Development of a Flexible Corrugated Vibrotactile Actuator

Journal of Advanced Technology Research, Vol. 1, No. 1, pp. 43-48, Dec. 2016
10.11111/JATR.2017.1.1.006, Full Text:
Keywords: Flexible, Polymer, Actuator, Electrostatic Force, Vibrotactile

Polymer actuators such as an electroactive polymer offer the advantages of being flexible and easily expandable into an array-type device. Hence, several research efforts are underway to develop polymer- based tactile displays. It is a challenge, however, to develop a reliable and robust tactile array display based on the materials without losing the exibility. As a person uses a tactile display, while bene tting from the tactile feedback, the polymer actuator can frequently tear or experience a polymer breakdown. In an effort to overcome these limitations of polymer actuators, this study proposes the use of a corrugated polymer actuator that is actuated by electrostatic pressure for tactile display applications. The presented corrugated actuator array consists of a corrugated conductive membrane and a dielectric-coated exible printed circuit board (FPCB). The corrugated membrane is attached to the FPCB with a thin spacer. The polymer membrane is moulded into the corrugated shape to make it mechanically reliable and robust. To further prevent the peeling of compliant electrodes from the membrane, the membrane itself contains conductive particles. To prevent the polymer membrane from breaking down as a result of being dynamically actuated by high voltage waveform input, the input signal is kept within the FPCB, while the corrugated conductive membrane is connected to ground. When an input signal waveform is applied to the FPCB, therefore, the corrugated conductive membrane vibrates under the in uence of electrostatic pressure. This vibration changes the friction coef cient between the corrugated surface and the user’s ngertip while the user is scrubbing the membrane to interact with a virtual graphic environment. The corrugations amplify the displacement of the membrane vibrations by enhancing the elastic characteristics and also increase the variety of tactile sensations. To evaluate the performance of the developed corrugated tactile display, the acceleration intensity is measured with respect to frequency. The results clearly show that the developed tactile display creates suf cient vibrotactile feedback up to 200 Hz to convey tactile sensations to the user.

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Cite this article
[IEEE Style]
T. Yang, W. Park, S. Kim and S. Woo, "Development of a Flexible Corrugated Vibrotactile Actuator," Journal of Advanced Technology Research, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 43-48, 2016. DOI: 10.11111/JATR.2017.1.1.006.

[ACM Style]
Tae-Heon Yang, Won-Hyeong Park, Sang-Youn Kim, and Sam-Yong Woo. 2016. Development of a Flexible Corrugated Vibrotactile Actuator. Journal of Advanced Technology Research, 1, 1, (2016), 43-48. DOI: 10.11111/JATR.2017.1.1.006.