A High-Level Haptic Interface for Enhanced Interaction within VirtoolsTM

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Poyade, Matthieu ; Reyes-Lecuona, Arcadio ; Leino, Simo-Pekka ; Kiviranta, Sauli ; Viciana-Abad, Raquel ; Lind, Salla (2009)

Haptics is the outstanding technology to provide tri-dimensional interaction within Virtual Environments (VE). Nevertheless, many software solutions are not fully prepared to support Haptics. This paper presents a user-friendly implementation of Sensable Phantom haptic interfaces onto the interactive VE authoring platform, Virtools 4.0. Haptics implementation was realized using the Haptic Library (HLAPI) from OpenHaptics toolkit 2.0 which provides highly satisfactory custom forces effects. The integration of Phantom interaction at end-user development fulfils logical VE interactive authoring under Virtools. Haptics implementation was qualitatively assessed in a manual maintenance case, a welding task, as a part of the national Finnish project, VIRVO. Manipulation enhancements provided by the integration of Phantom interaction in Virtools suggest many further improvements for more complicated industrial pilot experiments as a part of the European Commission funded project ManuVAR.
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