Highly sensitive soft tactile sensors for an anthropomorphic robotic hand
4226 - 4233
IEEE Sensors Journal
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© 2001-2012 IEEE.This paper describes the design and realization of novel tactile sensors based on soft materials and magnetic sensing. In particular, the goal was to realize: 1) soft; 2) robust; 3) small; and 4) low-cost sensors that can be easily fabricated and integrated on robotic devices that interact with the environment. We targeted a number of desired features, the most important being: 1) high sensitivity; 2) low hysteresis; and 3) repeatability. The sensor consists of a silicone body in which a small magnet is immersed; an Hall-effect sensor placed below the silicone body measures the magnetic field generated by the magnet, which changes when the magnet is displaced due to an applied external pressure. Two different versions of the sensor have been manufactured, characterized, and mounted on an anthropomorphic robotic hand. Experiments, in which the hand interacts with real-world objects, are reported.