors, such as the age at onset of blindness and number of years reading braille, and the tactile sensitivity of people with early and late blindness. The relationship between reading…

  19. Blind Students' Learning of Probability through the Use of a Tactile Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vita, Aida Carvalho; Kataoka, Verônica Yumi

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this paper is to discuss how blind students learn basic concepts of probability using the tactile model proposed by Vita (2012). Among the activities were part of the teaching sequence "Jefferson's Random Walk", in which students built a tree diagram (using plastic trays, foam cards, and toys), and pictograms in 3D…

  20. Coalition Warfare Program Tactile Situation Awareness System for Aviation Applications: Simulator Flight Test

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-01

    David Myers1 Timothy Gowen2 Angus Rupert3 Ben Lawson3 Justin Dailey3,4 1Chesapeake Technology International 2Naval Aviation Center for... Angus Rupert of the USAARL. The algorithm is described in “Configuration Parameters for the Tactile Situation Awareness System (TSAS)” dated July 2010

  1. Self Touch to Touch Others: Designing the Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, G.; Darriba Frederiks, A.; van Dijk, B.; Kröse, B.; Heylen, D.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present the concept and initial design stages of the TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch). The TaSST consists of a soft pressure-sensitive input layer, and an output layer containing vibration motors. A touch to ones own sleeve is felt as a vibration on the sleeve of another

  2. Self touch to touch others : designing the tactile sleeve for social touch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huisman, Gijs; Darriba Frederiks, Aduén; Heylen, Dirk; Van Dijk, Betsy; Kröse, Ben

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present the concept and initial design stages of the TaSST (Tactile Sleeve for Social Touch). The TaSST consists of a soft pressure-sensitive input layer, and an output layer containing vibration motors. A touch to ones own sleeve is felt as a vibration on the sleeve of another

  3. The effect of perceptual load on tactile spatial attention: Evidence from event-related potentials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gherri, Elena; Berreby, Fiona

    2017-10-15

    To investigate whether tactile spatial attention is modulated by perceptual load, behavioural and electrophysiological measures were recorded during two spatial cuing tasks in which the difficulty of the target/non-target discrimination was varied (High and Low load tasks). Moreover, to study whether attentional modulations by load are sensitive to the availability of visual information, the High and Low load tasks were carried out under both illuminated and darkness conditions. ERPs to cued and uncued non-targets were compared as a function of task (High vs. Low load) and illumination condition (Light vs. Darkness). Results revealed that the locus of tactile spatial attention was determined by a complex interaction between perceptual load and illumination conditions during sensory-specific stages of processing. In the Darkness, earlier effects of attention were present in the High load than in the Low load task, while no difference between tasks emerged in the Light. By contrast, increased load was associated with stronger attention effects during later post-perceptual processing stages regardless of illumination conditions. These findings demonstrate that ERP correlates of tactile spatial attention are strongly affected by the perceptual load of the target/non-target discrimination. However, differences between illumination conditions show that the impact of load on tactile attention depends on the presence of visual information. Perceptual load is one of the many factors that contribute to determine the effects of spatial selectivity in touch. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Fabrication of a thin-film capacitive force sensor array for tactile feedback in robotic surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paydar, Omeed H; Wottawa, Christopher R; Fan, Richard E; Dutson, Erik P; Grundfest, Warren S; Culjat, Martin O; Candler, Rob N

    2012-01-01

    Although surgical robotic systems provide several advantages over conventional minimally invasive techniques, they are limited by a lack of tactile feedback. Recent research efforts have successfully integrated tactile feedback components onto surgical robotic systems, and have shown significant improvement to surgical control during in vitro experiments. The primary barrier to the adoption of tactile feedback in clinical use is the unavailability of suitable force sensing technologies. This paper describes the design and fabrication of a thin-film capacitive force sensor array that is intended for integration with tactile feedback systems. This capacitive force sensing technology could provide precise, high-sensitivity, real-time responses to both static and dynamic loads. Capacitive force sensors were designed to operate with optimal sensitivity and dynamic range in the range of forces typical in minimally invasive surgery (0-40 N). Initial results validate the fabrication of these capacitive force-sensing arrays. We report 16.3 pF and 146 pF for 1-mm(2) and 9-mm(2) capacitive areas, respectively, whose values are within 3% of theoretical predictions.

  5. Prefrontal cortex and somatosensory cortex in tactile crossmodal association: an independent component analysis of ERP recordings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yixuan Ku

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Our previous studies on scalp-recorded event-related potentials (ERPs showed that somatosensory N140 evoked by a tactile vibration in working memory tasks was enhanced when human subjects expected a coming visual stimulus that had been paired with the tactile stimulus. The results suggested that such enhancement represented the cortical activities involved in tactile-visual crossmodal association. In the present study, we further hypothesized that the enhancement represented the neural activities in somatosensory and frontal cortices in the crossmodal association. By applying independent component analysis (ICA to the ERP data, we found independent components (ICs located in the medial prefrontal cortex (around the anterior cingulate cortex, ACC and the primary somatosensory cortex (SI. The activity represented by the IC in SI cortex showed enhancement in expectation of the visual stimulus. Such differential activity thus suggested the participation of SI cortex in the task-related crossmodal association. Further, the coherence analysis and the Granger causality spectral analysis of the ICs showed that SI cortex appeared to cooperate with ACC in attention and perception of the tactile stimulus in crossmodal association. The results of our study support with new evidence an important idea in cortical neurophysiology: higher cognitive operations develop from the modality-specific sensory cortices (in the present study, SI cortex that are involved in sensation and perception of various stimuli.

  6. Visual and tactile interfaces for bi-directional human robot communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Daniel; Lackey, Stephanie; Reinerman-Jones, Lauren; Hudson, Irwin

    2013-05-01

    Seamless integration of unmanned and systems and Soldiers in the operational environment requires robust communication capabilities. Multi-Modal Communication (MMC) facilitates achieving this goal due to redundancy and levels of communication superior to single mode interaction using auditory, visual, and tactile modalities. Visual signaling using arm and hand gestures is a natural method of communication between people. Visual signals standardized within the U.S. Army Field Manual and in use by Soldiers provide a foundation for developing gestures for human to robot communication. Emerging technologies using Inertial Measurement Units (IMU) enable classification of arm and hand gestures for communication with a robot without the requirement of line-of-sight needed by computer vision techniques. These devices improve the robustness of interpreting gestures in noisy environments and are capable of classifying signals relevant to operational tasks. Closing the communication loop between Soldiers and robots necessitates them having the ability to return equivalent messages. Existing visual signals from robots to humans typically require highly anthropomorphic features not present on military vehicles. Tactile displays tap into an unused modality for robot to human communication. Typically used for hands-free navigation and cueing, existing tactile display technologies are used to deliver equivalent visual signals from the U.S. Army Field Manual. This paper describes ongoing research to collaboratively develop tactile communication methods with Soldiers, measure classification accuracy of visual signal interfaces, and provides an integration example including two robotic platforms.

  7. Anticipation increases tactile stimulus processing in the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ede, Freek; de Lange, Floris P; Maris, Eric

    2014-10-01

    Stimulus anticipation improves perception. To account for this improvement, we investigated how stimulus processing is altered by anticipation. In contrast to a large body of previous work, we employed a demanding perceptual task and investigated sensory responses that occur beyond early evoked activity in contralateral primary sensory areas: Stimulus-induced modulations of neural oscillations. For this, we recorded magnetoencephalography in 19 humans while they performed a cued tactile identification task involving the identification of either a proximal or a distal stimulation on the fingertips. We varied the cue-target interval between 0 and 1000 ms such that tactile targets occurred at various degrees of anticipation. This allowed us to investigate the influence of anticipation on stimulus processing in a parametric fashion. We observed that anticipation increases the stimulus-induced response (suppression of beta-band oscillations) originating from the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex. This occurs in the period in which the tactile memory trace is analyzed and is correlated with the anticipation-induced improvement in tactile perception. We propose that this ipsilateral response indicates distributed processing across bilateral primary sensory cortices, of which the extent increases with anticipation. This constitutes a new and potentially important mechanism contributing to perception and its improvement following anticipation. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. An Outdoor Navigation System for Blind Pedestrians Using GPS and Tactile-Foot Feedback

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramiro Velázquez

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel, wearable navigation system for visually impaired and blind pedestrians that combines a global positioning system (GPS for user outdoor localization and tactile-foot stimulation for information presentation. Real-time GPS data provided by a smartphone are processed by dedicated navigation software to determine the directions to a destination. Navigational directions are then encoded as vibrations and conveyed to the user via a tactile display that inserts into the shoe. The experimental results showed that users were capable of recognizing with high accuracy the tactile feedback provided to their feet. The preliminary tests conducted in outdoor locations involved two blind users who were guided along 380–420 m predetermined pathways, while sharing the space with other pedestrians and facing typical urban obstacles. The subjects successfully reached the target destinations. The results suggest that the proposed system enhances independent, safe navigation of blind pedestrians and show the potential of tactile-foot stimulation in assistive devices.

  9. Demonstrating the application of dielectric polymer actuators for tactile feedback in a mobile consumer device.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moessinger, H.M.; Brokken, D.

    2010-01-01

    User interfaces of mobile consumer devices are becoming increasingly complex. To address this complexity touch-screen interfaces are used. They allow flexible design of the user interfaces but lack the tactile feedback mechanical buttons provide, limiting ease of use. Dielectric Elastomer Actuator

  10. Integration of tactile input across fingers in a patient with finger agnosia.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Anema, H.A.; Overvliet, K.E.; Smeets, J.B.J.; Brenner, E.; Dijkerman, H.C.

    2011-01-01

    Finger agnosia has been described as an inability to explicitly individuate between the fingers, which is possibly due to fused neural representations of these fingers. Hence, are patients with finger agnosia unable to keep tactile information perceived over several fingers separate? Here, we tested

  11. Creative and Tactile Astronomy: Exploring the Universe Using All the Senses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Isabel; Canas, Lina; Alexander, Alison; Wiltsher, Ruth

    2015-01-01

    Creative and Tactile Astronomy is an educational project developed by English and Portuguese teachers. Isabel Borges and Lina Canas from Portugal and Alison Alexander and Ruth Wiltsher from the United Kingdom met for the first time at the 2013 Science on Stage Festival in Slubice-Oder, on the border between Germany and Poland. As a consequence of…

  12. Feeling Critically: A Report on ‘The Victorian Tactile Imagination’ Conference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Wood

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This short piece reflects upon the way in which the themes of ‘The Victorian Tactile Imagination’ conference impacted upon participants and suggested a more ‘feeling’ direction for scholarship: an approach that cultivates respect for emotional intuition in critical practice while remaining sensitive to the challenges and limitations of such interpretations.

  13. Short-term memory for spatial configurations in the tactile modality: a comparison with vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, Delphine; Monnier, Catherine

    2009-11-01

    This study investigates the role of acquisition constraints on the short-term retention of spatial configurations in the tactile modality in comparison with vision. It tests whether the sequential processing of information inherent to the tactile modality could account for limitation in short-term memory span for tactual-spatial information. In addition, this study investigates developmental aspects of short-term memory for tactual- and visual-spatial configurations. A total of 144 child and adult participants were assessed for their memory span in three different conditions: tactual, visual, and visual with a limited field of view. The results showed lower tactual-spatial memory span than visual-spatial, regardless of age. However, differences in memory span observed between the tactile and visual modalities vanished when the visual processing of information occurred within a limited field. These results provide evidence for an impact of acquisition constraints on the retention of spatial information in the tactile modality in both childhood and adulthood.

  14. TMS of the occipital cortex induces tactile sensations in the fingers of blind Braille readers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ptito, M; Fumal, A; de Noordhout, A Martens

    2008-01-01

    . The number of cortical sites inducing tactile sensations appeared to be related to the number of hours of Braille reading per day, Braille reading speed and dexterity. These data, taken in conjunction with previous anatomical, behavioural and functional imaging results, suggest the presence of a polysynaptic...

  15. Perceptual grouping over time within and across auditory and tactile modalities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I-Fan Lin

    Full Text Available In auditory scene analysis, population separation and temporal coherence have been proposed to explain how auditory features are grouped together and streamed over time. The present study investigated whether these two theories can be applied to tactile streaming and whether temporal coherence theory can be applied to crossmodal streaming. The results show that synchrony detection between two tones/taps at different frequencies/locations became difficult when one of the tones/taps was embedded in a perceptual stream. While the taps applied to the same location were streamed over time, the taps applied to different locations were not. This observation suggests that tactile stream formation can be explained by population-separation theory. On the other hand, temporally coherent auditory stimuli at different frequencies were streamed over time, but temporally coherent tactile stimuli applied to different locations were not. When there was within-modality streaming, temporally coherent auditory stimuli and tactile stimuli were not streamed over time, either. This observation suggests the limitation of temporal coherence theory when it is applied to perceptual grouping over time.

