Emerging Technologies

Superimposed Skin Pressure Sensor

We propose a new sensing technology that enables collection of touch information without affecting touch conditions as if a pressure sensor is superimposed on the skin. The main advantage of the proposed technology is to minimize interference of the sensing device, which is an important property of the sensor in ubiquitous CHI, high fidelity human motion analysis and low-key haptic communication system. The proposed sensing system is based on electromechanical property of the human skin. Because contact impedance changes according to skin contact pressure, touch information can be obtained by measuring the skin contact impedance. The measurement of skin contact impedance is achieved by using a grounded electrode and two signal electrodes to form a Whetstone bridge circuit. In particular, the proposed sensor is based on the resistive coupling rather than traditional capacitive sensing method. The proposed sensor can be located on any part of the body and provide tactile information with an excellent dynamic range. We show the performance of the developed sensor in several finger tasks, including pressing with an index finger, touching with a pen and pinching an object with a par of tweezers. The proposed sensing system is expected to be utilized in the various touch applications with an instrument as well as direct touch with an object.

Shunsuke Yoshimoto Osaka University

Yoshihiro Kuroda
Osaka University

Masataka Imura
Osaka University

Osamu Oshiro
Osaka University