Senseglove and Volkswagen have published a case study on the Nova haptic glove – with good results.
In 2021, the start-up Senseglove launched the new Nova VR glove, which, despite its compact form factor, should also offer a powerful haptic simulation. Volkswagen’s commercial vehicle division has published a report on the haptic glove. This is about the advantages of VR training with a glove.
VR training with many advantages
VW therefore saves costs during assembly training with VR glasses, as fewer trainees have to visit the in-house showrooms with real vehicles. New employees do not need an expensive real pre-production model at the beginning of their training and can even practice vehicle assembly in the home office. Only later do they have to implement the virtually learned hand movements on real commercial vehicles.
VR controllers have previously been used for virtual training. Advantage: Trainees cannot leave scratches or other damage to vehicles in VR. Disadvantage: The interaction is not natural with VR controllers. Trainees, for example, cannot grasp objects and feel their size as in the real world.
Furthermore, the conventional VR controller prevents some hand movements: exercisers cannot close their fingers as realistically as with a glove or release objects again.
Haptic gloves replace VR controllers
In the case study presented, this is changing: modern haptic gloves are used for the virtual installation of a sliding door on the T6 minibus.
Instead of bulky artificial joints, Senseglove has been using the Nova glove since tendon-like threads, which are moved by a motor on the back of the hand and stopped by magnetic friction brakes. They simulate up to two kilograms of weight per finger. Voice coil actuators on the thumb and index finger imitate the tactile sensation by vibration. For tracking the position, the manufacturer uses Vive trackers on the backs of the gloves.
“All the trainees who completed the T6 vehicle assembly training found working with the SenseGlove Nova more realistic than with the controller, simply because they could do more, such as touch things. It feels more realistic,“ explains Volkswagen trainer Marcos Antelo Barrio.
Trainees are now able to feel mountable parts when accessing and for each object To determine differences in size and density. According to the report, when connecting parts themselves, they intuitively detected collisions and felt subtleties like the vibrations of a drill. In combination, all this ensures a montage experience that is already very close to the classic, physical training.
The price for Senseglove Nova is 4.499 Euro net.