The world's first graphic tactile display makes th

2022-08-06
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The world's first graphic tactile display: let the blind feel the image

recently, the electronic engineers who jointly invented the electret microphone joined hands again to develop the world's first graphic tactile display for the blind. Jameswest is an electrical engineer who has won the national science and technology medal, the highest honor in the United States. His research work is to use the charged polymer film of electret to convert motion into electrical signals

in the tactile display project funded by the National Science Foundation of the United States, West responds to the movement of its surface by sending signals to electrically charged polymers, hoping to turn the concept into reality. The researchers hope that their efforts will lead to graphical displays that blind people can feel with their hands

the project is called "dynamic tactile interface for amblyopic and blind people". Ilonakretzschma, a professor of engineering at City University of New York, is the leader of the research team. For example, she said that she wanted to "develop a feasible dynamic tactile interface, so that graphics and picture information can be presented in tactile rather than visual space in a real-time manner."

currently, monitors used by blind people are very expensive, even though they are limited to text and lack a complete touch screen. On the other hand, the tactile display device designed by Kretzschmar, West and other collaborators will include an integrated touch screen so that users can press various areas of the screen to activate menus and other graphical icons that they feel exist. Due to the ability to display graphic images and activate them by touch, the entire graphic information display currently available on the computer may eventually be used by the blind

"the amount of information available to amblyopic and blind people will increase dramatically," Kretzschmar said

In 1962, West and gerhardsessler invented the electret microphone at Bell Laboratories. Their main market share in China is that the permanently charged polymer membrane is added to the condenser microphone as the diaphragm, so there is no need to charge it. As a polar plate of the capacitor, the polymer membrane is permanently charged, and the sound modulates the signal from the diaphragm through the vibrating diaphragm

in the new tactile display device, this mechanism will be retained, and the movement of the polymer membrane will still be caused by the electrical signal. In the three-layer display, the top layer is composed of polymer film, which works opposite to the electret microphone. The electrical signal is sent to the polymer membrane pixel by pixel, and the membrane responds by raising slightly. The middle layer film will enable the embedded electrodes of each pixel to be addressed by the top layer. The underlying display will support a touch screen where users can press icons, buttons, and other graphical screen units with their fingers instead of the mouse. The supporting software will also combine the auditory feedback function to facilitate the navigation of graphs and charts

the contribution of material scientist Kretzschmar to the project is to synthesize a nano bead called Janus (from the Roman god Janus). The two halves of the nano bead are made of different materials to cover the surface of the tactile display. By using tiny Janus particle electrodes to cover the charged polymer film, his team hopes to accelerate the motion of a tactile pixel when touching it, so that a person can feel the image more easily

it will take at least three years to complete this research project. Researchers who have contributed to it include vivientartter, a researcher Professor at the City University of New York; Karengourgey, director of amblyopia computer center of Baru University; Thrasospappas, Professor of electronic engineering, Northwestern University; And leighabts, a professor at the University of Maryland at the University Park

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