Communicating through touch: Macro fiber composites for tactile stimulation on the abdomen

Paul Phamduy, John Ross Rizzo, Todd E. Hudson, Marina Torre, Kalle Levon, Maurizio Porfiri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Research into sensory substitution systems has expanded, as alternative senses are utilized in real-time to afford object recognition or spatial understanding. Tactile stimulation has long shown promise as a communicatory strategy when applied unobtrusively to the redundant surface areas of the skin. Here, a novel belt, integrating a matrix of macro fiber composites, is purposed to deliver tactile stimuli to the abdomen. The design and development of the belt is presented and a systematic experimental study is conducted to analyze the impact of frequency and duty cycle. The belt is a beta precursor to a soft haptic feedback device that will enable situational awareness and obstacle avoidance through the localization of tactile stimulation relative to a body-centric frame of reference in a local environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)174-184
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Haptics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018


  • Tactile stimulation
  • abdomen
  • macro fiber composites
  • vibrotactile

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications


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