Irish Collaborative Project Shows Potential Of VR Data Glove

A collaboration of Irish business and academic institutions creates low-latency data glove for VR use.

Data and haptic gloves are starting to enter the market as a more precise and flexible alternative to traditional controllers or motion control wands. Though their advantages in terms of immersion are obvious, it is only recently that technology has begun to catch up with the ideal. A team of researchers and developers in Ireland hope to take another step towards the dream of the smart glove with a new collaborative project that will be on display at CES 2018.

The Smart Glove in question is also known as the Haptic Human Computer Interface System of VR/AR, but the team behind the project primarily refer to the device simply as the Smart Glove. The Smart Glove was developed as part of a project between the Wireless Sensor Networks group at Tyndall National Institute, Ireland and the Telecommunications Software & Systems Group, or TSSG at the Waterford Institute of Technology, with additional help from product and design consultancy business Design Partners. The partnership was created with the aim of making a device that could provide virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) users with a fully immersive, touch-sensitive experience.

The Smart Glove integrates a wide range of sensors, actuators and data algorithms in a way that allows for precisely calibrated position, movement and hand biomechanical data that can be tracked in real-time with extremely low latency. Components and materials were chosen with an eye to making the Data Glove robust, low cost and washable.

Thanks to its low latency, prototypes of the device have been used by medical students for training in surgery, and the creators of the Smart Glove hope the device can also be used to enable smart factory technologies as well as videogaming and social media.

Director of Innovation at TSSG, Kevin Doolin, comments: “the smart glove shows how collaboration between experts in hardware and software can lead to game-changing products being developed by Irish R&D Institutes. This is a key technology enabler unlocking the ability to create truly immersive VR experiences across a variety of sectors and is making a significant impact with some of the largest technology companies.”

The Smart Glove will be demonstrated at CES 2018 at Booth #60108 as part of the Design and Source Showcase in Tech East. VRFocus will also be present at the event, bringing you all the latest from the show floor.

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