Introduction to Haptics
Students in this class will learn how to build, program, and control haptic devices, which are mechatronic devices that allow users to feel virtual or remote environments. In the process, students will gain an appreciation for the capabilities and limitations of human touch, develop an intuitive connection between equations that describe physical interactions and how they feel, and gain practical interdisciplinary engineering skills related to robotics, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, bioengineering, and computer science.
To participate in lab assignments (which is not strictly required to receive a Statement of Accomplishment), the participant will need to acquire/build the components of a Hapkit, and assemble and program the device. Laboratory assignments using Hapkit will give participants hands-on experience in assembling mechanical systems, making circuits, programming Arduino-based micro-controllers, and testing their haptic creations. After the course, we hope that you will continue to use and modify your Hapkit, and let us know about your haptic creations. Please note that you can still participate in the online course without the Hapkit and receive a Statement of Accomplishment, but you will not be able to do most of the laboratories.
The required background for this course is high-school physics (non-calculus is fine) and pre-calculus. Programming is experience is helpful, but not required. Haptic device design, robotics, and mechatronics experience are not required -- this is designed as a gateway course for these topics.
Allison Okamura, Professor, Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science
Melisa Orta, Ph.D. student, Mechanical Engineering