Herbert Shea and Oliver Korn shaking “hands”.

Herbert Shea, head of the EPFL Soft Transducers Lab, and Oliver Korn, director of the ACI, met in Neuchâtel in June. They plan to cooperate in the area of soft haptics. While Herb’s group is one of the drivers of haptic interaction, the ACI’s work on embodiment and assistive systems offers excellent use cases. One such case is the European project SUITCEYES: the development of a smart interactive vest for persons with deafblindness.

The flexible haptic technologies developed by Herb’s team have the potential to greatly increase the accessibility of interaction devices for persons with reduced vision and hearing. At the same time, the force feedback on the hand (as in the glove below) allows interactions with objects in virtual reality or even in soft robotics. We look forward to working together.

The EPFL Soft Transducers Lab created gloves with soft haptic feedback (bottom) and even with force feedback (top) to allow interactions with virtual objects.