  16. Tactile acuity and lumbopelvic motor control in patients with back pain and healthy controls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luomajoki, H; Moseley, G L

    2011-04-01

    Voluntary lumbopelvic control is compromised in patients with back pain. Loss of proprioceptive acuity is one contributor to decreased control. Several reasons for decreased proprioceptive acuity have been proposed, but the integrity of cortical body maps has been overlooked. We investigated whether tactile acuity, a clear clinical signature of primary sensory cortex organisation, relates to lumbopelvic control in people with back pain. Forty-five patients with back pain and 45 age- and sex-matched healthy controls participated in this cross-sectional study. Tactile acuity at the back was assessed using two-point discrimination (TPD) threshold in vertical and horizontal directions. Voluntary motor control was assessed using an established battery of clinical tests. Patients performed worse on the voluntary lumbopelvic tasks than healthy controls did (p<0.001). TPD threshold was larger in patients (mean (SD)=61 (13) mm) than in healthy controls (44 (10) mm). Moreover, larger TPD threshold was positively related to worse performance on the voluntary lumbopelvic tasks (Pearson's r=0.49; p<0.001). Tactile acuity, a clear clinical signature of primary sensory cortex organisation, relates to voluntary lumbopelvic control. This relationship raises the possibility that the former contributes to the latter, in which case training tactile acuity may aid recovery and assist in achieving normal motor performance after back injury.

  17. Impact of Tactile Stimulation on Neurobehavioral Development of Premature Infants in Assiut City

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayed, Atyat Mohammed Hassan; Youssef, Magda Mohamed E.; Hassanein, Farouk El-Sayed; Mobarak, Amal Ahmed

    2015-01-01

    Objective: To assess impact of tactile stimulation on neurobehavioral development of premature infants in Assiut City. Design: Quasi-experimental research design. Setting: The study was conducted in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Assiut University Children Hospital, Assiut General Hospital, Health Insurance Hospital (ElMabarah Hospital) and…

  18. Escaping blood-fed malaria mosquitoes minimize tactile detection without compromising on take-off speed

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Muijres, F.T.; Chang, S.W.; Veen, van W.G.; Spitzen, J.; Biemans, B.T.; Koehl, M.A.R.; Dudley, R.

    2017-01-01

    To escape after taking a blood meal, a mosquito must exert forces sufficiently high to take off when carrying a load roughly equal to its body weight, while simultaneously avoiding detection by minimizing tactile signals exerted on the host’s skin. We studied this trade-off between escape speed and

  19. Audio-tactile stimuli to improve health and well-being

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dijk, Esko O.; van Erp, Johannes Bernardus Fransiscus; Kuyper, Ewoud; van Wolferen, Gerard; Nijholt, Antinus; Dijk, Esko O.; Lemmens, Paul M.C.

    2010-01-01

    From literature and through common experience it is known that stimulation of the tactile (touch) sense or auditory (hearing) sense can be used to improve people's health and well-being. For example, to make people relax, feel better, sleep better or feel comforted. In this position paper we propose

  20. A flexible tactile-feedback touch screen using transparent ferroelectric polymer film vibrators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ju, Woo-Eon; Moon, Yong-Ju; Park, Cheon-Ho; Choi, Seung Tae

    2014-01-01

    To provide tactile feedback on flexible touch screens, transparent relaxor ferroelectric polymer film vibrators were designed and fabricated in this study. The film vibrator can be integrated underneath a transparent cover film or glass, and can also produce acoustic waves that cause a tactile sensation on human fingertips. Poly(vinylidene fluoride-trifluoroethylene-chlorotrifluoroethylene) [P(VDF-TrFE-CTFE)] polymer was used as the relaxor ferroelectric polymer because it produces a large strain under applied electric fields, shows a fast response, and has excellent optical transparency. The natural frequency of this tactile-feedback touch screen was designed to be around 200–240 Hz, at which the haptic perception of human fingertips is the most sensitive; therefore, the resonance of the touch screen at its natural frequency provides maximum haptic sensation. A multilayered relaxor ferroelectric polymer film vibrator was also demonstrated to provide the same vibration power at reduced voltage. The flexible P(VDF-TrFE-CTFE) film vibrators developed in this study are expected to provide tactile sensation not only in large-area flat panel displays, but also in flexible displays and touch screens. (papers)

  1. Restoring tactile awareness through the rubber hand illusion in cervical spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenggenhager, Bigna; Scivoletto, Giorgio; Molinari, Marco; Pazzaglia, Mariella

    2013-10-01

    Bodily sensations are an important component of corporeal awareness. Spinal cord injury can leave affected body parts insentient and unmoving, leading to specific disturbances in the mental representation of one's own body and the sense of self. Here, we explored how illusions induced by multisensory stimulation influence immediate sensory signals and tactile awareness in patients with spinal cord injuries. The rubber hand illusion paradigm was applied to 2 patients with chronic and complete spinal cord injury of the sixth cervical spine, with severe somatosensory impairments in 2 of 5 fingers. Both patients experienced a strong illusion of ownership of the rubber hand during synchronous, but not asynchronous, stroking. They also, spontaneously reported basic tactile sensations in their previously numb fingers. Tactile awareness from seeing the rubber hand was enhanced by progressively increasing the stimulation duration. Multisensory illusions directly and specifically modulate the reemergence of sensory memories and enhance tactile sensation, despite (or as a result of) prior deafferentation. When sensory inputs are lost, and are later illusorily regained, the brain updates a coherent body image even several years after the body has become permanently unable to feel. This particular example of neural plasticity represents a significant opportunity to strengthen the sense of the self and the feelings of embodiment in patients with spinal cord injury.

  2. Tactile Scanning and Memory for a Spatial Display by Blind Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berla, Edward P.

    1981-01-01

    Thirty-six braille students (grades 4 through 12) were asked to inspect a tactile display consisting of nine removable symbols. Students in the lower grades benefited most from the systematic searching training and were superior to the control group in the same grades. (Author)

  3. The Advantage of Encoding Tactile Information for a Woman with Congenital Deaf-Blindness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Janssen, M.J.; Nota, S.J.; Eling, P.A.T.M.; Ruijssenaars, A.J.J.M.

    2007-01-01

    Parents, caregivers and teachers feel a strong need to learn more about tactile information processing of deaf-blind persons, primarily in order to be able to offer adequate intervention strategies in their daily interactions and activities. The present study investigates perception and memory of

  4. TacTool: a tactile rapid prototyping tool for visual interfaces

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keyson, D.V.; Tang, H.K.; Anzai, Y.; Ogawa, K.; Mori, H.

    1995-01-01

    This paper describes the TacTool development tool and input device for designing and evaluating visual user interfaces with tactile feedback. TacTool is currently supported by the IPO trackball with force feedback in the x and y directions. The tool is designed to enable both the designer and the

  5. The Acquisition and Extinction of Fear of Painful Touch: a Novel Tactile Fear Conditioning Paradigm

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Biggs, Emma E; Meulders, Ann; Kaas, Amanda L; Goebel, R.; Vlaeyen, Johan W S

    2017-01-01

    Fear of touch, due to allodynia and spontaneous pain, is not well-understood. Experimental methods to advance this topic are lacking, and therefore we propose a novel tactile conditioning paradigm. Seventy-six pain-free participants underwent acquisition in both a predictable and unpredictable pain

  6. Can you see what you feel? Color and folding properties affect visual-tactile material discrimination of fabrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Bei; Bi, Wenyan; Jia, Xiaodan; Wei, Hanhan; Adelson, Edward H

    2016-01-01

    Humans can often estimate tactile properties of objects from vision alone. For example, during online shopping, we can often infer material properties of clothing from images and judge how the material would feel against our skin. What visual information is important for tactile perception? Previous studies in material perception have focused on measuring surface appearance, such as gloss and roughness, and using verbal reports of material attributes and categories. However, in real life, predicting tactile properties of an object might not require accurate verbal descriptions of its surface attributes or categories. In this paper, we use tactile perception as ground truth to measure visual material perception. Using fabrics as our stimuli, we measure how observers match what they see (photographs of fabric samples) with what they feel (physical fabric samples). The data shows that color has a significant main effect in that removing color significantly reduces accuracy, especially when the images contain 3-D folds. We also find that images of draped fabrics, which revealed 3-D shape information, achieved better matching accuracy than images with flattened fabrics. The data shows a strong interaction between color and folding conditions on matching accuracy, suggesting that, in 3-D folding conditions, the visual system takes advantage of chromatic gradients to infer tactile properties but not in flattened conditions. Together, using a visual-tactile matching task, we show that humans use folding and color information in matching the visual and tactile properties of fabrics.

  7. Tactile Stimulation of the Face and the Production of Facial Expressions Activate Neurons in the Primate Amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosher, Clayton P; Zimmerman, Prisca E; Fuglevand, Andrew J; Gothard, Katalin M

    2016-01-01

    The majority of neurophysiological studies that have explored the role of the primate amygdala in the evaluation of social signals have relied on visual stimuli such as images of facial expressions. Vision, however, is not the only sensory modality that carries social signals. Both humans and nonhuman primates exchange emotionally meaningful social signals through touch. Indeed, social grooming in nonhuman primates and caressing touch in humans is critical for building lasting and reassuring social bonds. To determine the role of the amygdala in processing touch, we recorded the responses of single neurons in the macaque amygdala while we applied tactile stimuli to the face. We found that one-third of the recorded neurons responded to tactile stimulation. Although we recorded exclusively from the right amygdala, the receptive fields of 98% of the neurons were bilateral. A fraction of these tactile neurons were monitored during the production of facial expressions and during facial movements elicited occasionally by touch stimuli. Firing rates arising during the production of facial expressions were similar to those elicited by tactile stimulation. In a subset of cells, combining tactile stimulation with facial movement further augmented the firing rates. This suggests that tactile neurons in the amygdala receive input from skin mechanoceptors that are activated by touch and by compressions and stretches of the facial skin during the contraction of the underlying muscles. Tactile neurons in the amygdala may play a role in extracting the valence of touch stimuli and/or monitoring the facial expressions of self during social interactions.

  8. Tactile-dependant corticomotor facilitation is influenced by discrimination performance in seniors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tremblay François

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Active contraction leads to facilitation of motor responses evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS. In small hand muscles, motor facilitation is known to be also influenced by the nature of the task. Recently, we showed that corticomotor facilitation was selectively enhanced when young participants actively discriminated tactile symbols with the tip of their index or little finger. This tactile-dependant motor facilitation reflected, for the large part, attentional influences associated with performing tactile discrimination, since execution of a concomitant distraction task abolished facilitation. In the present report, we extend these observations to examine the influence of age on the ability to produce extra motor facilitation when the hand is used for sensory exploration. Methods Corticomotor excitability was tested in 16 healthy seniors (58-83 years while they actively moved their right index finger over a surface under two task conditions. In the tactile discrimination (TD condition, participants attended to the spatial location of two tactile symbols on the explored surface, while in the non discrimination (ND condition, participants simply moved their finger over a blank surface. Changes in amplitude, in latency and in the silent period (SP duration were measured from recordings of motor evoked potentials (MEP in the right first dorsal interosseous muscle in response to TMS of the left motor cortex. Results Healthy seniors exhibited widely varying levels of performance with the TD task, older age being associated with lower accuracy and vice-versa. Large inter-individual variations were also observed in terms of tactile-specific corticomotor facilitation. Regrouping seniors into higher (n = 6 and lower performance groups (n = 10 revealed a significant task by performance interaction. This latter interaction reflected differences between higher and lower performance groups; tactile-related facilitation being

  9. A Computational Model of a Descending Mechanosensory Pathway Involved in Active Tactile Sensing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan M Ache

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Many animals, including humans, rely on active tactile sensing to explore the environment and negotiate obstacles, especially in the dark. Here, we model a descending neural pathway that mediates short-latency proprioceptive information from a tactile sensor on the head to thoracic neural networks. We studied the nocturnal stick insect Carausius morosus, a model organism for the study of adaptive locomotion, including tactually mediated reaching movements. Like mammals, insects need to move their tactile sensors for probing the environment. Cues about sensor position and motion are therefore crucial for the spatial localization of tactile contacts and the coordination of fast, adaptive motor responses. Our model explains how proprioceptive information about motion and position of the antennae, the main tactile sensors in insects, can be encoded by a single type of mechanosensory afferents. Moreover, it explains how this information is integrated and mediated to thoracic neural networks by a diverse population of descending interneurons (DINs. First, we quantified responses of a DIN population to changes in antennal position, motion and direction of movement. Using principal component (PC analysis, we find that only two PCs account for a large fraction of the variance in the DIN response properties. We call the two-dimensional space spanned by these PCs 'coding-space' because it captures essential features of the entire DIN population. Second, we model the mechanoreceptive input elements of this descending pathway, a population of proprioceptive mechanosensory hairs monitoring deflection of the antennal joints. Finally, we propose a computational framework that can model the response properties of all important DIN types, using the hair field model as its only input. This DIN model is validated by comparison of tuning characteristics, and by mapping the modelled neurons into the two-dimensional coding-space of the real DIN population. This

  10. Toward a tactile language for human-robot interaction: two studies of tacton learning and performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, Daniel J; Reinerman-Jones, Lauren E; Matthews, Gerald

    2015-05-01

    Two experiments were performed to investigate the feasibility for robot-to-human communication of a tactile language using a lexicon of standardized tactons (tactile icons) within a sentence. Improvements in autonomous systems technology and a growing demand within military operations are spurring interest in communication via vibrotactile displays. Tactile communication may become an important element of human-robot interaction (HRI), but it requires the development of messaging capabilities approaching the communication power of the speech and visual signals used in the military. In Experiment 1 (N = 38), we trained participants to identify sets of directional, dynamic, and static tactons and tested performance and workload following training. In Experiment 2 (N = 76), we introduced an extended training procedure and tested participants' ability to correctly identify two-tacton phrases. We also investigated the impact of multitasking on performance and workload. Individual difference factors were assessed. Experiment 1 showed that participants found dynamic and static tactons difficult to learn, but the enhanced training procedure in Experiment 2 produced competency in performance for all tacton categories. Participants in the latter study also performed well on two-tacton phrases and when multitasking. However, some deficits in performance and elevation of workload were observed. Spatial ability predicted some aspects of performance in both studies. Participants may be trained to identify both single tactons and tacton phrases, demonstrating the feasibility of developing a tactile language for HRI. Tactile communication may be incorporated into multi-modal communication systems for HRI. It also has potential for human-human communication in challenging environments. © 2014, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.

