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Wearable finger exoskeleton for haptic interaction

Cutaneous feedbackFinger ExoskeletonHaptic deviceKinesthetic feedbackWearable

Introduction

The invention is a task-custom haptic finger exoskeleton device providing both kinesthetic stimuli along the finger and three-dimensional cutaneous force on the fingertip surface, either generated independently to each other or at the same time. The device can be used in a rehabilitative scenario, gaming, and remote control of manipulators.

Technical features

This finger exoskeleton device comprises a proximal portion, apt to be worn at the first phalanx of a finger, and a fingertip portion, apt to be fixed to a distal phalanx and provided with a distal clamp.

The proximal portion comprises a proximal servomotor, acting on a link having an elongated rod connected to fingertip portion, and  comprises a potentiometer to sense the rotation of link with respect to the proximal portion.

The fingertip portion comprises three different distal servomotors, displaced to form a triangle by their respective axes, and a haptic platform, rotatably linked to the axes of distal servomotors through respective arms. The haptic platform is positioned directly in contact to the finger pulp.

Possible Applications

  • Home rehabilitation, the patient may wear the device and repeat the assigned exercise several times;
  • Teleoperation, to perform remote tasks in industrial and medical scenarios;
  • Remote working;
  • Gaming;
  • Virtual and augmented reality.

Advantages

  • Low cost;
  • Easy and comfortable to wear;
  • Friendly and safe interaction with the device.