Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

A psychophysical evaluation of haptic controllers: viscosity perception of soft environments

  • Hyoung Il Son (a1), Hoeryong Jung (a1), Doo Yong Lee (a2), Jang Ho Cho (a3) and Heinrich H. Bülthoff (a4) (a5)...

In this paper, human viscosity perception in haptic teleoperation systems is thoroughly analyzed. An accurate perception of viscoelastic environmental properties such as viscosity is a critical ability in several contexts, such as telesurgery, telerehabilitation, telemedicine, and soft-tissue interaction. We study and compare the ability to perceive viscosity from the standpoint of detection and discrimination using several relevant control methods for the teleoperator. The perception-based method, which was proposed by the authors to enhance the operator's kinesthetic perception, is compared with the conventional transparency-based control method for the teleoperation system. The fidelity-based method, which is a primary method among perception-centered control schemes in teleoperation, is also studied. We also examine the necessity and impact of the remote-site force information for each of the methods. The comparison is based on a series of psychophysical experiments measuring absolute threshold and just noticeable difference for all conditions. The results clearly show that the perception-based method enhances both detection and discrimination abilities compare with other control methods. The results further show that the fidelity-based method confers a better discrimination ability than the transparency-based method, although this is not true with respect to detection ability. In addition, we show that force information improves viscosity detection for all control methods, as predicted from previous theoretical analysis, but improves the discrimination threshold only for the perception-based method.

Corresponding author
*Corresponding author. E-mail:,
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

1. O. van der Meijden and M. Schijven , “The value of haptic feedback in conventional and robot-assisted minimal invasive surgery and virtual reality training: A current review,” Surg. Endosc. 23 (6), 11801190 (2009).

3. F. Tendick , S. Sastry , R. Fearing and M. Cohn , “Applications of micromechatronics in minimally invasive surgery,” IEEE/ASME Trans. Mechatronics 3 (1), 3442 (1998).

4. E. Heijnsdijk , A. Pasdeloup , A. Van der Pijl , J. Dankelman and D. Gouma , “The influence of force feedback and visual feedback in grasping tissue laparoscopicauy,” Surg. Endosc. 18 (6), 980985 (2004).

6. L. Jones and I. Hunter , “A perceptual analysis of viscosity,” Exp. Brain Res. 94 (2), 343351 (1993).

7. F. Huang , J. Patton and F. Mussa-Ivaldi , “Manual skill generalization enhanced by negative viscosity,” J. Neurophysiol. 104 (4), 20082019 (2010).

8. C. Steele , P. Van Lieshout and D. Goff , “The rheology of liquids: A comparison of clinicians subjective impressions and objective measurement,” Dysphagia. 18 (3), 182195 (2003).

9. S. Lederman , R. Klatzky , C. Tong and C. Hamilton , “The perceived roughness of resistive virtual textures: II. Effects of varying viscosity with a force-feedback device,” ACM Trans. Appl. Perception 3 (1), 1530 (2006).

10. T. Sheridan , “Telerobotics,” Automatica 25 (4), 487507 (1989).

11. P. Hokayem and M. Spong , “Bilateral teleoperation: An historical survey,” Automatica 42 (12), 20352057 (2006).

12. D. Lawrence , “Stability and transparency in bilateral teleoperation,” IEEE Trans. Robot. Autom. 9 (5), 624637 (1993).

13. K. Hashtrudi-Zaad and S. Salcudean , “Analysis of control architectures for teleoperation systems with impedance/admittance master and slave manipulators,” Int. J. Robot. Res. 20 (6), 419445 (2001).

14. M. Çavusoglu , A. Sherman and F. Tendick , “Design of bilateral teleoperation controllers for haptic exploration and telemanipulation of soft environments,” IEEE Trans. Robot. Autom. 18 (4), 641647 (2002).

15. G. De Gersem , H. Van Brussel and F. Tendick , “Reliable and enhanced stiffness perception in soft-tissue telemanipulation,” Int. J. Robot. Res. 24 (10), 805822 (2005).

16. P. Malysz and S. Sirouspour , “Nonlinear and filtered force/position mappings in bilateral teleoperation with application to enhanced stiffness discrimination,” IEEE Trans. Robot. 25 (5), 11341149 (2009).

17. D. Botturi , M. Vicentini , M. Righele and C. Secchi , “Perception-centric force scaling in bilateral teleoperation,” Mechatronics 20 (7), 802811 (2010).

18. H. I. Son , T. Bhattacharjee and H. Hashimoto , “Enhancement in operator's perception of soft tissues and its experimental validation for scaled teleoperation systems,” IEEE/ASME Trans. Mechatronics 16 (6), 10961109 (2011).

19. H. I. Son , T. Bhattacharjee and H. Hashimoto , “Effect of impedance-shaping on perception of soft tissues in macro-micro teleoperation,” IEEE Trans. Ind. Electron. 59 (8), 32733285 (2012).

20. Y. Sun and B. Nelson , “Biological cell injection using an autonomous microrobotic system,” Int. J. Robot. Res. 21 (10–11), 861868 (2002).

28. N. Diolaiti , G. Niemeyer , F. Barbagli and J. Salisbury , “Stability of haptic rendering: Discretization, quantization, time delay, and coulomb effects,” IEEE Trans. Robot. 22 (2), 256268 (2006).

33. M. MacFarlane , J. Rosen , B. Hannaford , C. Pellegrini and M. Sinanan , “Force-feedback grasper helps restore sense of touch in minimally invasive surgery,” J. Gastrointestinal Surg. 3 (3), 278285 (1999).

34. M. Tavakoli , A. Aziminejad , R. Patel and M. Moallem , “Methods and mechanisms for contact feedback in a robot-assisted minimally invasive environment,” Surg. Endosc. 20 (10), 15701579 (2006).

35. J. Peirs , J. Clijnen , D. Reynaerts , H. Brussel , P. Herijgers , B. Corteville and S. Boone , “A micro optical force sensor for force feedback during minimally invasive robotic surgery,” Sensors Actuators A: Phys. 115 (2–3), 447455 (2004).

38. U. Hagn , R. Konietschke , A. Tobergte , M. Nickl , S. Jörg , B. Kübler , G. Passig , M. Gröger , F. Fröhlich , U. Seibold , et al.DLR mirosurge: A versatile system for research in endoscopic telesurgery,” Int. J. Comput. Assist. Radiol. Surg. 5 (2), 183193 (2010).

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

  • ISSN: 0263-5747
  • EISSN: 1469-8668
  • URL: /core/journals/robotica
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 22 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 218 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 23rd June 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.