Tactile sensory substitution for robots to aid persons with quadriplegia (Quadbot)

This study was a collaborative project with Nicola Ferrier at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Robotics and Intelligent Systems Laboratory. The project period was 1998–2000, and the principal investigator was Mitchell Tyler

Project Summary

This project developed a first prototype tactile feedback system for a tongue-controlled robot to assist persons with quadriplegia. We expect the tactile feedback to enhance the ease and speed with which users may manipulate objects using the robot. The block diagram below illustrates this concept schematically.

Project Publications

This work is published in: N. Droessler, D. Hall, M. E. Tyler and N. J. Ferrier, Tongue-based electrotactile feedback to perceive objects grasped by a robotic manipulator: Preliminary results, in Proc. 23rd Annu. Int. Conf. IEEE Eng. Med. Biol. Soc., Istanbul, IEEE, 2001.

Our Research

Founded in 1992, the Tactile Com­mu­nication & Neurorehabilitation Laboratory (TCNL) is located at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

We are a research center that uses the experience of many different areas of science to study the theory and application of applied neuro­plasticity, the brain’s ability to re­or­ganize in response to new informa­tion, needs, and pathways.

Our research is aimed at developing solutions for sensory and motor disorder rehabilitation.