Sensing squeeze

Sensing squeeze

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Rebecca Stern (MAKE and CRAFT author!) has a cool project sensing “squeeze” she writes –

I’m researching squeeze sensing as a mode of tactile interface. Here I will cover the process of developing a squeezeable sensor and the firmware/software concerns associated with interpreting the data from the sensor. This fulfills the “sensor project” for my class called Computational Principles in Media Arts taught in AME at ASU by Todd Ingalls and Hari Sundaram.

First off, how do we sense “squeeze?” People squeeze all kinds of things: lemons, steering wheels, loved ones, toothpaste and other toiletries, pimples, stress balls, hand exercisers. I would like to focus on the latter two, which provide a therapeutic activity for those with Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). Using flex sensors arranged in a certain pattern on a spherical object, in this case a rubber dog toy, one can capture whenever the ball is squeezed.

Sensing squeeze – Link.

4 thoughts on “Sensing squeeze

  1. screaminscott says:

    I seem to remember a hobby robotics solution for touch sensors that did something similar.

    It used the conductive foam that integrated circuits are packaged in. By placing foil on either side, and measuring the change in current flowing thru the foam, you could tell how close the foil pieces were, and therefore how much the foam was being squeezed.

  2. aplumb says:

    Issue 177 of Circuit Cellar had some info about possibly using Peratech‘s quantum tunneling composite (QTC) for robotic sensing.

    Haven’t used it myself though.

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