Research lab creates haptic skin material for realistic feedback

pic: VRFocus website

The Organic Robotics Lab at Cornell University was at GTC 2017 (held in San Jose, USA) to reveal a prototype of its Omnipulse haptic technology, which combines soft rubber material with little pockets of air to create realistic feedback.

The Omnipulse is a thin sheet of rubber which resembles human skin, underneath the skin are pneumatics which provide feedback. The skin is connected to a tube of compressed air via a narrow hose.

When the user triggers any action in the VR system the compressed air is released strategically into the specific pockets necessary for copying the physical sensation of that action. At the GTC show the demo was able to replicate actions such as gun recoil, hitting a hammer against objects, punching objects.

At the moment Omnipulse is still in the early prototype stages and it’s unknown at this stage how it will appear in its finished stage.  At GTC the research lab told reporters it is looking at many different form factors, with the possibility to be made into gloves and even haptic suits.