Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Plucked from thin air: New musical glove brings a whole new meaning to playing the computer

14.04.2010
Nimble fingers glide over invisible strings while the sound of a guitar blasts from the speakers. It might look like just another air guitar routine, but here the sounds really do seem to have been plucked from thin air.

The technology behind this astonishing feat is a novel musical glove that transmits signals to a computer when the fingers of the glove are moved. But the glove can do more than just recreate guitar and piano sounds. The sensitive control system could find future use in robots and computer games. Scientists from Saarland University will be showcasing their invention at Hannover Industrial Trade Fair from 19-23 April (Hall 2, Stand C 44).

The musical glove is fitted with magnetic and acceleration sensors and is able to measure the motion of the hand and the individual fingers. "We don't just record where a particular finger is at any one moment and how it is bent, we can also continuously measure the position of the entire hand", says Esther Tesfagiorgis, part of the team of mechatronics students at Saarland University that developed the musical glove.

A computer program then translates the motions of the hand into musical notes. So far the glove has been programmed to simulate guitar and piano sounds. The orientation of the left hand determines which of the instruments is to be simulated. If the left hand moves horizontally, palm downward, the glove simulates a piano, if the left hand is rotated through 180° to leave the palm uppermost, the glove switches into guitar mode.

"But the sensitivity of the control system means that there are many of other potential applications. For instance, the system could be used to record sign language or to manually control computer games or robots," explains Esther Tesfagiorgis, whose team has filed an application to patent the invention. The sensor-controlled glove could also be used for the kind of delicate hand movements required in surgical operations. The glove is fitted with an acceleration sensor on one side of the hand and with permanent magnets on the palm of the hand that generate a magnetic field. So-called magnetoresistive sensors are located on one side of the first section of each finger. "When the hand moves, the magnetic field changes. This change in the magnetic field is registered by the sensors and transformed into an electric voltage. These voltages are then recorded by a device and processed in the computer as a signal," explains Tesfagiorgis.

The team of four mechatronic students from Saarbrücken entered their invention for the nationwide Cosima competition (Contest of Students in Microsystem Applications) at last year's Microsystems Technology Congress in Berlin and won first prize. Winning the Cosima contest automatically qualified the group for the international student competition i-Can that was held in January 2010 in Xiamen, China, where competing against 17 other student groups from six countries, the Saarbrücken team once again came out on top.

Questions can be addressed to:

Prof. Dr. Hartmut Seidel
Lehrstuhl für Mikromechanik
Universität des Saarlandes
Phone: +49 (0)681 302-4416
E-mail: seidel@lmm.uni-saarland.de
Esther Tesfagiorgis
Tel. +49 (0)511 8949-7101 (during trade fair)
Note for radio journalists: Studio-quality telephone interviews can be conducted with researchers at Saarland University using ISDN codec technology. Interview requests should be addressed to the university's Press and Public Relations Office (+49 (0)681 302-3610).

Friederike Meyer zu Tittingdorf | idw
Further information:
http://www.lmm.uni-saarland.de
http://www.uni-saarland.de/pressefotos

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Five developments for improved data exploitation
19.04.2017 | Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, DFKI

nachricht Smart Manual Workstations Deliver More Flexible Production
04.04.2017 | Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz GmbH, DFKI

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

Im Focus: Quantum-physical Model System

Computer-assisted methods aid Heidelberg physicists in reproducing experiment with ultracold atoms

Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...

Im Focus: Glacier bacteria’s contribution to carbon cycling

Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.

A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fraunhofer HHI with latest VR technologies at NAB in Las Vegas

24.04.2017 | Trade Fair News

New quantum liquid crystals may play role in future of computers

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A promising target for kidney fibrosis

21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>