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January 25, 2018 | Touch screens: localized impulses for more accurate haptic feedback

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Monkey Business -

Researchers at List*, a CEA Tech institute, used time-reversal wave focusing to generate localized impulses on the surface of touch screens.

The touch screens used in today's smartphones and tablets give users feedback through diffuse vibrations. One of the challenges researchers are trying to overcome is to provide more accurate feedback by generating a sensory signal only at a precise location on the screen's surface. A team of researchers at List successfully used time-reversal wave focusing—well-known and widely used in medicine for two decades—to improve haptic feedback.

The researchers placed piezoelectric actuators around the edges of a planar surface to generate waves that come together at a specific point on the surface. They also developed and patented a method for the real-time interpolation of the command signals that can focus the waves on any point on the surface based on a reduced set of pre-calibrated points. The result is a very precise localized impulse that can move quickly and continuously.

The rapid movement of the focus point under the user's fingertip and the modulation of the point's amplitude over time vary the touch sensations produced, making it possible to create touch icons with the "feel" of virtual buttons, for instance. List is now working on integrating these advances into electronic devices using thin-layer actuator deposition technologies.

*List earned the prestigious Institut Carnot seal in 2006 (Institut Carnot TN@UPSaclay).



January 3, 2018 | CARFIT and the CEA establish laboratory on artificial intelligence applied to automotive vibration data analysis

carfitCARFIT and the CEA recently signed an agreement to establish a joint research lab to investigate artificial intelligence applied to automotive vibration data and data interpretation. The laboratory will be staffed by researchers from List, a CEA Tech institute, and CARFIT and will focus on developing artificial intelligence methods capable of identifying the signs of mechanical failure from vibration data.

CARFIT is developing a real-time monitoring technology for cars that will ultimately power a smart maintenance system tailored to driver habits. CARFIT, which brings together automotive-industry specialists, research scientists, and artificial intelligence experts, will leverage the joint lab to expand its predictive maintenance capabilities by using automotive vibration data analysis.

List has been developing artificial intelligence technologies for several years, focusing both on neural network architectures and on advanced algorithms. The CEA and CARFIT bring a complementary range of disciplines to the partnership. The two organizations will run joint R&D programs that will lead to the design and development of an innovative architecture that will take advantage of deep learning to provide more accurate diagnostics, predict failures, and maximize the coverage of mechanical failures on automotive components by analyzing vibration data. The R&D will apply to light utility vehicles (maximum authorized weight of 3.5 tons).

“As an automotive technology startup, a joint lab with the CEA marks a major step for CARFIT. The lab will boost our artificial intelligence capabilities beyond what we could have achieved alone and will create opportunities for us with automotive-industry stakeholders already working with the CEA,” said Nicolas Olivier, CEO, CARFIT.

“List is contributing to the automotive revolution by driving advances in driverless and connected vehicles and developing digital services,” said Philippe Watteau, Director, List. “Artificial intelligence is one of the major enablers of this revolution and our joint laboratory with CARFIT will pave the way for tomorrow’s automotive maintenance, which will be predictive and provided as a service.”

The joint lab is part of the Instituts Carnot automotive-industry initiative to make businesses in the automotive industry more competitive and attractive by facilitating access to innovation.