6-DOF magnetically levitated haptic interface

[With research engineers Ruediger Six and Simon Bachmann,  lab alumni Niall Parker , supported by IRIS/PRECARN ].

The goal of this research project is the design and control of a high fidelity, small motion range, inexpensive haptic interface.

In prior work, we have proposed and demonstrated the effectiveness of Lorentz magnetic levitation in teleoperation [Salcudean et al '95] and mechanism emulation [Salcudean and Vlaar '95] by using the UBC maglev joystick.

Relative to prior designs, this haptic interface, called PowerMouse,  features a novel geometry, a novel optical sensor and optimized actuation [Salcudean and Parker, 1997] . These allow for all the electronics and control microprocessor to be integrated  in its base, with the device tapering from a handle 4" high to a footprint of 11"x5.5". The device has a maximum translational motion range of 3 mm limited by the actuation gap, and a  maximum rotational motion range of  +-5 degrees, limited by the sensor motion range. The moving mass of less than 300 grams will have maximum accelerations in excess of 150 m/s/s, and will be able to exert continuous forces as large as 16N. A table of characterisitics can be found in  [Salcudean and Parker, 1997] .

PowerMouse, a desktop magnetically levitated haptic interface.

PowerMouse cubic flotor and stator mount on PCB.

PowerMouse flotor. A light cubic levitated structure with coils embedded in its faces.

PowerMouse stator. Twentyfour magnets are arranged in a cubic structure matching the flotor coils.