ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201711.0050.v1
Online: 8 November 2017 (03:24:52 CET)
Vibrotactile displays have been reported effective in enhancing awareness of flight attitude for pilots and releasing other heavily loaded sensory channels. Although some work have been done on vibrotactile coding of flight altitude, there is lack of a systematic investigation into coding methods with combination of multiple coding parameters. In this paper, seven coding methods with combinations of multiple coding parameters (location, rhythm, intensity, and mode) were systematically studied to cue flight attitude for pilots with a vibrotactile vest. We conducted two psychophysical experiments in a static tactile sensory environment in which the attitude commands in the form of vibrotactile feedback are presented randomly, and quantitatively evaluated the effectiveness of the vest according to the users’ recognition accuracy, reaction time and information transfer rate. The results show that vibrotactile vest is effective to cue attitude information. The preferred coding method with combinations of location, rhythm and mode allowed users to perform with lowest reaction time and highest recognition accuracy and yield about 255 bits/min of information transfer rate. Overall, the presented work provides valuable insights and guidance for the design of haptic displays for vibrotactile aids for the pilots.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201812.0324.v1
Subject: Engineering, Control & Systems Engineering Keywords: telepresence; neuromorphic vibrotactile feedback; human-robot interaction; hand tracking; gesture-based teleoperation
Online: 28 December 2018 (03:53:18 CET)
Research on bidirectional human-machine interfaces will enable the smooth interaction with robotic platforms in contexts ranging from industry to tele-medicine and rescue. This paper introduces a bidirectional communication system to achieve multisensory telepresence during the gestural control of an industrial robotic arm. We complement the gesture-based control by means of a tactile-feedback strategy grounding on a spiking artificial neuron model. Force and motion from the robot are converted in neuromorphic haptic stimuli delivered on the user’s hand through a vibro-tactile glove. Untrained personnel participated in an experimental task benchmarking a pick-and-place operation. The robot end-effector was used to sequentially press six buttons, illuminated according to a random sequence, and comparing the tasks executed without and with tactile feedback. The results demonstrated the reliability of the hand tracking strategy developed for controlling the robotic arm, and the effectiveness of a neuronal spiking model for encoding hand displacement and exerted forces in order to promote a fluid embodiment of the haptic interface and control strategy. The main contribution of this paper is in presenting a robotic arm under gesture-based remote control with multisensory telepresence, demonstrating for the first time that a spiking haptic interface can be used to effectively deliver on the skin surface a sequence of stimuli emulating the neural code of the mechanoreceptors beneath.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0516.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Behavioral Neuroscience Keywords: imperceptible; stimulation; vibrotactile; Gaussian noise; stochastic resonance; somatosensory system; sub-sensory threshold
Online: 21 November 2018 (06:39:21 CET)
Imperceptible vibratory noise stimulation has shown to be an effective means of improving stability for both whole body postural control and simple motor control tasks. While the physiological mechanism affording this improvement is uncertain, it is suspected that sensory noise stimulation may elicit a stochastic resonance-like effect within the somatosensory system. A stochastic resonance effect describes the phenomenon in which noise added to a non-linear system improves signal detection rather than degrading it. One hallmark of stochastic resonance is the existence of an optimal noise level which elicits the best system performance. There is disagreement in the literature regarding the presence of an optimal stimulation level for motor stability in humans. The goals of this study were to: 1) determine optimal stimulation level as a function of an individual’s sub-sensory threshold level, and 2) to determine whether performance of a force stability task was significantly better when subjects received stimulation at this identified optimal level compared to other sub-sensory threshold stimulation levels. Eighteen (18) participants completed an isometric finger flexion task with visual feedback while receiving noise stimulation scaled to varying percentages of their individual sub-sensory threshold level. Performance for this force stabilization task was quantified as the root-mean-square (RMS) error between the target force and the actual generated force values. Despite controlling all other signal properties and varying only amplitude, optimal noise stimulation values still varied widely across participants (10-100% sub-sensory threshold level). Statistical modeling revealed a significant improvement in task performance with optimal noise stimulation compared to other sub-sensory stimulation levels (p ≤ 0.019) with estimated marginal mean differences in force errors ranging from 0.13 to 0.23 N. Moderate significant Spearman correlations (rs = 0.49 and rs = 0.56, respectively) were found between finger flexion maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) and sub-sensory threshold level and MVC and optimal stimulation level. A strong, significant Spearman correlation (rs = 0.65) was observed between sub-sensory threshold level and optimal stimulation level. Although these correlations do not provide a means to predict optimal stimulation level as a function of these other measures, optimal stimulation level appears to increase with sub-sensory threshold and MVC.