Dexterous manipulation is a fundamental skill to improve interaction capabilities of service and industrial robots, and develop prosthetic devices that enable amputees to regain hand functionality, for improving their independence and quality of life and for reintegration in working environments.
The sense of touch is crucial for any skilled manipulation; it is fundamental to establish contact and acquire the information needed for hand/object interactions, and for perceiving variations in the contact itself (slip, vibrations, duration, pressure).
Touch is crucial for robots that physically interact with objects and humans, to sense the properties of objects, learn how to use them, and enable cooperation. Touch is crucial for the successful deployment of prosthetic devices, to evoke a natural sensation of contact that conveys information about the stimulus, making prostheses easier to use and accept.
NeuTouch aims at improving artificial tactile perception in robots and prostheses, by understanding how to best extract, integrate and exploit tactile information at system level.