Concept of OmniFiber
Thin linear forms are a humble yet ubiquitous geometric building blocks found throughout nature and the human body. For example, human skeletal muscle tissues, which help navigate our locomotion and consciously controlled movements, are a bundle of muscle fiber modules that compose 30% of our body weight. Such primitive artificial muscle fibers resembling those in the human body have been explored in the field of robotics as flexible exoskeletons to assist body movements. In this work, we utilize such thin and flexible fiber form factor as a configurable building-block to create dynamic movement-based interactions.
OmniFiber is a novel method in designing interactions with dynamic motion using a fiber form factor based on thin fluid-actuated artificial muscle fibers. The design system is based on thin McKibben muscles that consist of filaments wrapped around elastomeric chambers surrounded by a woven sleeve that mechanically alters the actuation behavior. Our actuators are thin (ø=600μm to 1.6mm) and flexible enough improving conformability of artificial muscles for wearables, while having fast response time (> 100 Hz), and high force output (F→ 15N).