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Virtually whack it with a responsive tennis racket

作者:潘尢裥    发布时间:2019-03-01 03:15:08    

By Michael Slezak VIRTUAL tennis might soon become a lot less virtual. A game controller that can twist, deflect and vibrate could bring a new level of realism to video-game tennis by simulating the impact of a ball. In a real game, when a player hits the ball, the racket recoils with an equal and opposite reaction – in accordance with Newton’s third law of motion. With the advent of motion- and gesture-based controllers, video games that simulate tennis have become popular. But they have mostly ignored the physical interaction of the ball and racket. Now Fong Wee Teck and colleagues from the Institute for Infocomm Research at the Agency for Science, Technology and Research in Singapore have developed a haptic controller that looks a lot like a normal tennis racket. Its head moves and twists, creating opposite forces on the handle that make it feel as if a ball is hitting the head. Connecting the head to the handle are two actuators that can push and pull each side in different directions, generating up to 60 g, a force equivalent to 60 times the gravitational pull of Earth, a bit less than the 100 g routinely generated during a tennis match. A vibration element enhances the feeling of realism by changing its frequency depending on how the virtual ball “strikes” the racket. In a real game, Fong says, the human “sensory system can discern the variations in these vibrations”. “Maybe the ball was hitting harder or maybe your racket string is of different quality. We can simulate this,” Fong says. The team will present their research in August at the SIGGRAPH conference in Los Angeles. “Maybe the ball was hitting harder,

 

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