Simulating Mass in Virtual Reality using Physically-Based Hand-Object Interactions with Vibration Feedback


Providing the sense of mass for virtual objects using un-grounded haptic interfaces has proven to be a complicated task in virtual reality. This paper proposes using a physically-based virtual hand and a complementary vibrotactile effect on the index fingertip to give the sensation of mass to objects in virtual reality. The vibrotactile feedback is proportional to the balanced forces acting on the virtual object and is modulated based on the object's velocity. For evaluating this method, we set an experiment in a virtual environment where participants wear a VR headset and attempt to pick up and move different virtual objects using a virtual physically-based force-controlled hand while a voice-coil actuator attached to their index fingertip provides the vibrotactile feedback. Our experiments indicate that the virtual hand and our vibration effect give the ability to discriminate and perceive the mass of virtual objects.

Graphics Interface 2021
Hooman Khosravi

Alumni M.Sc. Student

September 2017 - August 2021

Hooman was an MSc student interested in immersive simulation, Co-Supervised, Supervisor: Sonny Chan.