, , , , & , A plenum-based calibration device for tactile sensor arrays, IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters 3, 3937–3943 (2018). DOI  PDF


In modern robotic applications, tactile sensor arrays (i.e., artificial skins) are an emergent solution to determine the locations of contacts between a robot and an external agent. Localizing the point of contact is useful but determining the force applied on the skin provides many additional possibilities. This additional feature usually requires time-consuming calibration procedures to relate the sensor readings to the applied forces. This letter presents a novel device that enables the calibration of tactile sensor arrays in a fast and simple way. The key idea is to design a plenum chamber where the skin is inserted, and then the calibration of the tactile sensors is achieved by relating the air pressure and the sensor readings. This general concept is tested experimentally to calibrate the skin of the iCub robot. The validation of the calibration device is achieved by placing the masses of known weight on the artificial skin and comparing the applied force against the one estimated by the sensors.

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