  11. Transfer of tactile perceptual learning to untrained neighboring fingers reflects natural use relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempsey-Jones, Harriet; Harrar, Vanessa; Oliver, Jonathan; Johansen-Berg, Heidi; Spence, Charles; Makin, Tamar R

    2016-03-01

    Tactile learning transfers from trained to untrained fingers in a pattern that reflects overlap between the representations of fingers in the somatosensory system (e.g., neurons with multifinger receptive fields). While physical proximity on the body is known to determine the topography of somatosensory representations, tactile coactivation is also an established organizing principle of somatosensory topography. In this study we investigated whether tactile coactivation, induced by habitual inter-finger cooperative use (use pattern), shapes inter-finger overlap. To this end, we used psychophysics to compare the transfer of tactile learning from the middle finger to its adjacent fingers. This allowed us to compare transfer to two fingers that are both physically and cortically adjacent to the middle finger but have differing use patterns. Specifically, the middle finger is used more frequently with the ring than with the index finger. We predicted this should lead to greater representational overlap between the former than the latter pair. Furthermore, this difference in overlap should be reflected in differential learning transfer from the middle to index vs. ring fingers. Subsequently, we predicted temporary learning-related changes in the middle finger's representation (e.g., cortical magnification) would cause transient interference in perceptual thresholds of the ring, but not the index, finger. Supporting this, longitudinal analysis revealed a divergence where learning transfer was fast to the index finger but relatively delayed to the ring finger. Our results support the theory that tactile coactivation patterns between digits affect their topographic relationships. Our findings emphasize how action shapes perception and somatosensory organization. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  12. When action is not enough: tool-use reveals tactile-dependent access to Body Schema.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardinali, L; Brozzoli, C; Urquizar, C; Salemme, R; Roy, A C; Farnè, A

    2011-11-01

    Proper motor control of our own body implies a reliable representation of body parts. This information is supposed to be stored in the Body Schema (BS), a body representation that appears separate from a more perceptual body representation, the Body Image (BI). The dissociation between BS for action and BI for perception, originally based on neuropsychological evidence, has recently become the focus of behavioural studies in physiological conditions. By inducing the rubber hand illusion in healthy participants, Kammers et al. (2009) showed perceptual changes attributable to the BI to which the BS, as indexed via motor tasks, was immune. To more definitively support the existence of dissociable body representations in physiological conditions, here we tested for the opposite dissociation, namely, whether a tool-use paradigm would induce a functional update of the BS (via a motor localization task) without affecting the BI (via a perceptual localization task). Healthy subjects were required to localize three anatomical landmarks on their right arm, before and after using the same arm to control a tool. In addition to this classical task-dependency approach, we assessed whether preferential access to the BS could also depend upon the way positional information about forearm targets is provided, to subsequently execute the same task. To this aim, participants performed either verbally or tactually driven versions of the motor and perceptual localization tasks. Results showed that both the motor and perceptual tasks were sensitive to the update of the forearm representation, but only when the localization task (perceptual or motor) was driven by a tactile input. This pattern reveals that the motor output is not sufficient per se, but has to be coupled with tactually mediated information to guarantee access to the BS. These findings shade a new light on the action-perception models of body representations and underlie how functional plasticity may be a useful tool to

  13. Abilities in tactile discrimination of textures in adult rats exposed to enriched or impoverished environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgeon, Stéphanie; Xerri, Christian; Coq, Jacques-Olivier

    2004-08-12

    In previous studies, we have shown that housing in enriched environment for about 3 months after weaning improved the topographic organization and decreased the size of the receptive fields (RFs) located on the glabrous skin surfaces in the forepaw maps of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) in rats [Exp. Brain Res. 121 (1998) 191]. In contrast, housing in impoverished environment induced a degradation of the SI forepaw representation, characterized by topographic disruptions, a reduction of the cutaneous forepaw area and an enlargement of the glabrous RFs [Exp. Brain Res. 129 (1999) 518]. Based on these two studies, we postulated that these representational alterations could underlie changes in haptic perception. Therefore, the present study was aimed at determining the influence of housing conditions on the rat's abilities in tactile texture discrimination. After a 2-month exposure to enriched or impoverished environments, rats were trained to perform a discrimination task during locomotion on floorboards of different roughness. At the end of every daily behavioral session, rats were replaced in their respective housing environment. Rats had to discriminate homogeneous (low roughness) from heterogeneous floorboards (combination of two different roughness levels). To determine the maximum performance in texture discrimination, the roughness contrast of the heterogeneous texture was gradually reduced, so that homogeneous and heterogeneous floorboards became harder to differentiate. We found that the enriched rats learned the first steps of the behavioral task faster than the impoverished rats, whereas both groups exhibited similar performances in texture discrimination. An individual "predilection" for either homogeneous or heterogeneous floorboards, presumably reflecting a behavioral strategy, seemed to account for the absence of differences in haptic discrimination between groups. The sensory experience depending on the rewarded texture discrimination task

  14. Tactile Approaches for Teaching Blind and Visually-Impaired Students in the Geosciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Permenter, J. L.; Runyon, C.

    2003-12-01

    Hearing and touch are perhaps the two most important senses for teaching visually-impaired students in any context. Classroom lectures obviously emphasize the auditory aspects of learning, while touch is often relegated to either Braille texts or raised--line drawings for illustrative figures. From the student's perspective, some lecture topics, especially in the sciences, can be a challenge to grasp without additional stimuli. Geosciences have a distinct visual component that can be lost when teaching blind or visually-impaired students, particularly in the study of geomorphology and landform change. As an example, the matters raised concerning volcanic hazards can be difficult to envision without due attention to the limitations of visually-impaired students. Here, we suggest an example of a tactile approach for introducing the study of volcanoes and the hazards associated with them. Large, visually-stimulating images of a volcanic, populated region in southern Peru are supplied for those students who have poor but extant visual acuity, while precise, clay-based models of the region complement the images for those students, as well as for students who have no visual ability whatsoever. We use a model of the terrestrial volcano El Misti and the nearby city of Arequipa, Peru, to directly reflect the volcanic morphology and hazardous aspects of the terrain. The use of computer-generated digital elevation models from remote sensing imaging systems allows accurate replication of the regional topography. Instructors are able to modify these clay models to illustrate spatial and temporal changes in the region, allowing students to better grasp potential geological and geographical transformations over time. The models spawn engaging class discussions and help with designing hazard mitigation protocols.

  15. Navigation with a passive brain based interface

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erp, J.B.F. van; Werkhoven, P.J.; Thurlings, M.E.; Brouwer, A.-M.

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, we describe a Brain Computer Interface (BCI) for navigation. The system is based on detecting brain signals that are elicited by tactile stimulation on the torso indicating the desired direction.

  16. Preferential processing of tactile events under conditions of divided attention: Effects of divided attention on reaction time

    OpenAIRE

    Hanson, James V. M.; Whitaker, David; Heron, James

    2009-01-01

    Differences in transduction and transmission latencies of visual, auditory and tactile events cause corresponding differences in simple reaction time. As reaction time is usually measured in unimodal blocks, it is unclear whether such latency differences also apply when observers monitor multiple sensory channels. We investigate this by comparing reaction time when attention is focussed on a single modality, and when attention is divided between multiple modalities. Results show that tactile ...

  17. Brain Process for Perception of the “Out of the Body” Tactile Illusion for Virtual Object Interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hye Jin Lee

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available “Out of the body” tactile illusion refers to the phenomenon in which one can perceive tactility as if emanating from a location external to the body without any stimulator present there. Taking advantage of such a tactile illusion is one way to provide and realize richer interaction feedback without employing and placing actuators directly at all stimulation target points. However, to further explore its potential, it is important to better understand the underlying physiological and neural mechanism. As such, we measured the brain wave patterns during such tactile illusion and mapped out the corresponding brain activation areas. Participants were given stimulations at different levels with the intention to create veridical (i.e., non-illusory and phantom sensations at different locations along an external hand-held virtual ruler. The experimental data and analysis indicate that both veridical and illusory sensations involve, among others, the parietal lobe, one of the most important components in the tactile information pathway. In addition, we found that as for the illusory sensation, there is an additional processing resulting in the delay for the ERP (event-related potential and involvement by the limbic lobe. These point to regarding illusion as a memory and recognition task as a possible explanation. The present study demonstrated some basic understanding; how humans process “virtual” objects and the way associated tactile illusion is generated will be valuable for HCI (Human-Computer Interaction.

  18. Tactile stimulation interventions: influence of stimulation parameters on sensorimotor behavior and neurophysiological correlates in healthy and clinical samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parianen Lesemann, Franca H; Reuter, Eva-Maria; Godde, Ben

    2015-04-01

    The pure exposure to extensive tactile stimulation, without the requirement of attention or active training, has been revealed to enhance sensorimotor functioning presumably due to an induction of plasticity in the somatosensory cortex. The induced effects, including increased tactile acuity and manual dexterity have repeatedly been observed in basic as well as clinical research. However, results vary greatly in respect to the strength and direction of the effects on the behavioral and on the brain level. Multiple evidences show that differences in the stimulation protocols (e.g., two vs. multiple stimulation sites) and parameters (e.g., duration, frequency, and amplitude) might contribute to this variability of effects. Nevertheless, stimulation protocols have not been comprehensively compared yet. Identifying favorable parameters for tactile stimulation interventions is especially important because of its possible application as a treatment option for patients suffering from sensory loss, maladaptive plasticity, or certain forms of motor impairment. This review aims to compare the effects of different tactile stimulation protocols and to assess possible implications for tactile interventions. Our goal is to identify ways of optimizing stimulation protocols to improve sensorimotor performance. To this end, we reviewed research on tactile stimulation in the healthy population, with a focus on the effectiveness of the applied parameters regarding psychophysiological measures. We discuss the association of stimulation-induced changes on the behavioral level with alterations in neural representations and response characteristics. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. SOA thresholds for the perception of discrete/continuous tactile stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Eid, Mohamad; Korres, Georgios; Jensen, Camilla Birgitte Falk

    In this paper we present an experiment to measure the upper and lower thresholds of the Stimulus Onset Asynchrony (SOA) for continuous/discrete apparent haptic motion. We focus on three stimulation parameters: the burst duration, the SOA time, and the inter-actuator distance (between successive......-discrete boundary at lower SOA. Furthermore, the larger the inter-actuator distance, the more linear the relationship between the burst duration and the SOA timing. Finally, the large range between lower and upper thresholds for SOA can be utilized to create continuous movement stimulation on the skin at “varying...... speeds”. The results are discussed in reference to designing a tactile interface for providing continuous haptic motion with a desired speed of continuous tactile stimulation....

  20. Manipulation of Unknown Objects to Improve the Grasp Quality Using Tactile Information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montaño, Andrés; Suárez, Raúl

    2018-05-03

    This work presents a novel and simple approach in the area of manipulation of unknown objects considering both geometric and mechanical constraints of the robotic hand. Starting with an initial blind grasp, our method improves the grasp quality through manipulation considering the three common goals of the manipulation process: improving the hand configuration, the grasp quality and the object positioning, and, at the same time, prevents the object from falling. Tactile feedback is used to obtain local information of the contacts between the fingertips and the object, and no additional exteroceptive feedback sources are considered in the approach. The main novelty of this work lies in the fact that the grasp optimization is performed on-line as a reactive procedure using the tactile and kinematic information obtained during the manipulation. Experimental results are shown to illustrate the efficiency of the approach.

  1. Use of tactile feedback to control exploratory movements to characterize object compliance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Zhe; Fishel, Jeremy A; Yamamoto, Tomonori; Loeb, Gerald E

    2012-01-01

    Humans have been shown to be good at using active touch to perceive subtle differences in compliance. They tend to use highly stereotypical exploratory strategies, such as applying normal force to a surface. We developed similar exploratory and perceptual algorithms for a mechatronic robotic system (Barrett arm/hand system) equipped with liquid-filled, biomimetic tactile sensors (BioTac(®) from SynTouch LLC). The distribution of force on the fingertip was measured by the electrical resistance of the conductive liquid trapped between the elastomeric skin and a cluster of four electrodes on the flat fingertip surface of the rigid core of the BioTac. These signals provided closed-loop control of exploratory movements, while the distribution of skin deformations, measured by more lateral electrodes and by the hydraulic pressure, were used to estimate material properties of objects. With this control algorithm, the robot plus tactile sensor was able to discriminate the relative compliance of various rubber samples.

