Exploring Biomimetic Stiffness Modulation and Wearable Finger Haptics for Improving Myoelectric Control of Virtual Hand

Hong Zeng, Weijie Yu, Dapeng Chen, Xuhui Hu, Dingguo Zhang, Aiguo Song

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (SciVal)


The embodiment of virtual hand (VH) by the user is generally deemed to be important for virtual reality (VR) based hand rehabilitation applications, which may help to engage the user and promote motor skill relearning. In particular, it requires that the VH should produce task-dependent interaction behaviors from rigid to soft. While such a capability is inherent to humans via hand stiffness regulation and haptic interactions, yet it have not been successfully imitated by VH in existing studies. In this paper, we present a work which integrates biomimetic stiffness regulation and wearable finger force feedback in VR scenarios involving myoelectric control of VH. On one hand, the biomimetic stiffness modulation intuitively enables VH to imitate the stiffness profile of the user's hand in real time. On the other hand, the wearable finger force-feedback device elicits a natural and realistic sensation of external force on the fingertip, which provides the user a proper understanding of the environment for enhancing his/her stiffness regulation. The benefits of the proposed integrated system were evaluated with eight healthy subjects that performed two tasks with opposite stiffness requirements. The achieved performance is compared with reduced versions of the integrated system, where either biomimetic impedance control or wearable force feedback is excluded. The results suggest that the proposed integrated system enables the stiffness of VH to be adaptively regulated by the user through the perception of interaction torques and vision, resulting in task-dependent behaviors from rigid to soft for VH. copy 2001-2011 IEEE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1601 - 1611
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.. All rights reserved.


  • Behavioral sciences
  • biomimetic stiffness modulation
  • Electromyography
  • Impedance
  • impedance control
  • Modulation
  • Muscles
  • Task analysis
  • task-dependent interaction behavior
  • Torque
  • virtual reality
  • wearable finger haptics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • General Neuroscience
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation


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