Imagine being able to build and use a robotic device without the need for expensive, specialist kit or skills. That is the vision that researchers from the University of Bristol have turned into reality, creating a lightweight, affordable and simple solution for everyday users.
While multiple robotic arm devices already exist, most are heavy, expensive and outside the reach of individuals who lack the expertise to use them.
Mantis, designed by experts in human-computer interaction from Bristol’s world-renowned team of engineers, is the first system of its kind that enables light, affordable and accessible haptic force feedback.
Human beings have five senses, but electronic devices communicate with us using predominantly just two: sight and hearing. Haptic feedback (often shortened to just haptics) changes this by simulating the sense of touch. Not only can you touch a computer or other device, but the computer can touch you back. A force feedback is a particular kind that can provide force.
Theoretically, the Mantis could be built and used by anyone upwards from a secondary school student. Not only that, researcher say the Mantis can be built for 20 times less the expense of the market equivalent because it uses components, including brushless motors, that cost significantly less than high-fidelity equivalents that are often confined to research labs.
“Humans already have a great sense of touch. Mantis expands on this innate ability by enabling people to touch and feel 3D objects, adding more depth to the VR experience,” says lead researcher Dr Anne Roudaut, from Bristol’s Department of Computer Science.
“Imagine a user playing a game in Virtual Reality with Mantis attached to their fingers. They could then touch and feel virtual objects, thus immersing themselves both visually and physically in an alternative dimension.”
Dr Roudaut and her PhD student Gareth Barnaby, are in New Orleans (19-23 October) presenting the Mantis at the User Interface Software and Technology (UIST) conference, the premier forum for innovations in human-computer interfaces that brings together people from graphical and web user interfaces, tangible and ubiquitous computing, and virtual and augmented reality.
Project Mantis is also supported by a new a spin-out venture, Senmag Robotics, which researchers hope will enable them to progress their design to market, starting with the production and testing of the first kits ready for release by the end of the year.
“We will be giving out the plans to allow anyone to build a Mantis,” adds Gareth Barnaby. “Because we are keen to make force feedback devices more widespread and not confined to research labs, we are also looking to produce some easy to build kits as well as pre-built versions that we will make available on the website.”
Learn more: New haptic arm places robotics within easy reach
The Latest on: Haptic force feedback
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The Latest on: Haptic force feedback
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[Ben Krasnow] is working on a force-feedback joystick. It centers around the concept of an air muscle which transfers pressure into linear motion. He cites another air muscle project as part of ...
- Latest Apple laptop newson October 2, 2020 at 2:21 am
Here's everything you need to know about screenshotting on a Mac. What is Force Touch? Apple's haptic feedback technology explained By Maggie Tillman · 15 September 2020 This is everything you ...
- Forget haptic gloves, HaptX is making a full-body haptic suiton October 1, 2020 at 6:10 pm
and HaptX recently received a $1.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation's National Robotics Initiative to fund the development of a full-body haptic feedback suit for use in VR and ...
- How to disable 3D and Haptic Touch in iOS 13on September 30, 2020 at 6:58 pm
Haptic Touch, on the other hand, does not distinguish between the force or intensity of pressure ... As on the iPhone XR, the haptic feedback consists of a subtle vibration in response to the long ...
- Arc set to return after founder revives high-end e-bike brandon September 30, 2020 at 5:00 pm
Not only that, but Arc had planned for the Vector to be one of the most technologically advanced motorcycles available, with haptic feedback offering ... are applied the force acts to lift the ...
- How to disable 3D and Haptic Touch in iOS 13on September 30, 2020 at 11:32 am
Haptic Touch, on the other hand, does not distinguish between the force or intensity of pressure ... As on the iPhone XR, the haptic feedback consists of a subtle vibration in response to the ...
- watchOS 7 Removes Force Touch Support From Your Apple Watch, Here's Everything That's Changedon September 30, 2020 at 5:25 am
Force Touch was one of those Apple Watch features ... That's a shame, because just like 3D Touch on iPhone, Apple implemented the haptic feedback technology across the entire watchOS ...
- Apple’s Removal Of Force Touch In WatchOS 7 Makes Apple Watch A Less Accessible Deviceon September 29, 2020 at 1:15 pm
Force Touch critics have applauded its removal ... Apple would be wise to adapt Haptic Touch to the Watch. The benefits of haptic feedback on accessibility are significant, and it should return ...
- HaptX wins $1.5 million NSF grant to create full-body haptics for VRon September 29, 2020 at 6:49 am
The NSF grant will fund the ForceBot project for four years, resulting in what the researchers believe will be the world’s first full-body haptic and force feedback system for virtual environments.
- HaptX to Develop Full-Body Force Feedback Haptics After Winning $1.5m Granton September 29, 2020 at 3:53 am
Known for its industrial, microfluidic haptic gloves, HaptX has announced that in conjunction with Virginia Tech and the University of Florida, their research teams are developing full-body haptics.
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