  2. Effect of mechanical tactile noise on amplitude of visual evoked potentials: multisensory stochastic resonance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Méndez-Balbuena, Ignacio; Huidobro, Nayeli; Silva, Mayte; Flores, Amira; Trenado, Carlos; Quintanar, Luis; Arias-Carrión, Oscar; Kristeva, Rumyana; Manjarrez, Elias

    2015-10-01

    The present investigation documents the electrophysiological occurrence of multisensory stochastic resonance in the human visual pathway elicited by tactile noise. We define multisensory stochastic resonance of brain evoked potentials as the phenomenon in which an intermediate level of input noise of one sensory modality enhances the brain evoked response of another sensory modality. Here we examined this phenomenon in visual evoked potentials (VEPs) modulated by the addition of tactile noise. Specifically, we examined whether a particular level of mechanical Gaussian noise applied to the index finger can improve the amplitude of the VEP. We compared the amplitude of the positive P100 VEP component between zero noise (ZN), optimal noise (ON), and high mechanical noise (HN). The data disclosed an inverted U-like graph for all the subjects, thus demonstrating the occurrence of a multisensory stochastic resonance in the P100 VEP. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  3. 3D printed stretchable capacitive sensors for highly sensitive tactile and electrochemical sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Kai; Wei, Hong; Liu, Wenguang; Meng, Hong; Zhang, Peixin; Yan, Chaoyi

    2018-05-01

    Developments of innovative strategies for the fabrication of stretchable sensors are of crucial importance for their applications in wearable electronic systems. In this work, we report the successful fabrication of stretchable capacitive sensors using a novel 3D printing method for highly sensitive tactile and electrochemical sensing applications. Unlike conventional lithographic or templated methods, the programmable 3D printing technique can fabricate complex device structures in a cost-effective and facile manner. We designed and fabricated stretchable capacitive sensors with interdigital and double-vortex designs and demonstrated their successful applications as tactile and electrochemical sensors. Especially, our stretchable sensors exhibited a detection limit as low as 1 × 10-6 M for NaCl aqueous solution, which could have significant potential applications when integrated in electronics skins.

  4. Similar effects of attention directed to acoustic and tactile stimuli on prepulse inhibition of acoustic startle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elden, Ake; Flaten, Magne A

    2003-09-01

    Prepulse inhibition (PPI) is assumed to index automatic and controlled processing. In three experiments (n= 32, 22, and 30) participants were asked to judge the duration of a prepulse in comparison with a stimulus presented 4000 ms before the prepulse. A distracter was presented simultaneously with the prepulse to increase the cognitive demands of the task. PPI was assessed at stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) of 30-150 ms, and 420 ms. The prepulse was either a tone (60 dB) or a tactile stimulus (21 kPa), and startle was elicited by 95 dB white noise. Directing attention to the prepulse increased PPI at SOAs of 60 ms and longer in all experiments, but the sensory modality to which attention was directed played only a minor role. We conclude that directing attention to both acoustic and tactile prepulses increased PPI.

  5. Slip detection with accelerometer and tactile sensors in a robotic hand model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Shanoon, Abdulrahman Abdulkareem S.; Anom Ahmad, Siti; Hassan, Mohd. Khair b.

    2015-11-01

    Grasp planning is an interesting issue in studies that dedicated efforts to investigate tactile sensors. This study investigated the physical force interaction between a tactile pressure sensor and a particular object. It also characterized object slipping during gripping operations and presented secure regripping of an object. Acceleration force was analyzed using an accelerometer sensor to establish a completely autonomous robotic hand model. An automatic feedback control system was applied to regrip the particular object when it commences to slip. Empirical findings were presented in consideration of the detection and subsequent control of the slippage situation. These findings revealed the correlation between the distance of the object slipping and the required force to regrip the object safely. This approach is similar to Hooke's law formula.

  6. All-Elastomer 3-Axis Contact Resistive Tactile Sensor Arrays and Micromilled Manufacturing Methods Thereof

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charalambides, Alexandros (Inventor); Bergbreiter, Sarah (Inventor); Penskiy, Ivan (Inventor)

    2018-01-01

    At least one tactile sensor includes an insulating layer and a conductive layer formed on the surface of the insulating layer. The conductive layer defines at least one group of flexible projections extending orthogonally from the surface of the insulating layer. The flexible projections include a major projection extending a distance orthogonally from the surface and at least one minor projection that is adjacent to and separate from the major projection wherein the major projection extends a distance orthogonally that is greater than the distance that the minor projection extends orthogonally. Upon a compressive force normal to, or a shear force parallel to, the surface, the major projection and the minor projection flex such that an electrical contact resistance is formed between the major projection and the minor projection. A capacitive tactile sensor is also disclosed that responds to the normal and shear forces.

  7. An Inkjet Printed Piezoresistive Back to Back Tactile Sensor for Endosurgical Palpation Applications (Postprint)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-02-23

    biological tissues. Chuang et al. [4] further employed the two- spring model to design a piezoelectric tactile sensor with a hard copper ball embedded in a...technique [12]. Because the printed graphene flakes must be sintered above 200 °C for good adhesion and better property on a silicon substrate with...electroplating a Cu mold, (c) stripping the photoresist followed by the removal of the seed layer using Cu etchant and BOE, (d) inkjet printing graphene flakes

  8. Sustained maintenance of somatotopic information in brain regions recruited by tactile working memory

    OpenAIRE

    Katus, Tobias; Muller, M.M.; Eimer, Martin

    2015-01-01

    To adaptively guide ongoing behavior, representations in working memory (WM) often have to be modified in line with changing task demands. We used event-related potentials (ERPs) to demonstrate that tactile WM representations are stored in modality-specific cortical regions, that the goal-directed modulation of these representations is mediated through hemispheric-specific activation of somatosensory areas, and that the rehearsal of somatotopic coordinates in memory is accomplished by modalit...

  9. Relative contributions of visual and auditory spatial representations to tactile localization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noel, Jean-Paul; Wallace, Mark

    2016-02-01

    Spatial localization of touch is critically dependent upon coordinate transformation between different reference frames, which must ultimately allow for alignment between somatotopic and external representations of space. Although prior work has shown an important role for cues such as body posture in influencing the spatial localization of touch, the relative contributions of the different sensory systems to this process are unknown. In the current study, we had participants perform a tactile temporal order judgment (TOJ) under different body postures and conditions of sensory deprivation. Specifically, participants performed non-speeded judgments about the order of two tactile stimuli presented in rapid succession on their ankles during conditions in which their legs were either uncrossed or crossed (and thus bringing somatotopic and external reference frames into conflict). These judgments were made in the absence of 1) visual, 2) auditory, or 3) combined audio-visual spatial information by blindfolding and/or placing participants in an anechoic chamber. As expected, results revealed that tactile temporal acuity was poorer under crossed than uncrossed leg postures. Intriguingly, results also revealed that auditory and audio-visual deprivation exacerbated the difference in tactile temporal acuity between uncrossed to crossed leg postures, an effect not seen for visual-only deprivation. Furthermore, the effects under combined audio-visual deprivation were greater than those seen for auditory deprivation. Collectively, these results indicate that mechanisms governing the alignment between somatotopic and external reference frames extend beyond those imposed by body posture to include spatial features conveyed by the auditory and visual modalities - with a heavier weighting of auditory than visual spatial information. Thus, sensory modalities conveying exteroceptive spatial information contribute to judgments regarding the localization of touch. Copyright © 2016

  10. Robotic and Virtual Reality BCIs Using Spatial Tactile and Auditory Oddball Paradigms

    OpenAIRE

    Rutkowski, Tomasz M.

    2016-01-01

    The paper reviews nine robotic and virtual reality (VR) brain–computer interface (BCI) projects developed by the author, in collaboration with his graduate students, within the BCI–lab research group during its association with University of Tsukuba, Japan. The nine novel approaches are discussed in applications to direct brain-robot and brain-virtual-reality-agent control interfaces using tactile and auditory BCI technologies. The BCI user intentions are decoded from the brainwaves in realti...

  11. Application of tactile/kinesthetic stimulation in preterm infants: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pepino, Vanessa C; Mezzacappa, Maria Aparecida

    2015-01-01

    To verify the methods used by the clinical trials that assessed the effect of tactile/kinesthetic stimulation on weight gain in preterm infants and highlight the similarities and differences among such studies. This review collected studies from two databases, PEDro and PubMed, in July of 2014, in addition to bibliographies. Two researchers assessed the relevant titles independently, and then chose which studies to read in full and include in this review by consensus. Clinical trials that studied tactile stimulation or massage therapy whether or not associated with kinesthetic stimulation of preterm infants; that assessed weight gain after the intervention; that had a control group and were composed in English, Portuguese, or Spanish were included. A total of 520 titles were found and 108 were selected for manuscript reading. Repeated studies were excluded, resulting in 40 different studies. Of these, 31 met all the inclusion criteria. There were many differences in the application of tactile/kinesthetic stimulation techniques among studies, which hindered the accurate reproduction of the procedure. Also, many studies did not describe the adverse events that occurred during stimulation, the course of action taken when such events occurred, and their effect on the outcome. These studies made a relevant contribution towards indicating tactile/kinesthetic stimulation as a promising tool. Nevertheless, there was no standard for application among them. Future studies should raise the level of methodological rigor and describe the adverse events. This may permit other researchers to be more aware of expected outcomes, and a standard technique could be established. Copyright © 2015 Sociedade Brasileira de Pediatria. Published by Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  12. Tactile motion adaptation reduces perceived speed but shows no evidence of direction sensitivity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah McIntyre

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: While the directionality of tactile motion processing has been studied extensively, tactile speed processing and its relationship to direction is little-researched and poorly understood. We investigated this relationship in humans using the 'tactile speed aftereffect' (tSAE, in which the speed of motion appears slower following prolonged exposure to a moving surface. METHOD: We used psychophysical methods to test whether the tSAE is direction sensitive. After adapting to a ridged moving surface with one hand, participants compared the speed of test stimuli on the adapted and unadapted hands. We varied the direction of the adapting stimulus relative to the test stimulus. RESULTS: Perceived speed of the surface moving at 81 mms(-1 was reduced by about 30% regardless of the direction of the adapting stimulus (when adapted in the same direction, Mean reduction = 23 mms(-1, SD = 11; with opposite direction, Mean reduction = 26 mms(-1, SD = 9. In addition to a large reduction in perceived speed due to adaptation, we also report that this effect is not direction sensitive. CONCLUSIONS: Tactile motion is susceptible to speed adaptation. This result complements previous reports of reliable direction aftereffects when using a dynamic test stimulus as together they describe how perception of a moving stimulus in touch depends on the immediate history of stimulation. Given that the tSAE is not direction sensitive, we argue that peripheral adaptation does not explain it, because primary afferents are direction sensitive with friction-creating stimuli like ours (thus motion in their preferred direction should result in greater adaptation, and if perceived speed were critically dependent on these afferents' response intensity, the tSAE should be direction sensitive. The adaptation that reduces perceived speed therefore seems to be of central origin.

  13. Asymmetric Functional Connectivity of the Contra- and Ipsilateral Secondary Somatosensory Cortex during Tactile Object Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yinghua Yu

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In the somatosensory system, it is well known that the bilateral secondary somatosensory cortex (SII receives projections from the unilateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI, and the SII, in turn, sends feedback projections to SI. Most neuroimaging studies have clearly shown bilateral SII activation using only unilateral stimulation for both anatomical and functional connectivity across SII subregions. However, no study has unveiled differences in the functional connectivity of the contra- and ipsilateral SII network that relates to frontoparietal areas during tactile object recognition. Therefore, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI and a delayed match-to-sample (DMS task to investigate the contributions of bilateral SII during tactile object recognition. In the fMRI experiment, 14 healthy subjects were presented with tactile angle stimuli on their right index finger and asked to encode three sample stimuli during the encoding phase and one test stimulus during the recognition phase. Then, the subjects indicated whether the angle of test stimulus was presented during the encoding phase. The results showed that contralateral (left SII activity was greater than ipsilateral (right SII activity during the encoding phase, but there was no difference during the recognition phase. A subsequent psycho-physiological interaction (PPI analysis revealed distinct connectivity from the contra- and ipsilateral SII to other regions. The left SII functionally connected to the left SI and right primary and premotor cortex, while the right SII functionally connected to the left posterior parietal cortex (PPC. Our findings suggest that in situations involving unilateral tactile object recognition, contra- and ipsilateral SII will induce an asymmetrical functional connectivity to other brain areas, which may occur by the hand contralateral effect of SII.

  14. An Evaluation of Signal Annoyance for a Head-Mounted Tactile Display

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-03-01

    communications. Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 50th Annual Meeting; 2006 Oct 16–20; San Francisco, CA. Thousand Oaks (CA): SAGE...Computer Society; 2005:471–472. Knapp TR. Treating ordinal scales as interval scales: an attempt to resolve the controversy. Nursing Research...Gonzalez C, Baldwin CL. Perceived urgency scaling in tactile alerts. Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 56th Annual Meeting

  15. Getting a Feel for Eclipses: A Tactile Discovery of an Awe-inspiring Celestial Event

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runyon, C. R.; Hall, C.; Hurd, D.; Minafra, J.; Williams, M. N.; Quinn, K.

    2017-12-01

    Solar eclipses provide a unique viewing opportunity for people across the world. August 21, 2017 was no exception. From Oregon to South Carolina, viewers were able to witness this remarkable phenomenon as the Moon comes between the Sun and Earth, casting a shadow on Earth. From a personal social / emotional standpoint seeing a total solar eclipse is indescribable and unforgettable. For the sighted, such an event is experienced through a combination of multiple senses, not just sight. For those people who are Blind / visually impaired (B/VI), the experience is different. While they may sense changes in the intensity of the sunlight, temperature, and animal noises, they are unable to "see" what is happening. How might this remarkable experience be brought to life for the B/VI? The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science (SSERVI CLASS) education/public engagement team developed a tactile book to do just this. The tactile book, Getting a Feel for Eclipses, provides users who are B/VI a means to see and experience the total solar eclipse through their fingertips. The unique, hand-made, tactile graphics are created from various textured materials such that each feature is readily identified. A QR code associated with the book provides access to digital content describing each tactile. Through this delivery mechanism, users who are B/VI, or even sighted may access the content with any smart device. Distributed to Schools for the Blind, national organizations for the Blind, Libraries, Museums and Science Centers across the country, the book helped bring a rare event to life for thousands of people who may not have otherwise been able to experience the eclipse. We look forward to 2024 when the U.S. will once again host the "path of totality." Until then, Getting a Feel for Eclipses will continue to serve as a guide to those interested, and an updated eclipse path map will continue to make the book pertinent.

