Emerging Thermal Technology Enabled Augmented Reality

Kaushik Parida, Hyunwoo Bark, Pooi See Lee
2021 Advanced Functional Materials  
In the past decade, remarkable progress has been made in the domain of augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR). The need for realistic and immersive augmentation has propelled the development of haptics interfaces-enabled AR/VR. The haptics interfaces facilitate direct interaction and manipulation with both real and virtual objects, thus augmenting the perception and experiences of the users. The level of augmentation can be significantly improved by thermal stimulation or sensing, which
more » ... itates a higher degree of object identification and discrimination. This review discusses the thermal technology-enabled augmented reality and summarizes the recent progress in the development of different thermal technology such as thermal haptics including thermo-resistive heater and Peltier devices, thermal sensors including resistive, pyroelectric, and thermoelectric sensors, which can be utilized to improve the realism of augmentation. The fundamental mechanism, design strategies, and the rational guidelines for the adoption of these technologies in AR/VR is explicitly discussed. The conclusion provides an outlook on the existing challenges and outlines the future roadmap for the realization of nextgeneration thermo-haptics enabled augmented reality. The ORCID identification number(s) for the author(s) of this article can be found under https://doi.org/10.1002/adfm.202007952. information into the user's environment. For instance, augmented visual information can be overlaid onto a patient while performing surgery, projected onto a car window to navigate while driving, and can also be utilized to provide real-time instructions to manufacturers in smart factories. [4] This technology has significantly improved the efficiency, productivity, consistency, and safety of operations in various industries. For instance, a doctor can learn virtual surgery by interacting with augmented tools and virtual organ. [5] Several commercial AR/VR products are creating a significant impact on various domains. Since the breakthrough in display technologies with the advent of the headmounted 3D displays, [6] remarkable progress has been made in the domain of AR/VR. These displays create a virtual, computer-generated environment to augment the perception and experiences of the users. Although these display technologies provide a certain level of virtual experiences, the demand for more realistic and practical augmentation propelled the development of haptics interfaces. Utilizing haptics interfaces, the user can directly interact with real and virtual objects. The user can experience the sensation of touching a virtual object by mechanical and thermal stimulations, and the motion of the hand in real space can be projected in virtual space by sensing the movements and thermal properties. The thermal stimulation/sensing is one of the most crucial components of the haptics interface. It facilitates the identification and discrimination of objects, reinforces emotional stimulations and augmentations, and facilitates the translation of any real object into a touch interface, thus significantly improves the level of simulated-reality. Herein, this review highlights the latest progress in the domain of thermal technology-enabled augmented reality. We first introduce and explicitly discuss the AR/VR technology and the utilization of haptics interfaces to improve the interaction of the user with the augmented domain. Subsequently, we summarize the recent progress in the development of various thermal technologies. Furthermore, we explicitly discuss the technology related to thermal haptics including thermoresistive heater (TRH) and Peltier devices, and thermal sensors including resistive, pyroelectric, and thermoelectric with particular attention on the strategies to improve the stimulations and sensing performance. Specifically, we outline the rational guidelines for the adoption of these technologies which can potentially revolutionize and redefine the ways humans perceive and interact with the real and augmented domain. Lastly, we concluded this article by outlining the key challenges and delineate the key future direction for the progress of thermohaptics based augmented reality.
doi:10.1002/adfm.202007952 fatcat:croy3r5mfbawxghckhwagwtw2q