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Publication Summary and Abstract

Craig Bertram, Matthew H. Evans, Mahmood Javaid, Tom Stafford, and Tony J. Prescott (2013), Sensory Augmentation with Distal Touch: The Tactile Helmet Project, Biomimetic and Biohybrid Systems. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 8064, 2013, pp 24-35.

The Tactile Helmet is designed to augment a wearer's senses with long-range touch. Tactile specialist animals e.g. rats are capable of rapidly acquiring detailed environmental information from their whiskers using task-sensitive strategies. Providing similar information about the environment, in tactile form, to a human operator could prove invaluable for search and rescue, or partially-sighted people. Key aspects of the Tactile Helmet are sensory augmentation, and active sensing. A haptic display is used to provide users with ultrasonic range information. This can be interpreted in addition to visual or auditory information. Active sensing systems are “purposive, information-seeking sensory systems, involving task-specific control of sensory apparatus' [1]. The integration of an accelerometer allows the device to actively gate the delivery of sensory information to the user, depending on their movement. We describe the hardware, sensory transduction and characterisation of the Tactile Helmet device, outlining use cases and benefits of the system.
Article at publisher's website

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