Mitra J. Z. Hartmann

Learn More
Several species of animals use whiskers to accurately navigate and explore objects in the absence of vision. We have developed inexpensive arrays of artificial whiskers based on strain-gage and Flex Sensor technologies that can be used either in passive (" dragging ") mode, or in active (" whisking ") mode. In the present work we explore the range of(More)
— Haptic interaction between people and machines might benefit from an understanding of haptic communication between one person and another. We recently reported results showing that two people performing a physically shared dyadic task can outperform either person alone, even when the perception of each participant is that the other is a hindrance [1].(More)
Several recent studies have investigated the problem of object feature extraction with artificial whiskers. Many of these studies have used an approach in which the whisker is rotated against the object through a small angle. Each small-angle " tap " of the whisker provides information about the radial distance between the base of the whisker and the(More)
During tactile exploration, rats sweep their whiskers against objects in a motion called whisking. Here, we investigate how a whisker slips along an object's edge and how friction affects the resulting tactile signals. First, a frictionless model is developed to simulate whisker slip along a straight edge and compared with a previous model that incorporates(More)
Limit cycle walkers are a class of bipeds that achieve stable locomotion without enforcing full controllability throughout the gait cycle. Although limit cycle walkers produce more natural-looking and efficient gaits than bipeds that are based on other control principles such as zero moment point walking, they cannot yet achieve the stability and(More)
We have constructed a FPGA-based "early neural circuit simulator" to model the first two stages of stimulus encoding and processing in the rat whisker system. Rats use tactile input from their whiskers to extract object features such as size and shape. We use the simulator to examine the plausibility of the hypothesis that neural circuits in the rat's brain(More)
Existing techniques utilizing bio-inspired robotic whisker sensory systems generally address object feature extraction with artificial whiskers as a mechanical problem. We present an alternative signal-processing approach that formulates the object shape recognition as a 2-D tactile imaging problem. Observing that the whisker position at the very initial(More)
Observation of terrestrial mammals suggests that they can follow the wind (anemotaxis), but the sensory cues underlying this ability have not been studied. We identify a significant contribution to anemotaxis mediated by whiskers (vibrissae), a modality previously studied only in the context of direct tactile contact. Five rats trained on a five-alternative(More)
The kinematics of human walking are largely driven by passive dynamics, but adaptation to varying terrain conditions and responses to perturbations require some form of active control. The basis for this control is often thought to take the form of entrainment between a neural oscillator (i.e., a central pattern generator and/or distributed counterparts)(More)