SenseGlove Nova 2.X
An evolution of the Nova 2.0 - designed to improve tracking fidelity, ease of use, and to extend its haptic capabilities.
The Nova 2.0 is scheduled for release in Q4 2023, and is currently available for pre-order through the SenseGlove webshop.
The device consists of two separate parts; the “Hub” and “Soft Glove”, which can be separated. The Hub contains all sensors and actuators, while the Soft Glove is the wearable part that ensures a good fit to the body.
The Nova 2.0 provides 1 Degree of Freedom of Force-Feedback on the thumb, index finger, middle finger and ring finger. The glove does not provide force-feedback on the pinky finger. The system works by applying a brake force to the cables that run along the back of the hand, which inhibits the flexion movement. You are always able to extend your fingers, but you won’t be able to flex them past a certain point. The Nova’s Force-Feedback actuators do not pull on their cables; meaning that they cannot move the fingers for you, nor can the glove move by itself.
The Nova 2.0 can provide up to 20N of force along each finger that is equipped with a force-feedback motor. From an API level, one can set the force on each of these fingers with a single command, at a rate of up to 200Hz and a resolution of 100 steps.
Active Contact Feedback
The front strap of the Nova 2.0 can tighten itself by up to 5 mm with a force of up to 20 N, creating a pressure on the palm of the hand, akin to someone holding your hand.
From an API level, you can set the level of ‘pressure’ the strap exerts on the user, from 0 - 100%, at a rate of 200Hz.
This active feedback does not use no force-sensors; it uses a position sensor.
The Nova 2.0 has four (4) Linear Resonant Actuators (LRAs): Two vibration motors are located inside the front strap to play vibrations on the hand palm; one on the index-finger side, and one on the pinky-finger side. The other two vibration motors are located on the tip of the thumb and index finger. These last two vibration motors are connected to the Hub via conductive yarn inside the soft glove.
From an API level, one can send configurable waveforms to each individual actuator. These wavefroms can vary in (among other things) amplitude, duration and frequency, and can be sent at a rate of up to 100Hz per actuator.
The Nova 2.0’s LRA Resonant Frequency is around 170Hz.
The Nova 2.0 measures the flexion / extension of the thumb, middle finger and ringer finger with a single sensor each, and has two sensors to measure index finger flexion. In addition, it has a sensor to measure thumb abduction / adduction. The pinky finger flexion is linked to that of the ring finger. These movements are captured by measuring the extension of the cables on the Nova 2.0.
The Nova 2.0 measures cable extensions at a rate of 60 Hz, with a resolution of 0.03 mm. However, your calibration will ultimately determine the resolution of the hand pose calculated from this data.
The sensors used to measure this extension are not absolute: When restarting the glove, the sensor readings might differ. The cable extensions will also differ between users. It is therefore required to recalibrate the Nova 2.0 at the beginning of each session. This calibration runs on the glove. The SenseCom software offers a visual guide to accompany calibration, and our Unity Plugin has components to add a similar guide into your VR system.
The Nova 2.0 does not have built in hand-tracking: It cannot determine its position in 3D space by itself, and instead relies on mouting a 3rd party device, such as a Vive Tracker, onto the glove. Computer Vision models are being developed to track the Nova 2.0(s) in 3D space using camera systems, but these are still under heavy development.
Integrating the glove directly into a 3rd party system, such as the Vive Lighthouse system, would increase the size of the device, and limits it to that system only. Developing a tracking system built into the glove is not possible with the Nova 2.0’s current hardware.
The Nova 2.0 does contain an Inertial Measurement Unity (IMU). It uses a Magnetometer, Accelerometer and Gyroscope to measure the glove’s rotation relative to the earth’s magnetic field. You can combine the IMU with a 3rd party tracking device to include lower arm tracking into your simulation, though note that an additional calibration step will be required to map the movements of the IMU to the wrist.
The IMU takes a few seconds to calibrate - at which point, it might ‘snap’ to a new rotation. This only happens once, usually in the first few seconds of turning on the glove.
The Nova Gloves uses the Bluetooth 4.2 protocol. Specifically the Bluetooth 4.2 BR/EDR, with SPP (serial port profile).