Haptic Feedback Powered by Ultrasound
Ultrahaptics is a system for creating haptic feedback in mid-air. Waves of ultrasound displace the air, creating a pressure difference. By causing many waves to arrive at the same place simultaneously, a noticeable pressure difference is created at that point. With this method, we are able to create multiple, concurrent points of haptic feedback in mid-air.
Graham Wilson, Tom Carter, Sriram Subramanian and Stephen Brewster, Perception of Ultrasonic Haptic Feedback on the Hand: Localisation and Apparent Motion, ACM CHI 14, April 2014.
Graham Wilson, Euan Freeman, Tom Carter, Sue Ann Seah, Steve Brewster, Sriram Subramanian, Ultrasonic Haptic Feedback for Gestural Interfaces using a Moveable Hand-Mounted Array. IEEE WorldHaptics 2013. (Daejon, Korea)
Jason Alexander, Mark T. Marshall, Sriram Subramanian, Adding Haptic Feedback to Mobile TV. Extended Abstracts of the International Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. April 2011. [PDF, 289 kB][ACM Digital Library]
Jason Alexander, Mark T. Marshall, Sriram Subramanian, Increasing the Appeal of Mobile TV Using Haptic Feedback. CHI 2011 Workshop on Video Interaction – Making Broadcasting A Successful Social Media. May 2011. [PDF, 63 kB]
- 'Feel' objects in thin air: The future of touch technology. CNN International. 29 October 2013.
- Ultrasonic force field provides tactile sensations in midair. Gizmag. 11 October 2013.
- New Haptic Tech Promises Feeling and Texture for Touchscreens and Gestures. IEEE Spectrum. 9 October 2013.
- New technology brings 'Minority Report' screens a step closer. The Telegraph. 9 October 2013.
- Minority Report-style technology arrives: Introducing hands-free touch-screen 'ultrahaptics'. The Independent. 8 October 2013.
- Researchers Create Mid-Air Haptic Feedback System For Touch Displays. Slashdot. 7 October 2013.
- 'Forcefield' technology creates tactile objects from thin air. The Guardian. 7 October 2013.
- Invisible force field gives touchscreens a new feel. New Scientist. 7 October 2013.
- Soon, Touchscreens At Malls And Stores Will Touch You Back. Fast Company. 7 October 2013.
- UltraHaptics – it’s magic in the air. University of Bristol, Press Release. 7 October 2013.
- Researchers laugh in the face of flatness with new approaches to haptic displays (video). engadget. 7 October 2013.
- Ultrasound system gives virtual feeling of objects in mid-air. UPI. 7 October 2013.
- UltraHaptics—it's magic in the air (w/ Video). Phys.org. 7 October 2013.
- Ultrasound system provides contactless tactile feedback. The Institute of Engineering and Technology. 7 October 2013.
- Be Moved By Ultrasound. WIRED Magazine UK. August 2012.
- Ultra-tangible technology manipulated with ultrasound levitation. WIRED.co.uk 13 July 2012.
- One touch towards the future. Bristol University. July 2012
Creating Focal Points:
- Waves of ultrasound displace the air creating a pressure difference. This is called acoustic radiation pressure.
- By focussing many ultrasound waves to a point in mid-air, we can create a noticeable pressure difference.
- We create a focal point by triggering ultrasound tranducers with specific phase delays so that all sound waves arrive at the point concurrently.
Human Perception of Ultrasound:
We modulate the ultrasound so that it is perceived as a vibration on the skin. Changing the modulation frequency or pulsing the feedback gives different textures. By giving each feedback point a different modulation frequency, we can have different feedback, with different textures applied to the user at the same time.