Expressive, Scalable, Mid-air Haptics with Synthetic Jets

Non-contact, mid-air haptic devices have been utilized for a wide variety of experiences, including those in extended reality, public displays, medical, and automotive domains. In this work, we explore the use of synthetic jets as a promising and under-explored mid-air haptic feedback method. We show how synthetic jets can scale from compact, low-powered devices, all the way to large, long-range, and steerable devices. We built seven functional prototypes targeting different application domains to illustrate the broad applicability of our approach. These example devices are capable of rendering complex haptic effects, varying in both time and space. We quantify the physical performance of our designs using spatial pressure and wind flow measurements and validate their compelling effect on users with stimuli recognition and qualitative studies.



Shen, V., Harrison, C. and Shultz, C. 2024. Expressive, Scalable, Mid-Air Haptics with Synthetic Jets. ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction (TOCHI), 31, 2, Article 14 (April 2024). Presented at the 42nd Annual SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (May 11 – 16, 2024). ACM, New York, NY. 28 pages.

© Chris Harrison