  16. Robust tactile sensory responses in finger area of primate motor cortex relevant to prosthetic control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Karen E.; Irwin, Zachary T.; Bullard, Autumn J.; Thompson, David E.; Bentley, J. Nicole; Stacey, William C.; Patil, Parag G.; Chestek, Cynthia A.

    2017-08-01

    Objective. Challenges in improving the performance of dexterous upper-limb brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) have prompted renewed interest in quantifying the amount and type of sensory information naturally encoded in the primary motor cortex (M1). Previous single unit studies in monkeys showed M1 is responsive to tactile stimulation, as well as passive and active movement of the limbs. However, recent work in this area has focused primarily on proprioception. Here we examined instead how tactile somatosensation of the hand and fingers is represented in M1. Approach. We recorded multi- and single units and thresholded neural activity from macaque M1 while gently brushing individual finger pads at 2 Hz. We also recorded broadband neural activity from electrocorticogram (ECoG) grids placed on human motor cortex, while applying the same tactile stimulus. Main results. Units displaying significant differences in firing rates between individual fingers (p  sensory information was present in M1 to correctly decode stimulus position from multiunit activity above chance levels in all monkeys, and also from ECoG gamma power in two human subjects. Significance. These results provide some explanation for difficulties experienced by motor decoders in clinical trials of cortically controlled prosthetic hands, as well as the general problem of disentangling motor and sensory signals in primate motor cortex during dextrous tasks. Additionally, examination of unit tuning during tactile and proprioceptive inputs indicates cells are often tuned differently in different contexts, reinforcing the need for continued refinement of BMI training and decoding approaches to closed-loop BMI systems for dexterous grasping.

  17. The magnetic touch illusion: A perceptual correlate of visuo-tactile integration in peripersonal space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guterstam, Arvid; Zeberg, Hugo; Özçiftci, Vedat Menderes; Ehrsson, H Henrik

    2016-10-01

    To accurately localize our limbs and guide movements toward external objects, the brain must represent the body and its surrounding (peripersonal) visual space. Specific multisensory neurons encode peripersonal space in the monkey brain, and neurobehavioral studies have suggested the existence of a similar representation in humans. However, because peripersonal space lacks a distinct perceptual correlate, its involvement in spatial and bodily perception remains unclear. Here, we show that applying brushstrokes in mid-air at some distance above a rubber hand-without touching it-in synchrony with brushstrokes applied to a participant's hidden real hand results in the illusory sensation of a "magnetic force" between the brush and the rubber hand, which strongly correlates with the perception of the rubber hand as one's own. In eight experiments, we characterized this "magnetic touch illusion" by using quantitative subjective reports, motion tracking, and behavioral data consisting of pointing errors toward the rubber hand in an intermanual pointing task. We found that the illusion depends on visuo-tactile synchrony and exhibits similarities with the visuo-tactile receptive field properties of peripersonal space neurons, featuring a non-linear decay at 40cm that is independent of gaze direction and follows changes in the rubber hand position. Moreover, the "magnetic force" does not penetrate physical barriers, thus further linking this phenomenon to body-specific visuo-tactile integration processes. These findings provide strong support for the notion that multisensory integration within peripersonal space underlies bodily self-attribution. Furthermore, we propose that the magnetic touch illusion constitutes a perceptual correlate of visuo-tactile integration in peripersonal space. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Functional consequences of experience-dependent plasticity on tactile perception following perceptual learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trzcinski, Natalie K; Gomez-Ramirez, Manuel; Hsiao, Steven S

    2016-09-01

    Continuous training enhances perceptual discrimination and promotes neural changes in areas encoding the experienced stimuli. This type of experience-dependent plasticity has been demonstrated in several sensory and motor systems. Particularly, non-human primates trained to detect consecutive tactile bar indentations across multiple digits showed expanded excitatory receptive fields (RFs) in somatosensory cortex. However, the perceptual implications of these anatomical changes remain undetermined. Here, we trained human participants for 9 days on a tactile task that promoted expansion of multi-digit RFs. Participants were required to detect consecutive indentations of bar stimuli spanning multiple digits. Throughout the training regime we tracked participants' discrimination thresholds on spatial (grating orientation) and temporal tasks on the trained and untrained hands in separate sessions. We hypothesized that training on the multi-digit task would decrease perceptual thresholds on tasks that require stimulus processing across multiple digits, while also increasing thresholds on tasks requiring discrimination on single digits. We observed an increase in orientation thresholds on a single digit. Importantly, this effect was selective for the stimulus orientation and hand used during multi-digit training. We also found that temporal acuity between digits improved across trained digits, suggesting that discriminating the temporal order of multi-digit stimuli can transfer to temporal discrimination of other tactile stimuli. These results suggest that experience-dependent plasticity following perceptual learning improves and interferes with tactile abilities in manners predictive of the task and stimulus features used during training. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Purposeful Goal-Directed Movements Give Rise to Higher Tactile Discrimination Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Georgiana Juravle

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Tactile perception is inhibited during goal-directed reaching movements (sensory suppression. Here, participants performed simple reaching or exploratory movements (where contact with the table surface was maintained. We measured tactile discrimination thresholds for vibratory stimuli delivered to participants' wrists while executing the movement, and while at rest. Moreover, we measured discrimination performance (in a same vs. different task for the materials covering the table surface, during the execution of the different movements. The threshold and discrimination tasks could be performed either singly or together, both under active movement and passive conditions (ie, no movement required, but with tactile stimulation. Thresholds measured at rest were significantly lower than thresholds measured during both active movements and passive touches. This provides a clear indication of sensory suppression during movement execution. Moreover, the discrimination data revealed main effects of task (single vs. dual, movement execution type (passive vs. active, and movement type (reach vs. exploration: Discrimination performance was significantly higher under conditions of single-tasking, active movements, as well as exploratory movements. Therefore, active movement of the hand with the purpose of gaining tactual information about the surface of the table gives rise to enhanced performance, thus suggesting that we feel more when we need to; It would appear that tactual information is prioritized when relevant for the movement being executed.

  20. Real-Time Knee Adduction Moment Feedback for Gait Retraining Through Visual and Tactile Displays

    KAUST Repository

    Wheeler, Jason W.; Shull, Pete B.; Besier, Thor F.

    2011-01-01

    The external knee adduction moment (KAM) measured during gait is an indicator of tibiofemoral joint osteoarthritis progression and various strategies have been proposed to lower it. Gait retraining has been shown to be an effective, noninvasive approach for lowering the KAM. We present a new gait retraining approach in which the KAM is fed back to subjects in real-time during ambulation. A study was conducted in which 16 healthy subjects learned to alter gait patterns to lower the KAM through visual or tactile (vibration) feedback. Participants converged on a comfortable gait in just a few minutes by using the feedback to iterate on various kinematic modifications. All subjects adopted altered gait patterns with lower KAM compared with normal ambulation (average reduction of 20.7%). Tactile and visual feedbacks were equally effective for real-time training, although subjects using tactile feedback took longer to converge on an acceptable gait. This study shows that real-time feedback of the KAM can greatly increase the effectiveness and efficiency of subject-specific gait retraining compared with conventional methods. © 2011 American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

  1. Helping students revise disruptive experientially supported ideas about thermodynamics: Computer visualizations and tactile models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Douglas; Jorde, Doris

    2004-01-01

    This study analyzes the impact of an integrated sensory model within a thermal equilibrium visualization. We hypothesized that this intervention would not only help students revise their disruptive experientially supported ideas about why objects feel hot or cold, but also increase their understanding of thermal equilibrium. The analysis synthesizes test data and interviews to measure the impact of this strategy. Results show that students in the experimental tactile group significantly outperform their control group counterparts on posttests and delayed posttests, not only on tactile explanations, but also on thermal equilibrium explanations. Interview transcripts of experimental and control group students corroborate these findings. Discussion addresses improving the tactile model as well as application of the strategy to other science topics. The discussion also considers possible incorporation of actual kinetic or thermal haptic feedback to reinforce the current audio and visual feedback of the visualization. This research builds on the conceptual change literature about the nature and role of students' experientially supported ideas as well as our understanding of curriculum and visualization design to support students in learning about thermodynamics, a science topic on which students perform poorly as shown by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) studies.

  2. Tactile event-related potentials in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS): Implications for brain-computer interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silvoni, S; Konicar, L; Prats-Sedano, M A; Garcia-Cossio, E; Genna, C; Volpato, C; Cavinato, M; Paggiaro, A; Veser, S; De Massari, D; Birbaumer, N

    2016-01-01

    We investigated neurophysiological brain responses elicited by a tactile event-related potential paradigm in a sample of ALS patients. Underlying cognitive processes and neurophysiological signatures for brain-computer interface (BCI) are addressed. We stimulated the palm of the hand in a group of fourteen ALS patients and a control group of ten healthy participants and recorded electroencephalographic signals in eyes-closed condition. Target and non-target brain responses were analyzed and classified offline. Classification errors served as the basis for neurophysiological brain response sub-grouping. A combined behavioral and quantitative neurophysiological analysis of sub-grouped data showed neither significant between-group differences, nor significant correlations between classification performance and the ALS patients' clinical state. Taking sequential effects of stimuli presentation into account, analyses revealed mean classification errors of 19.4% and 24.3% in healthy participants and ALS patients respectively. Neurophysiological correlates of tactile stimuli presentation are not altered by ALS. Tactile event-related potentials can be used to monitor attention level and task performance in ALS and may constitute a viable basis for future BCIs. Implications for brain-computer interface implementation of the proposed method for patients in critical conditions, such as the late stage of ALS and the (completely) locked-in state, are discussed. Copyright © 2015 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Long-range tactile masking occurs in the postural body schema.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Amour, Sarah; Harris, Laurence R

    2016-02-01

    Long-range tactile masking has been reported between mirror symmetric body locations. This suggests a general principle of contralateral inhibition between corresponding points on each side of the body that may serve to enhance distinguishing touches on the two halves of the body. Do such effects occur before or after posture is added to the body schema? Here, we address this question by exploring the effect of arm position on long-range tactile masking. The influence of arm position was investigated using different positions of both the test and masking arms. Tactile sensitivity was measured on one forearm, while vibrotactile-masking stimulation was applied to the opposite arm or to a control site on the shoulder. No difference was found in sensitivity when test arm position was varied. Physical contact between the arms significantly increased the effectiveness of a masking stimulus applied to the other arm. Long-range masking between the arms was strongest when the arms were held parallel to each other and was abolished if the position of either the test arm or the masking arm was moved from this position. Modulation of the effectiveness of masking by the position of both the test and masking arms suggests that these effects occur after posture information is added to the body's representation in the brain.

  4. Sanshool on The Fingertip Interferes with Vibration Detection in a Rapidly-Adapting (RA Tactile Channel.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scinob Kuroki

    Full Text Available An Asian spice, Szechuan pepper (sanshool, is well known for the tingling sensation it induces on the mouth and on the lips. Electrophysiological studies have revealed that its active ingredient can induce firing of mechanoreceptor fibres that typically respond to mechanical vibration. Moreover, a human behavioral study has reported that the perceived frequency of sanshool-induced tingling matches with the preferred frequency range of the tactile rapidly adapting (RA channel, suggesting the contribution of sanshool-induced RA channel firing to its unique perceptual experience. However, since the RA channel may not be the only channel activated by sanshool, there could be a possibility that the sanshool tingling percept may be caused in whole or in part by other sensory channels. Here, by using a perceptual interference paradigm, we show that the sanshool-induced RA input indeed contributes to the human tactile processing. The absolute detection thresholds for vibrotactile input were measured with and without sanshool application on the fingertip. Sanshool significantly impaired detection of vibrations at 30 Hz (RA channel dominant frequency, but did not impair detection of higher frequency vibrations at 240 Hz (Pacinian-corpuscle (PC channel dominant frequency or lower frequency vibrations at 1 Hz (slowly adapting 1 (SA1 channel dominant frequency. These results show that the sanshool induces a peripheral RA channel activation that is relevant for tactile perception. This anomalous activation of RA channels may contribute to the unique tingling experience of sanshool.

