Department of Business Development and Technology

Design of Personalized Wearable Haptic Interfaces to Account for Fingertip Size and Shape

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


  • Monica Malvezzi, Dept. of Information Engi- neering and Mathematics, University of Siena, Siena, Italy, Italy
  • Francesco Chinello
  • Domenico Prattichizzo, Dept. of Information Engi- neering and Mathematics, University of Siena, Siena, Italy, Dept. of Advanced Robotics, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genova, Italy, Univ Siena, University of Siena, Dept Informat Engn & Math, Italy
  • Claudio Pacchierotti, CNRS at Irisa and Inria Rennes Bretagne Atlantique, Rennes, France, Italy
The size and shape of fingertips vary significantly across humans, making it challenging to design wearable fingertip interfaces suitable for everyone. Although deemed important, this issue has often been neglected due to the difficulty of customizing devices for each different user. This article presents an innovative approach for automatically adapting the hardware design of a wearable haptic interface for a given user. We consider a three-DoF fingertip cutaneous device, composed of a static body and a mobile platform linked by three articulated legs. The mobile platform is capable of making and breaking contact with the finger pulp and re-angle to replicate contacts with arbitrarily-oriented surfaces. We analyze the performance of this device as a function of its main geometrical dimensions. Then, starting from the user's fingertip characteristics, we define a numerical procedure that best adapts the dimension of the device to: (i) maximize the range of renderable haptic stimuli; (ii) avoid unwanted contacts between the device and the skin; (iii) avoid singular configurations; and (iv) minimize the device encumbrance and weight. Together with the mechanical analysis and evaluation of the adapted design, we present a MATLAB script that calculates the device dimensions customized for a target fingertip as well as an online CAD utility for generating a ready-to-print STL file of the personalized design.
Original languageEnglish
JournalIEEE Transactions on Haptics
Pages (from-to)266 - 272
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Research areas

  • Legged locomotion, Haptic Interfaces, Sahpe, Kinematics, End effectors, Wearable computers, Performance evaluation

See relations at Aarhus University Citationformats

ID: 219443134