To provide a realistic haptic sensation, cutaneous, thermal, and kinaesthetic sensation should be simultaneously conveyed to a user. While many research efforts have been conducted to develop separate haptic modules, it is quite challenging to construct an integrated haptic device which is sufficiently small to be incorporated into a computer mouse interface. In an effort to achieve this goal, this study proposes the new design of a compact combined haptic device with cutaneous, thermal, and kinaesthetic modules. To convey realistic tactile sensations despite the limited size of the interface, the cutaneous module includes a 3 × 3 miniature pin-array display and an amplitude-modulated (AM) vibration generator. The pin-array display is intended to mimic both small-scale shapes and rough surfaces. The AM vibration generator creates a variety of amplitude-modulated vibrations to replicate the continuous texture of a virtual object. To further convey the temperature and thermophysical properties of an object, the thermal module including a peltier element and a cooling jacket is integrated to the cutaneous module. Since the kinaesthetic information is equally important while perceiving objects, two kinaesthetic actuators operated by MR fluids are located on the control circuit board while supporting the cutaneous and thermal modules. The integrated haptic device can be used to enhance the sense of reality with combined haptic feedbacks while users interact with virtual graphic environments.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.