Jack Forman & Cedric Honnet

J. Gong*, O. Seow*, C. Honnet*, J. Forman, S. Mueller. "MetaSense: Integrating Sensing Capabilities into Mechanical Metamaterial." Proceedings of the 34th Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology. 2021.


In this paper, we present a method to integrate sensing capabilities into 3D printable metamaterial structures comprised of cells, which enables the creation of monolithic input devices for HCI. We accomplish this by converting select opposing cell walls within the metamaterial device into electrodes, thereby creating capacitive sensors. When a user interacts with the object and applies a force, the distance and overlapping area between opposing cell walls change, resulting in a measurable capacitance variation. To help designers create interactive metamaterial devices, we contribute a design and fabrication pipeline based on multi-material 3D printing. Our 3D editor automatically places conductive cells in locations that are most affected by deformation during interaction and thus are most suitable as sensors. On export, our editor creates two files, one for conductive and one for non-conductive cell walls, which designers can fabricate on a multi-material 3D printer. Our applications show that designers can create metamaterial devices that sense various interactions, including sensing acceleration, binary state, shear, and magnitude and direction of applied force.

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