17 years ago
strictly speaking this isn't directly about robotics but I know that
robotics people are the ones most likely to have ideas about this, and
you might find it interesting too. I'm looking for a way to measure
how much pressure an infant is putting on a squeezy object that is put
into its hand (I'm a researcher in child development), and have the
measurement input into a computer so I can record the pressure time
I'm not that bothered about what form the object takes so long as it
is easily squeezed (although it doesn't have to deform a lot it
should deform a bit) and it can fit in an infant hand. It's seems to
me that the best way to do this is to use an air bladder with a
pneumatic pressure sensor.
Now what I am hoping is that such a device might already exist,
available off the shelf as it were. Anyone know? If not, I suppose it
shouldn't be too hard to make one up from an air bladder attached to
an air pressure sensor. Anyone got any advice for good components to
use? I'd need a pressure sensor which works at the appropriate
pressure range (i.e. from atmospheric pressure up to atmospheric
pressure plus a little bit because the bladder might be inflated plus
however much a baby can squeeze), and which has a USB output and comes
with USB drivers which provide an API (or some other equally simple way
to use the data in my own programs).
To make the air bladder, my best idea would be to use polythene tubing
with very thin walls (so it's very flexible). Anyone know a good
source for that kind of thing?
What would be nice would be if the pressure sensor was small enough to
go inside the tube so that the device trailed only the data wire,
rather than a pneumatic tube. We're talking 6 to 12 month olds, so it
can't be much more than an inch in diameter.
Many thanks for any suggestions!
Dr. Ben Kenward
Department of Psychology
Uppsala University, Sweden