  5. Role of combined tactile and kinesthetic feedback in minimally invasive surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Soo-Chul; Lee, Hyung-Kew; Park, Joonah

    2014-10-18

    Haptic feedback is of critical importance in surgical tasks. However, conventional surgical robots do not provide haptic feedback to surgeons during surgery. Thus, in this study, a combined tactile and kinesthetic feedback system was developed to provide haptic feedback to surgeons during robotic surgery. To assess haptic feasibility, the effects of two types of haptic feedback were examined empirically - kinesthetic and tactile feedback - to measure object-pulling force with a telesurgery robotics system at two desired pulling forces (1 N and 2 N). Participants answered a set of questionnaires after experiments. The experimental results reveal reductions in force error (39.1% and 40.9%) when using haptic feedback during 1 N and 2 N pulling tasks. Moreover, survey analyses show the effectiveness of the haptic feedback during teleoperation. The combined tactile and kinesthetic feedback of the master device in robotic surgery improves the surgeon's ability to control the interaction force applied to the tissue. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  6. Audio-Tactile Integration in Congenitally and Late Deaf Cochlear Implant Users

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nava, Elena; Bottari, Davide; Villwock, Agnes; Fengler, Ineke; Büchner, Andreas; Lenarz, Thomas; Röder, Brigitte

    2014-01-01

    Several studies conducted in mammals and humans have shown that multisensory processing may be impaired following congenital sensory loss and in particular if no experience is achieved within specific early developmental time windows known as sensitive periods. In this study we investigated whether basic multisensory abilities are impaired in hearing-restored individuals with deafness acquired at different stages of development. To this aim, we tested congenitally and late deaf cochlear implant (CI) recipients, age-matched with two groups of hearing controls, on an audio-tactile redundancy paradigm, in which reaction times to unimodal and crossmodal redundant signals were measured. Our results showed that both congenitally and late deaf CI recipients were able to integrate audio-tactile stimuli, suggesting that congenital and acquired deafness does not prevent the development and recovery of basic multisensory processing. However, we found that congenitally deaf CI recipients had a lower multisensory gain compared to their matched controls, which may be explained by their faster responses to tactile stimuli. We discuss this finding in the context of reorganisation of the sensory systems following sensory loss and the possibility that these changes cannot be “rewired” through auditory reafferentation. PMID:24918766

  7. Audio-tactile integration in congenitally and late deaf cochlear implant users.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Nava

    Full Text Available Several studies conducted in mammals and humans have shown that multisensory processing may be impaired following congenital sensory loss and in particular if no experience is achieved within specific early developmental time windows known as sensitive periods. In this study we investigated whether basic multisensory abilities are impaired in hearing-restored individuals with deafness acquired at different stages of development. To this aim, we tested congenitally and late deaf cochlear implant (CI recipients, age-matched with two groups of hearing controls, on an audio-tactile redundancy paradigm, in which reaction times to unimodal and crossmodal redundant signals were measured. Our results showed that both congenitally and late deaf CI recipients were able to integrate audio-tactile stimuli, suggesting that congenital and acquired deafness does not prevent the development and recovery of basic multisensory processing. However, we found that congenitally deaf CI recipients had a lower multisensory gain compared to their matched controls, which may be explained by their faster responses to tactile stimuli. We discuss this finding in the context of reorganisation of the sensory systems following sensory loss and the possibility that these changes cannot be "rewired" through auditory reafferentation.

  8. No Correlation between Distorted Body Representations Underlying Tactile Distance Perception and Position Sense

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew R. Longo

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Both tactile distance perception and position sense are believed to require that immediate afferent signals be referenced to a stored representation of body size and shape (the body model. For both of these abilities, recent studies have reported that the stored body representations involved are highly distorted, at least in the case of the hand, with the hand dorsum represented as wider and squatter than it actually is. Here, we investigated whether individual differences in the magnitude of these distortions are shared between tactile distance perception and position sense, as would be predicted by the hypothesis that a single distorted body model underlies both tasks. We used established task to measure distortions of the represented shape of the hand dorsum. Consistent with previous results, in both cases there were clear biases to overestimate distances oriented along the medio-lateral axis of the hand compared to the proximo-distal axis. Moreover, within each task there were clear split-half correlations, demonstrating that both tasks show consistent individual differences. Critically, however, there was no correlation between the magnitudes of distortion in the two tasks. This casts doubt on the proposal that a common body model underlies both tactile distance perception and position sense.

  9. Application of vibration to wrist and hand skin affects fingertip tactile sensation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakshminarayanan, Kishor; Lauer, Abigail W; Ramakrishnan, Viswanathan; Webster, John G; Seo, Na Jin

    2015-01-01

    A recent study showed that fingertip pads’ tactile sensation can improve by applying imperceptible white-noise vibration to the skin at the wrist or dorsum of the hand in stroke patients. This study further examined this behavior by investigating the effect of both imperceptible and perceptible white-noise vibration applied to different locations within the distal upper extremity on the fingertip pads’ tactile sensation in healthy adults. In 12 healthy adults, white-noise vibration was applied to one of four locations (dorsum hand by the second knuckle, thenar and hypothenar areas, and volar wrist) at one of four intensities (zero, 60%, 80%, and 120% of the sensory threshold for each vibration location), while the fingertip sensation, the smallest vibratory signal that could be perceived on the thumb and index fingertip pads, was assessed. Vibration intensities significantly affected the fingertip sensation (P sensation (P sensation (P sensation (P > 0.01), all compared with the zero vibration condition. This effect with vibration intensity conforms to the stochastic resonance behavior. Nonspecificity to the vibration location suggests the white-noise vibration affects higher level neuronal processing for fingertip sensing. Further studies are needed to elucidate the neural pathways for distal upper extremity vibration to impact fingertip pad tactile sensation. PMID:26177959

  10. Hearing visuo-tactile synchrony - Sound-induced proprioceptive drift in the invisible hand illusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darnai, Gergely; Szolcsányi, Tibor; Hegedüs, Gábor; Kincses, Péter; Kállai, János; Kovács, Márton; Simon, Eszter; Nagy, Zsófia; Janszky, József

    2017-02-01

    The rubber hand illusion (RHI) and its variant the invisible hand illusion (IHI) are useful for investigating multisensory aspects of bodily self-consciousness. Here, we explored whether auditory conditioning during an RHI could enhance the trisensory visuo-tactile-proprioceptive interaction underlying the IHI. Our paradigm comprised of an IHI session that was followed by an RHI session and another IHI session. The IHI sessions had two parts presented in counterbalanced order. One part was conducted in silence, whereas the other part was conducted on the backdrop of metronome beats that occurred in synchrony with the brush movements used for the induction of the illusion. In a first experiment, the RHI session also involved metronome beats and was aimed at creating an associative memory between the brush stroking of a rubber hand and the sounds. An analysis of IHI sessions showed that the participants' perceived hand position drifted more towards the body-midline in the metronome relative to the silent condition without any sound-related session differences. Thus, the sounds, but not the auditory RHI conditioning, influenced the IHI. In a second experiment, the RHI session was conducted without metronome beats. This confirmed the conditioning-independent presence of sound-induced proprioceptive drift in the IHI. Together, these findings show that the influence of visuo-tactile integration on proprioceptive updating is modifiable by irrelevant auditory cues merely through the temporal correspondence between the visuo-tactile and auditory events. © 2016 The British Psychological Society.

  11. Maternal perception of fever in children by tactile technique how valid it is

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jalil, J.; Bashir, F.

    2014-01-01

    To determine the validity of tactile technique as a tool for fever assessment in children by mothers. Study Design: A cohort study. Place and Duration of Study: The study was conducted at the department of Paediatrics, Combined Military Hospital, Bahawalpur, Pakistan, from September 2007 to September 2009. Patients and Methods: Convenient sampling technique was employed. Three hundred and ninety three children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years, brought to hospital by mothers with history of prolonged fever (7 days or more) perceived by tactile technique. Children were not supposed to be necessarily febrile at the time of enrollment. A six hourly temperature recording was done. Moreover, whenever mothers felt that their child is febrile by using tactile method of their choice, axillary thermometry was done irrespective of the number of recordings. Standard mercury thermometry by axillary technique (without adding a degree to measured value) was chosen. Reading of more than 99.50 Fahrenheit (37.50 centigrade) was labeled as fever. Cases that remained fever free for five days were labeled afebrile and discharged. Mothers were advised to watch for fever for one week at home and to report back immediately if they felt that their child has fever, confirmed by a single tactile measurement. Those who reported back were readmitted and subjected to the same method of monitoring and recording as was applied on first admission. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 17. Descriptive statistics were applied to calculate the frequencies, means and standard deviations. Results: Among the 392 children 58.4% were males and 41.4% were females. The mean age was 24.4 +-14.39 months. Majority had a history of fever of 5 to 24 days (70.2%). In only 184 (46.93%) patients fever was confirmed. In 208 (53.08%) patients no fever was recorded and were discharged. Twenty one patients reported back with fever. However, fever was confirmed in only 11 patients. In summary, a total of 195 (49

  12. Greater tactile sensitivity and less use of immature psychological defense mechanisms predict women's penile-vaginal intercourse orgasm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brody, Stuart; Houde, Stephanie; Hess, Ursula

    2010-09-01

    Previous research has suggested that diminished tactile sensitivity might be associated with reduced sexual activity and function. Research has also demonstrated significant physiological and psychological differences between sexual behaviors, including immature psychological defense mechanisms (associated with various psychopathologies) impairing specifically women's orgasm from penile-vaginal intercourse (PVI). To examine the extent to which orgasm triggered by PVI (distinguished from other sexual activities) is associated with both greater tactile sensitivity and lesser use of immature psychological defenses. Seventy French-Canadian female university students (aged 18-30) had their finger sensitivity measured with von Frey type microfilaments, completed the Defense Style Questionnaire and a short form of the Marlowe-Crowne social desirability scale, and provided details of the 1 month (and ever) frequencies of engaging in, and having an orgasm from, PVI, masturbation, anal intercourse, partner masturbation, and cunnilingus. Logistic and linear regression prediction of orgasm triggered by PVI from tactile sensitivity, age, social desirability responding, and immature psychological defenses. Having a PVI orgasm in the past month was associated with greater tactile sensitivity (odds ratio=4.0 for each filament point) and less use of immature defense mechanisms (odds ratio=5.1 for each scale point). Lifetime PVI orgasm was associated only with less use of immature defense mechanisms (and lower social desirability responding score). Orgasms triggered by other activities were not associated with either tactile sensitivity or immature defense mechanisms. Tactile sensitivity was also associated with greater past month PVI frequency (inclusion of PVI frequency in a logistic regression model displaced tactile sensitivity), and lesser use of immature defenses was associated with greater past month PVI and PVI orgasm frequencies. Both diminished physical sensitivity and the

  13. Attending to and remembering tactile stimuli: a review of brain imaging data and single-neuron responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, H; Sinclair, R J

    2000-11-01

    Clinical and neuroimaging observations of the cortical network implicated in tactile attention have identified foci in parietal somatosensory, posterior parietal, and superior frontal locations. Tasks involving intentional hand-arm movements activate similar or nearby parietal and frontal foci. Visual spatial attention tasks and deliberate visuomotor behavior also activate overlapping posterior parietal and frontal foci. Studies in the visual and somatosensory systems thus support a proposal that attention to the spatial location of an object engages cortical regions responsible for the same coordinate referents used for guiding purposeful motor behavior. Tactile attention also biases processing in the somatosensory cortex through amplification of responses to relevant features of selected stimuli. Psychophysical studies demonstrate retention gradients for tactile stimuli like those reported for visual and auditory stimuli, and suggest analogous neural mechanisms for working memory across modalities. Neuroimaging studies in humans using memory tasks, and anatomic studies in monkeys support the idea that tactile information relayed from the somatosensory cortex is directed ventrally through the insula to the frontal cortex for short-term retention and to structures of the medial temporal lobe for long-term encoding. At the level of single neurons, tactile (such as visual and auditory) short-term memory appears as a persistent response during delay intervals between sampled stimuli.

  14. Tactile Sliding Behavior of R2R Mass-Produced PLLA Nanosheet towards Biomedical Device in Skin Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheng Zhang

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available In this research, sliding friction was measured between the fingertip and nanosheet on a silicon substrate under two conditions: dry and wet. By using a force transducer, the tactile friction force and applied load were measured. According to the experimental results, the relationship of friction force and applied load exhibits a positive correlation under both dry and wet conditions. In addition, the nanosheets are able to reduce the friction force and coefficient of friction (COF compared to the reference sample, especially under the wet condition. Under the assumption of a full contact condition, the estimated contact area increases with larger applied loads. Furthermore, based on the wear observation, the skin sliding performance caused slight abrasions to the surface of the nanosheet samples with a mild wear track along the sliding direction. Overall, the sliding behavior between the skin and nanosheet was investigated in terms of friction force, COF, applied load, contact area, and wear. These findings can contribute to the nanosheet-related research towards biomedical devices in skin applications.

  15. Asymmetrical learning between a tactile and visual serial RT task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abrahamse, E.L.; van der Lubbe, Robert Henricus Johannes; Verwey, Willem B.

