Materials simulation in virtual prototyping is one of the most challenging issues as not completely fulfilled by current devices. It allows Virtual Reality-based interfaces to provide multisensory interaction and to enhance product experience by mainly stimulating user emotional response. In this context the paper presents a new tactile simulation approach based on material surface properties elaboration and processing to stimulate roughness and texture coarseness perception. The developed approach leads to the development of a tactile display and a software tool to manage the configuration of selective stimulating signals. The main problem the research aims at overcoming, regards with the nature of signals adopted by most electrotactile displays and the way to stimulate skin mechanoreceptors. The paper focuses on the description of the adopted approach and of the implemented software tool in order to control the tactile display.

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