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HAPTEX

Project ID: 006549
Finanziato nell'ambito di

HAPtic sensing of virtual TEXtiles

Dal 2004-12-01 al 2007-11-30, progetto concluso | HAPTEX Sito web

Dettagli del progetto

Costo totale:

EUR 1 663 980

Contributo UE:

EUR 1 663 980

Coordinato in:

Switzerland

Invito a presentare proposte:

FP6-2002-IST-CSee other projects for this call

Meccanismo di finanziamento:

STREP - Specific Targeted Research Project

Description

Virtual fabric for new online shopping experience

Buying clothes on the internet can save time and money, but you can never be entirely sure of what the fabric feels like until the garment arrives at your home. An ambitious European research project will give shoppers a virtual touch before they buy.

Researchers working in the HAPTEX project have pioneered the development of 'virtual fabric' that allows people to manipulate and feel the physical properties of a textile through a computer interface and a glove embedded with sensors and actuators.

Used commercially, the technology would not only revolutionise the way people buy products online – be it clothes or furniture – but it could also help to make games and virtual reality applications far more realistic.

The system relies on a variety of advanced technologies, not least the evolving field of haptics, taken from the Greek word haptikos, which means 'able to touch'.

Recreating textures

To recreate virtually how a fabric feels, the researchers first feed detailed measurements of its texture, strain, stress and deformation properties into a computer. A virtual piece of the fabric can then be visualised on the screen.

Users can then manipulate it by putting on an exoskeleton glove with a powered mechanical control system on the back and an array of moving pins under each finger.

Guided by the haptic information about the fabric’s properties, the control system exerts a force on the wearer’s fingers to simulate manipulating the fabric. Users can stretch it, crumple it and pull it at will, and see their actions reproduced by a virtual hand on the computer screen.

At the same time, the pins move up and down under each finger to convey a tactile sense of the material’s texture.

Fusion of haptic and tactile technologies

The researchers say the project is the first attempt anywhere in the world to use haptic and tactile interfaces in a single device. In addition, most previous haptic interfaces relied on moving a stylus over the surface – an approach that, by comparison, limits the realism.

A prototype developed during the course of the HAPTEX project used 1cm² arrays of 24 pins each that are able to move 40 times a second. These stimulate the touch receptors in the wearer’s fingertips. The receptors are spaced between 0.5mm to 1mm apart.

Impressively realistic

The researchers say the system recreates the feel of a fabric with an impressive degree of realism to the point where it is possible to differentiate textiles by their texture alone. Adding more pins to the fingertip arrays and getting them to move faster would further improve the experience.

Though the device developed in the HAPTEX project is still a long way from being ready for commercial use, the researchers’ work has nonetheless opened the door to a future in which online shopping and gaming is a much more immersive and realistic experience.

They even envision haptic-tactile technologies creating whole new markets with applications that have not even been thought of today, providing European businesses with the tools to become more competitive.

Obiettivo

The rapid development of Virtual Reality has been very impressive during the past 15 years. However the main focus so far has been on visual perception, supported by developments in computer graphics. Clearly, humans have more senses beyond vision and there have been considerable attempts to integrate jointly acoustic and visual perception channels. Despite the previous achievements, the progress in VR systems as to incorporating haptic perception in a multimodal interaction paradigm is far less satisfying and still at the beginning. As an illustration for this new research on multimodal interaction, we choose as example "Multimodal perception of textiles in the virtual environment". HAPTEX proposes to develop new avenues for research that enable a person to perceive, touch and manipulate textiles. Significant advances in existing technology are necessary in order to integrate the visual and haptic/tactile interfaces to achieve the complete virtual experience of a physical object. The main research issues are: Development of physics based techniques to model the behavior of textile; Development of a visual model that enables realistic rendering of the textile; Design of an interface that enables both tactile and haptic rendering; Synchronization of the multiple sensory feedback to create a consistent and physically possible experience. Each of these individual problems is very challenging and will lead to the development of novel techniques in the respective areas. HAPTEX provides a platform for experts in these individual areas to work in conjunction with each other to reach a common goal of generating a realistic, efficient multimodal experience. We expect HAPTEX to investigate how far it is possible to provide a user with a completely reliable sense of fabric through a virtual experience. The project has many applications for the textile industry, but the main impact will be the significant advancement of multimodal interaction tools, techniques and know-how.

Contatto coordinatore

Nadia Magnenat-Thalmann, (Coordinator)
Tel.: +41-223797769
Fax: +41-223797780
E-mail

Coordinatore

UNIVERSITE DE GENEVE
Switzerland

Contributo UE: EUR 452 000


RUE DU GENERAL DUFOUR 24
1211 GENEVE
Switzerland
Activity type: Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Contatto amministrativo: Nadia Magnenat-Thalmann
Tel.: +41223797769
Fax: +41223797780
E-mail

Partecipanti

GOTTFRIED WILHELM LEIBNIZ UNIVERSITAET HANNOVER
Germany

Contributo UE: EUR 345 160


Welfengarten 1
30167 HANNOVER
Germany
Activity type: Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Contatto amministrativo: Franz-Erich Wolter
Tel.: +495117622910
Fax: +495117622911
E-mail
TAMPEREEN TEKNILLINEN YLIOPISTO
Finland

Contributo UE: EUR 188 360


KORKEAKOULUNKATU 10
33720 TAMPERE
Finland
Activity type: Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Contatto amministrativo: Harriet Meinander
Tel.: +358331154456
Fax: +358331154515
E-mail
SCUOLA SUPERIORE DI STUDI UNIVERSITARI E DI PERFEZIONAMENTO SANT'ANNA
Italy

Contributo UE: EUR 368 980


PIAZZA MARTIRI DELLA LIBERTA 33
56127 PISA
Italy
Activity type: Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Contatto amministrativo: Massimo Bergamasco
Tel.: +39050883287
Fax: +39050883333
THE UNIVERSITY OF EXETER
United Kingdom

Contributo UE: EUR 309 480


THE QUEEN S DRIVE NORTHCOTE HOUSE
EX4 4QJ EXETER
United Kingdom
Activity type: Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Contatto amministrativo: Ian R. Summers
Tel.: +441392264083
Fax: +441392264111
E-mail