Researchers at Tencent’s Robotics X Laboratory and City University of Hong Kong (CityU) have come up with what they describe as a wearable tactile rendering system that can make the user feel touch sensations with high spatial resolution and a rapid response rate, the website Hackster.io reported. Those behind it claim the technology can provide the right kind of touch sensation that would make for the perfect shopping and gaming experience in the metaverse. Besides this, such a system also has immense potential in a braille display to make it easy for those with visual impairment to continue with their reading.
The system comprises an electro-tactile actuator that is thin and flexible enough for the user to wear it into their finger cot itself. It can make the user experience various sensations, which can be vibrations, pressure, texture, and roughness. Researchers said the electro-tactile actuator requires less than 30V for its operation, which is attributed to the high-frequency alternating simulation strategy the researchers adopted for the wearable device. This makes it safe to wear and operate while being comfortable enough as well.
“Our new system can elicit tactile stimuli with both high spatial resolution (76 dots/cm2), similar to the density of related receptors in the human skin, and a rapid response rate (4 kHz),” said Mr. Lin Weikang, a PhD student at CityU, who developed and tested the device.
As already stated, the system has immense potential in the augmented reality and virtual reality segments. For instance, the wearer can feel the fabric of the clothes that a seller has on display in the metaverse, or the sensation one gets when being licked by a cat will also get replicated in much the same manner. The wearer will also be able to pet the cat, which will make them feel the cat’s fur, and so on.
“We expect our technology to benefit a broad spectrum of applications, such as information transmission, surgical training, teleoperation, and multimedia entertainment,” added Dr. Yang Zhengbao, Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering of CityU, who co-led the study.
With a keen interest in tech, I make it a point to keep myself updated on the latest developments in the world of technology and gadgets. That includes smartphones or tablet devices but stretches to even AI and self-driven automobiles as well, the latter being my latest fad. Besides writing, I like watching videos, reading, listening to music, or experimenting with different recipes. Motion picture is another aspect that interests me a lot and maybe I’ll make a film sometime in the future.