A Grasp and Arm Force Feedback System

Period of Performance: 07/30/1998 - 07/30/2000


Phase 2 STTR

Recipient Firm

Virtual Technologies, Inc.
2175 Park Blvd
Palo Alto, CA 94306
Principal Investigator

Research Institution

Stanford University
3160 Porter Drive, Suite 100
Palo Alto, CA 94304
Institution POC

Research Topics


This document is a proposal for an STTR Phase II award entitled "A Grasp and Arm Force Feedback System." The purpose of the Phase I award which preceded it was to construct, analyze and evaluate a working prototype of a precision two-fingered grasp-force-feedback hand master, CyberGrasp , for use in telerobotic, virtual reality and other intuitive interface applications. In producing more than it proposed, Virtual Technologies developed a four-fingered version of the device, and also constructed an arm-force-feedback device, CyberForce, which was not scheduled until Phase II. These prototypes allowed Virtual Technologies, Inc., to investigate methods for providing useful force feedback (haptic feedback) to the user. This proposal details how Phase I objectives were exceeded and what Virtual Technologies plans to accomplish during a Phase II award. The ultimate goal of Phase II will be to deliver a fully-functional five-fingered grasp-force-feedback device for the hand which works in conjunction with a high-fidelity arm-force-feedback device. Virtual Technologies is working closely with a team of telemanipulation experts who have been enlisted to evaluate the feedback device's performance. These experts, led by Professor Mark Cutkosky of the Dextrous Manipulation Laboratory at Stanford University, are intimately familiar with the requirements for successful telemanipulation. During Phase I, Dr. Cutkosky's research group performed initial testing of the device to determine its suitability as a telerobotic interface and the group has committed to conducting extensive testing during a phase II award, for both telerobotic and virtual reality applications. The group will also be responsible for developing advanced grasping algorithms.