    2007-01-01

    According to many researchers, implicit learning in the serial reaction-time task is predominantly motor based and therefore should be independent of stimulus modality. Previous research on the task, however, has focused almost completely on the visual domain. Here we investigated sequence learning

  16. Tactile Gap Detection Deteriorates during Bimanual Symmetrical Movements under Mirror Visual Feedback.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet H Bultitude

    Full Text Available It has been suggested that incongruence between signals for motor intention and sensory input can cause pain and other sensory abnormalities. This claim is supported by reports that moving in an environment of induced sensorimotor conflict leads to elevated pain and sensory symptoms in those with certain painful conditions. Similar procedures can lead to reports of anomalous sensations in healthy volunteers too. In the present study, we used mirror visual feedback to investigate the effects of sensorimotor incongruence on responses to stimuli that arise from sources external to the body, in particular, touch. Incongruence between the sensory and motor signals for the right arm was manipulated by having the participants make symmetrical or asymmetrical movements while watching a reflection of their left arm in a parasagittal mirror, or the left hand surface of a similarly positioned opaque board. In contrast to our prediction, sensitivity to the presence of gaps in tactile stimulation of the right forearm was not reduced when participants made asymmetrical movements during mirror visual feedback, as compared to when they made symmetrical or asymmetrical movements with no visual feedback. Instead, sensitivity was reduced when participants made symmetrical movements during mirror visual feedback relative to the other three conditions. We suggest that small discrepancies between sensory and motor information, as they occur during mirror visual feedback with symmetrical movements, can impair tactile processing. In contrast, asymmetrical movements with mirror visual feedback may not impact tactile processing because the larger discrepancies between sensory and motor information may prevent the integration of these sources of information. These results contrast with previous reports of anomalous sensations during exposure to both low and high sensorimotor conflict, but are nevertheless in agreement with a forward model interpretation of perceptual

  17. Neural networks engaged in tactile object manipulation: patterns of expression among healthy individuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seitz Rüdiger J

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Somatosensory object discrimination has been shown to involve widespread cortical and subcortical structures in both cerebral hemispheres. In this study we aimed to identify the networks involved in tactile object manipulation by principal component analysis (PCA of individual subjects. We expected to find more than one network. Methods Seven healthy right-handed male volunteers (aged 22 to 44 yrs manipulated with their right hand aluminium spheres during 5 s with a repetition frequency of 0.5-0.7 Hz. The correlation coefficients between the principal component temporal expression coefficients and the hemodynamic response modelled by SPM (ecc determined the task-related components. To establish reproducibility within subjects and similarity of functional connectivity patterns among subjects, regional correlation coefficients (rcc were computed between task-related component image volumes. By hierarchically categorizing, selecting and averaging the task-related component image volumes across subjects according to the rccs, mean component images (MCIs were derived describing neural networks associated with tactile object manipulation. Results Two independent mean component images emerged. Each included the primary sensorimotor cortex contralateral to the manipulating hand. The region extended to the premotor cortex in MCI 1, whereas it was restricted to the hand area of the primary sensorimotor cortex in MCI 2. MCI 1 showed bilateral involvement of the paralimbic anterior cingulate cortex (ACC, whereas MCI 2 implicated the midline thalamic nuclei and two areas of the rostral dorsal pons. Conclusions Two distinct networks participate in tactile object manipulation as revealed by the intra- and interindividual comparison of individual scans. Both were employed by most subjects, suggesting that both are involved in normal somatosensory object discrimination.

  18. Nogo receptor 1 limits tactile task performance independent of basal anatomical plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer I Park

    Full Text Available The genes that govern how experience refines neural circuitry and alters synaptic structural plasticity are poorly understood. The nogo-66 receptor 1 gene (ngr1 is one candidate that may restrict the rate of learning as well as basal anatomical plasticity in adult cerebral cortex. To investigate if ngr1 limits the rate of learning we tested adult ngr1 null mice on a tactile learning task. Ngr1 mutants display greater overall performance despite a normal rate of improvement on the gap-cross assay, a whisker-dependent learning paradigm. To determine if ngr1 restricts basal anatomical plasticity in the associated sensory cortex, we repeatedly imaged dendritic spines and axonal varicosities of both constitutive and conditional adult ngr1 mutant mice in somatosensory barrel cortex for two weeks through cranial windows with two-photon chronic in vivo imaging. Neither constant nor acute deletion of ngr1 affected turnover or stability of dendritic spines or axonal boutons. The improved performance on the gap-cross task is not attributable to greater motor coordination, as ngr1 mutant mice possess a mild deficit in overall performance and a normal learning rate on the rotarod, a motor task. Mice lacking ngr1 also exhibit normal induction of tone-associated fear conditioning yet accelerated fear extinction and impaired consolidation. Thus, ngr1 alters tactile and motor task performance but does not appear to limit the rate of tactile or motor learning, nor determine the low set point for synaptic turnover in sensory cortex.

  19. Does the sight of physical threat induce a tactile processing bias? Modality-specific attentional facilitation induced by viewing threatening pictures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Damme, Stefaan; Gallace, Alberto; Spence, Charles; Crombez, Geert; Moseley, G Lorimer

    2009-02-09

    Threatening stimuli are thought to bias spatial attention toward the location from which the threat is presented. Although this effect is well-established in the visual domain, little is known regarding whether tactile attention is similarly affected by threatening pictures. We hypothesised that tactile attention might be more affected by cues implying physical threat to a person's bodily tissues than by cues implying general threat. In the present study, participants made temporal order judgments (TOJs) concerning which of a pair of tactile (or auditory) stimuli, one presented to either hand, at a range of inter-stimulus intervals, had been presented first. A picture (showing physical threat, general threat, or no threat) was presented in front of one or the other hand shortly before the tactile stimuli. The results revealed that tactile attention was biased toward the side on which the picture was presented, and that this effect was significantly larger for physical threat pictures than for general threat or neutral pictures. By contrast, the bias in auditory attention toward the side of the picture was significantly larger for general threat pictures than for physical threat pictures or neutral pictures. These findings therefore demonstrate a modality-specific effect of physically threatening cues on the processing of tactile stimuli, and of generally threatening cues on auditory information processing. These results demonstrate that the processing of tactile information from the body part closest to the threatening stimulus is prioritized over tactile information from elsewhere on the body.

  20. When Seeing Doesn't Matter: Assessing the After-Effects of Tactile Distractor Processing in the Blind and the Sighted

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frings, Christian; Amendt, Anna; Spence, Charles

    2011-01-01

    Negative priming (NP) refers to the finding that people's responses to probe targets previously presented as prime distractors are usually slower than to unrepeated stimuli. Intriguingly, the effect sizes of tactile NP were much larger than the effect sizes for visual NP. We analyzed whether the large tactile NP effect is just a side effect of the…

  1. The effect of dual-hemisphere transcranial direct current stimulation over the parietal operculum on tactile orientation discrimination

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fujimoto, Shuhei; Tanaka, Satoshi; Laakso, Ilkka

    2017-01-01

    The parietal operculum (PO) often shows ipsilateral activation during tactile object perception in neuroimaging experiments. However, the relative contribution of the PO to tactile judgment remains unclear. Here, we examined the effect of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) over...... bilateral PO to test the relative contributions of the ipsilateral PO to tactile object processing. Ten healthy adults participated in this study, which had a double-blind, sham-controlled, cross-over design. Participants discriminated grating orientation during three tDCS and sham conditions. In the dual......-hemisphere tDCS conditions, anodal and cathodal electrodes were placed over the left and right PO. In the uni-hemisphere tDCS condition, anodal and cathodal electrodes were applied over the left PO and contralateral orbit, respectively. In the tDCS and sham conditions, we applied 2 mA for 15 min and for 15 s...

  2. Tactile perception in blind Braille readers: a psychophysical study of acuity and hyperacuity using gratings and dot patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, A C; Thiagarajah, M C; Sathian, K

    2000-02-01

    It is not clear whether the blind are generally superior to the sighted on measures of tactile sensitivity or whether they excel only on certain tests owing to the specifics of their tactile experience. We compared the discrimination performance of blind Braille readers and age-matched sighted subjects on three tactile tasks using precisely specified stimuli. Initially, the blind significantly outperformed the sighted at a hyperacuity task using Braille-like dot patterns, although, with practice, both groups performed equally well. On two other tasks, hyperacute discrimination of gratings that differed in ridge width and spatial-acuity-dependent discrimination of grating orientation, the performance of the blind did not differ significantly from that of sighted subjects. These results probably reflect the specificity of perceptual learning due to Braille-reading experience.

  3. Attenuation of self-generated tactile sensations is predictive, not postdictive.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul M Bays

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available When one finger touches the other, the resulting tactile sensation is perceived as weaker than the same stimulus externally imposed. This attenuation of sensation could result from a predictive process that subtracts the expected sensory consequences of the action, or from a postdictive process that alters the perception of sensations that are judged after the event to be self-generated. In this study we observe attenuation even when the fingers unexpectedly fail to make contact, supporting a predictive process. This predictive attenuation of self-generated sensation may have evolved to enhance the perception of sensations with an external cause.

  4. Tactile stimulation of dairy heifers: effects on behavior and milk production after calving

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. R. M. Néri

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The positive management of primiparous heifers before calving through tactile stimulation may have beneficial effects on behavior during routine milking. The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of tactile stimulation in dairy heifers and its effects on behavior and milk production after calving. Ten primiparous Holstein heifers were used. Half the group received training with tactile stimulation of all body regions, while the other group did not receive stimulation (control group. The training period was divided into three phases: early, days 1 to 6 of training; intermediate: days 7 to 12, and final, days 13 to 23. During training, movement and displacement scores were obtained over a period of 5 minutes. Physiological parameters were also recorded [respiratory rate (FR and minimum eye temperature (ETmin measured with a thermal imaging camera]. After calving, the heifers were submitted to first milking when the evaluations were started for the first 10 days of milking (20 consecutive milkings. The behavior of the animals was evaluated by attributing a reactivity score of 1 (desirable behaviors or 2 (undesirable behaviors: entry into the pen, teat disinfection, milking one or two jets of milk for mastitis testing, attachment of teat cups, and removal of milk, as well as the amount of milk produced. Mean ETmin and FR decreased over the training period. A significant difference was observed for displacement score (P=0.019, with a reduction in displacement from the early to the final period (from 60.0% to 25.7%. During the attachment of teat cups, stimulated heifers were less reactive (P=0.002, characterized by a lower frequency of undesirable behaviors (12.0%, than unstimulated heifers (30.2%. The average milk yield during the first 60 days of lactation was higher for the group of stimulated heifers (Ln y=2.20–0.0102t+0.331lnt, R2=0.76 compared to unstimulated heifers (Ln y=1.54–0.0191x+0.578lnx, R2=0.79, with this difference being

  5. Attenuation of Self-Generated Tactile Sensations is Predictive, not Postdictive.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available When one finger touches the other, the resulting tactile sensation is perceived as weaker than the same stimulus externally imposed. This attenuation of sensation could result from a predictive process that subtracts the expected sensory consequences of the action, or from a postdictive process that alters the perception of sensations that are judged after the event to be self-generated. In this study we observe attenuation even when the fingers unexpectedly fail to make contact, supporting a predictive process. This predictive attenuation of self-generated sensation may have evolved to enhance the perception of sensations with an external cause.

  6. Tactile sensitivity of blind and visually impaired children and adolescents. The significance of swimming exercises

    OpenAIRE

    Rostkowska, Elżbieta; Maśnik, Elżbieta

    2001-01-01

    The im of the study is to compare the tactile sensitivity threshold (TST) of the blind children who practice swimming and those who do not practice any sports with the TST of healthy people of similar age. TST was measured on the pad of he index finger of the dominant hand using an aesthesiometer. Lower TST was found in blind girls compared to healthy girls as well as lower TST in blind girls who practice swimming compared to the blind girls who do not practice ane sports. A significant lower...

  7. Coding of information about tactile stimuli by neurones of the cuneate nucleus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, P R; Ferrington, D G; Rowe, M

    1978-12-01

    1. The responses of cuneate neurones to controlled tactile stimulation of the foot pads were examined in unanaesthetized, decerebrate cats. The neurones were divided into three functional classes; one sensitive to steady tactile stimuli, and two dynamically sensitive classes which could be readily differentiated by their responsiveness to cutaneous vibration. Each class appeared to receive an exclusive input from only one of the three known groups of tactile receptors associated with the foot pads, namely the Pacinian corpuscles, the Merkel endings and the intradermal, encapsulated endings known as Krause or Meissner corpuscles. 2. Cuneate neurones responsive to steady indentation of the skin displayed approximately linear or sigmoidal stimulus-response relations over indentation ranges up to approximately 1.5--2 mm. Response variability at a fixed stimulus intensity was relatively low and showed little systematic change over the full range of the stimulus-response curves. 3. One class of dynamically sensitive cuneate neurones responded to cutaneous vibration over a range of approximately 5-80 Hz with maximal responsiveness around 30 Hz. The other class, the Pacinian neurones, responded over a range of approximately 80- greater than 600 Hz with maximal responsiveness at 200-400 Hz. The thresholds and combined band width of vibratory sensitivity of these populations were comparable with known subjective thresholds and range of cutaneous vibratory sensibility. 4. Responses of cuneate neurones were phase-locked to the vibratory stimulus suggesting that information about vibration frequency could be coded by the patterns of impulse activity. Quantitative measures indicated that maximal phase-locking occurred in responses to vibration frequencies of 10-50 Hz with a progressive decline at higher frequencies. Above 400 Hz, impulse activity occurred almost randomly throughout the vibratory stimulus cycle and therefore carried little further signal of vibratory frequency

  8. Mechanics of localized slippage in tactile sensing and application to soft sensing systems

    CERN Document Server

    Ho, Anh-Van

    2014-01-01

    Localized slippage occurs during any relative sliding of soft contacts, ranging from human fingertips to robotic fingertips. Although this phenomenon is dominant for a very short time prior to gross slippage, localized slippage is a crucial factor for any to-be-developed soft sensing system to respond to slippage before it occurs. The content of this book addresses all aspects of localized slippage, including modeling and simulating it, as well as applying it to the construction of novel sensors with slip tactile perception.

  9. Using mixed reality, force feedback and tactile augmentation to improve the realism of medical simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, J Brian; Porter, Susan M

    2002-01-01

    This paper describes an application of a display approach which uses chromakey techniques to composite real and computer-generated images allowing a user to see his hands and medical instruments collocated with the display of virtual objects during a medical training simulation. Haptic feedback is provided through the use of a PHANTOM force feedback device in addition to tactile augmentation, which allows the user to touch virtual objects by introducing corresponding real objects in the workspace. A simplified catheter introducer insertion simulation was developed to demonstrate the capabilities of this approach.

