SenseGlove: from prototype to serial product

SenseGlove: from prototype to serial product

Start-up SenseGlove in Delft developed a VR glove that lets users feel and manipulate virtual objects. Spark helped to develop a product assembly that was suitable for serial production and with supplier sourcing: finding suppliers and producers.

Force feedback

The SenseGlove makes digital objects tangible by translating the tactile qualities of that object into so-called force feedback. In this case, this feedback comes from artificial tendons on the gloves that provide resistance in the fingers when the user touches, holds, or squeezes an object in virtual reality. Spark Project Leader Wichert Put: “So when you squeeze a virtual tennis ball, the more you squeeze it, the harder it gets.”

New assembly method

Originally, the prototype developed by SenseGlove took a few days production time per item. That’s too long. Put: “The fingers were particularly complex. So, in addition to issues such as cable management and sensors, we mainly looked at smarter production of the fingers so that fast and reliable assembly is possible. In a Design for Manufacturing (DfM) project, we developed a new assembly method in which the fingers can now be assembled and tested separately, and then integrated into the product.”

Substantiated costs

But we weren’t there yet, explains Put. “Next, we got around the table with injection moulding companies, assemblers, and electronics developers from our network. Among other things, we validated the feasibility of the design and compiled a set of substantiated costs. The latter was important for SenseGlove to find new investors and to further develop the product. And they’ve done just that. In the meantime, the first 200 gloves have been serially produced.”

Make the digital feel real

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