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Feeling textures through a probe: effects of probe and surface geometry and exploratory factors.

journal contribution
posted on 01.05.2003 by Roberta Klatzky, Susan J. Lederman, Cheryl Hamilton, Molly Grindley, Robert Swendsen

Vibratory roughness perception occurs when people feel a surface with a rigid probe. Accordingly, perceived roughness should reflect probe and surface geometry, exploratory speed, and force. Experiments 1 and 2 compared magnitude estimation of roughness with the bare finger and two types of probes, one designed to eliminate force moments, under the subject's active control. Experiments 3 and 4 varied speed under passive control. Log magnitude was consistently a quadratic function of log spacing between elements in the surface. The location of the function's peak was related to the drop point--that is, the spacing at which the probe can just drop between elements--which is affected by probe tip diameter, element height, and speed. Other parameters of the quadratic were affected by probe type and speed.