  10. Measurement of micro moulded parts by Computed Tomography and comparison to optical and tactile techniques

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yagüe, J.A.; Tosello, Guido; Carmignato, S

    2011-01-01

    This paper focuses on dimensional verification of two micro-injection moulded components, selected from actual industrial productions, using CT metrological tools. In addition to CT scanning, also a tactile Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM) with sub-micrometer uncertainty and an Optical Coordinate...... Measuring Machine (OCMM) allowing fast measurements suitable for in-line quality control were employed as validation instruments. The experimental work carried out and the analysis of the results provide valuable conclusions about the advantages and drawbacks of using CT metrology in comparison with CMM...... and OCMM when these techniques are employed for quality control of micro moulded parts....

  11. Tactile Gloves for Autonomous Grasping With the NASA/DARPA Robonaut

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, T. B.; Ambrose, R. O.; Diftler, M. A.; Platt, R., Jr.; Butzer, M. J.

    2004-01-01

    Tactile data from rugged gloves are providing the foundation for developing autonomous grasping skills for the NASA/DARPA Robonaut, a dexterous humanoid robot. These custom gloves compliment the human like dexterity available in the Robonaut hands. Multiple versions of the gloves are discussed, showing a progression in using advanced materials and construction techniques to enhance sensitivity and overall sensor coverage. The force data provided by the gloves can be used to improve dexterous, tool and power grasping primitives. Experiments with the latest gloves focus on the use of tools, specifically a power drill used to approximate an astronaut's torque tool.

  12. Electro-tactile stimulation of the posterior neck induces body anteropulsion during upright stance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Nunzio, A M; Yavuz, U S; Martinez-Valdes, E; Farina, D; Falla, D

    2018-05-01

    Sensory information conveyed along afferent fibers from muscle and joint proprioceptors play an important role in the control of posture and gait in humans. In particular, proprioceptive information from the neck is fundamental in supplying the central nervous system with information about the orientation and movement of the head relative to the rest of the body. The previous studies have confirmed that proprioceptive afferences originating from the neck region, evoked via muscle vibration, lead to strong body-orienting effects during static conditions (e.g., leaning of the body forwards or backwards, depending on location of vibration). However, it is not yet certain in humans, whether the somatosensory receptors located in the deep skin (cutaneous mechanoreceptors) have a substantive contribution to postural control, as vibratory stimulation encompasses the receptive field of all the somatosensory receptors from the skin to the muscles. The aim of this study was to investigate the postural effect of cutaneous mechanoreceptor afferences using electro-tactile stimulation applied to the neck. Ten healthy volunteers (8M, 2F) were evaluated. The average position of their centre of foot pressure (CoP) was acquired before, during, and after a subtle electro-tactile stimulation over their posterior neck (mean ± SD = 5.1 ± 2.3 mA at 100 Hz-140% of the perception threshold) during upright stance with their eyes closed. The electro-tactile stimulation led to a body-orienting effect with the subjects consistently leaning forward. An average shift of the CoP of 12.1 ± 11.9 mm (mean ± SD) was reported, which significantly (p < 0.05) differed from its average position under a control condition (no stimulation). These results indicate that cutaneous mechanoreceptive inflow from the neck is integrated to control stance. The findings are relevant for the exploitation of electro-tactile stimulation for rehabilitation interventions where induced

  13. Differential effects of painful and non-painful stimulation on tactile processing in fibromyalgia syndrome and subjects with masochistic behaviour.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bettina Pollok

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In healthy subjects repeated tactile stimulation in a conditioning test stimulation paradigm yields attenuation of primary (S1 and secondary (S2 somatosensory cortical activation, whereas a preceding painful stimulus results in facilitation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Since previous data suggest that cognitive processes might affect somatosensory processing in S1, the present study aims at investigating to what extent cortical reactivity is altered by the subjective estimation of pain. To this end, the effect of painful and tactile stimulation on processing of subsequently applied tactile stimuli was investigated in patients with fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS and in subjects with masochistic behaviour (MB by means of a 122-channel whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG system. Ten patients fulfilling the criteria for the diagnosis of FMS, 10 subjects with MB and 20 control subjects matched with respect to age, gender and handedness participated in the present study. Tactile or brief painful cutaneous laser stimuli were applied as conditioning stimulus (CS followed by a tactile test stimulus (TS 500 ms later. While in FMS patients significant attenuation following conditioning tactile stimulation was evident, no facilitation following painful stimulation was found. By contrast, in subjects with MB no attenuation but significant facilitation occurred. Attenuation as well as facilitation applied to cortical responses occurring at about 70 ms but not to early S1 or S2 responses. Additionally, in FMS patients the amount of attenuation was inversely correlated with catastrophizing tendency. CONCLUSION: The present results imply altered cortical reactivity of the primary somatosensory cortex in FMS patients and MB possibly reflecting differences of individual pain experience.

  14. Behavioral impact of unisensory and multisensory audio-tactile events: pros and cons for interlimb coordination in juggling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory Zelic

    Full Text Available Recent behavioral neuroscience research revealed that elementary reactive behavior can be improved in the case of cross-modal sensory interactions thanks to underlying multisensory integration mechanisms. Can this benefit be generalized to an ongoing coordination of movements under severe physical constraints? We choose a juggling task to examine this question. A central issue well-known in juggling lies in establishing and maintaining a specific temporal coordination among balls, hands, eyes and posture. Here, we tested whether providing additional timing information about the balls and hands motions by using external sound and tactile periodic stimulations, the later presented at the wrists, improved the behavior of jugglers. One specific combination of auditory and tactile metronome led to a decrease of the spatiotemporal variability of the juggler's performance: a simple sound associated to left and right tactile cues presented antiphase to each other, which corresponded to the temporal pattern of hands movement in the juggling task. A contrario, no improvements were obtained in the case of other auditory and tactile combinations. We even found a degraded performance when tactile events were presented alone. The nervous system thus appears able to integrate in efficient way environmental information brought by different sensory modalities, but only if the information specified matches specific features of the coordination pattern. We discuss the possible implications of these results for the understanding of the neuronal integration process implied in audio-tactile interaction in the context of complex voluntary movement, and considering the well-known gating effect of movement on vibrotactile perception.

  15. Behavioral Impact of Unisensory and Multisensory Audio-Tactile Events: Pros and Cons for Interlimb Coordination in Juggling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelic, Gregory; Mottet, Denis; Lagarde, Julien

    2012-01-01

    Recent behavioral neuroscience research revealed that elementary reactive behavior can be improved in the case of cross-modal sensory interactions thanks to underlying multisensory integration mechanisms. Can this benefit be generalized to an ongoing coordination of movements under severe physical constraints? We choose a juggling task to examine this question. A central issue well-known in juggling lies in establishing and maintaining a specific temporal coordination among balls, hands, eyes and posture. Here, we tested whether providing additional timing information about the balls and hands motions by using external sound and tactile periodic stimulations, the later presented at the wrists, improved the behavior of jugglers. One specific combination of auditory and tactile metronome led to a decrease of the spatiotemporal variability of the juggler's performance: a simple sound associated to left and right tactile cues presented antiphase to each other, which corresponded to the temporal pattern of hands movement in the juggling task. A contrario, no improvements were obtained in the case of other auditory and tactile combinations. We even found a degraded performance when tactile events were presented alone. The nervous system thus appears able to integrate in efficient way environmental information brought by different sensory modalities, but only if the information specified matches specific features of the coordination pattern. We discuss the possible implications of these results for the understanding of the neuronal integration process implied in audio-tactile interaction in the context of complex voluntary movement, and considering the well-known gating effect of movement on vibrotactile perception. PMID:22384211

  16. Numbness in clinical and experimental pain--a cross-sectional study exploring the mechanisms of reduced tactile function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geber, Christian; Magerl, Walter; Fondel, Ricarda; Fechir, Marcel; Rolke, Roman; Vogt, Thomas; Treede, Rolf-Detlef; Birklein, Frank

    2008-09-30

    Pain patients often report distinct numbness of the painful skin although no structural peripheral or central nerve lesion is obvious. In this cross-sectional study we assessed the reduction of tactile function and studied underlying mechanisms in patients with chronic pain and in healthy participants exposed to phasic and tonic experimental nociceptive stimulation. Mechanical detection (MDT) and pain thresholds (MPT) were assessed in the painful area and the non-painful contralateral side in 10 patients with unilateral musculoskeletal pain. Additionally, 10 healthy participants were exposed to nociceptive stimulation applied to the volar forearms (capsaicin; electrical stimulation, twice each). Areas of tactile hypaesthesia and mechanical hyperalgesia were assessed. MDT and MPT were quantified adjacent to the stimulation site. Tactile hypaesthesia in pain patients and in experimental pain (MDT-z-scores: -0.66+/-0.30 and -0.42+/-0.15, respectively, both p<0.01) was paralleled by mechanical hyperalgesia (MPT-z-scores: +0.51+/-0.27, p<0.05; and +0.48+/-0.10, p<0.001). However, hypaesthesia and hyperalgesia were not correlated. Although 9 patients reported numbness, only 3 of them were able to delineate circumscript areas of tactile hypaesthesia. In experimental pain, the area of tactile hypaesthesia could be mapped in 31/40 experiments (78%). Irrespective of the mode of nociceptive stimulation (phasic vs. tonic) tactile hypaesthesia and hyperalgesia developed with a similar time course and disappeared within approximately 1 day. Hypaesthesia (numbness) often encountered in clinical pain can be reproduced by experimental nociceptive stimulation. The time course of effects suggests a mechanism involving central plasticity.

  17. Tactile massage and hypnosis as a health promotion for nurses in emergency care-a qualitative study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nordby-Hörnell Elisabeth

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background This study explores nursing personnel's experiences and perceptions of receiving tactile massage and hypnosis during a personnel health promotion project. Nursing in a short term emergency ward environment can be emotionally and physically exhausting due to the stressful work environment and the high dependency patient care. A health promotion project integrating tactile massage and hypnosis with conventional physical activities was therefore introduced for nursing personnel working in this setting at a large university hospital in Sweden. Methods Four semi-structured focus group discussions were conducted with volunteer nursing personnel participants after the health promotion project had been completed. There were 16 participants in the focus groups and there were 57 in the health promotion intervention. The discussions were transcribed verbatim and analysed with qualitative content analysis. Results The findings indicated that tactile massage and hypnosis may contribute to reduced levels of stress and pain and increase work ability for some nursing personnel. The sense of well-being obtained in relation to health promotion intervention with tactile massage and hypnosis seemed to have positive implications for both work and leisure. Self-awareness, contentment and self-control may be contributing factors related to engaging in tactile massage and hypnosis that might help nursing personnel understand their patients and colleagues and helped them deal with difficult situations that occurred during their working hours. Conclusion The findings indicate that the integration of tactile massage and hypnosis in personnel health promotion may be valuable stress management options in addition to conventional physical activities.

  18. Use of tactile materials for Astronomy teaching for visually- and hearing- impaired public schools in Minas Gerais

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paganotti, A.; Reis, C.; Voelzke, M. R.

    2017-12-01

    This work deals with the use of tactile materials as a pedagogical tool for the teaching of Astronomy, and this material was used in a didactic activity with 44 students of the public elementary school in Minas Gerais. A visually impaired student and another hearing impaired participated, being these the focus of the research. With the tactile visual material elaborated, the objective was to develop themes such as phases of the Moon, eclipses and Solar System. Two questionnaires were applied and revealed an improvement in the concepts related to Astronomy and in the socialization of disabled students with the group after the didactic activity.

  19. Sensing and tactile artificial muscles from reactive materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conzuelo, Laura Valero; Arias-Pardilla, Joaquín; Cauich-Rodríguez, Juan V; Smit, Mascha Afra; Otero, Toribio Fernández

    2010-01-01

    Films of conducting polymers can be oxidized and reduced in a reversible way. Any intermediate oxidation state determines an electrochemical equilibrium. Chemical or physical variables acting on the film may modify the equilibrium potential, so that the film acts as a sensor of the variable. The working potential of polypyrrole/DBSA (Dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid) films, oxidized or reduced under constant currents, changes as a function of the working conditions: electrolyte concentration, temperature or mechanical stress. During oxidation, the reactive material is a sensor of the ambient, the consumed electrical energy being the sensing magnitude. Devices based on any of the electrochemical properties of conducting polymers must act simultaneously as sensors of the working conditions. Artificial muscles, as electrochemical actuators constituted by reactive materials, respond to the ambient conditions during actuation. In this way, they can be used as actuators, sensing the surrounding conditions during actuation. Actuating and sensing signals are simultaneously included by the same two connecting wires.

  20. Supramodal Theta, Gamma, and Sustained Fields Predict Modality-specific Modulations of Alpha and Beta Oscillations during Visual and Tactile Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ede, Freek; Jensen, Ole; Maris, Eric

    2017-08-01

    Flexible control over currently relevant sensory representations is an essential feature of primate cognition. We investigated the neurophysiological bases of such flexible control in humans during an intermodal working memory task in which participants retained visual or tactile sequences. Using magnetoencephalography, we first show that working memory retention engages early visual and somatosensory areas, as reflected in the sustained load-dependent suppression of alpha and beta oscillations. Next, we identify three components that are also load dependent but modality independent: medial prefrontal theta synchronization, frontoparietal gamma synchronization, and sustained parietal event-related fields. Critically, these domain-general components predict (across trials and within load conditions) the modality-specific suppression of alpha and beta oscillations, with largely unique contributions per component. Thus, working memory engages multiple complementary frontoparietal components that have discernible neuronal dynamics and that flexibly modulate retention-related activity in sensory areas in a manner that tracks the current contents of working memory.