How the Mechanical Properties and Thickness of Glass Affect TPaD Performance

Heng Xu*, Michael A. Peshkin, J. Edward Colgate

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


One well-known class of surface haptic devices that we have called Tactile Pattern Displays (TPaDs) uses ultrasonic transverse vibrations of a touch surface to modulate fingertip friction. This article addresses the power consumption of glass TPaDs, which is an important consideration in the context of mobile touchscreens. In particular, based on existing ultrasonic friction reduction models, we consider how the mechanical properties (density and Young's modulus) and thickness of commonly-used glass formulations affect TPaD performance, namely the relation between its friction reduction ability and its real power consumption. Experiments performed with eight types of TPaDs and an electromechanical model for the fingertip-TPaD system indicate: 1) TPaD performance decreases as glass thickness increases; 2) TPaD performance increases as the Young's modulus and density of glass decrease; and 3) real power consumption of a TPaD decreases as the contact force increases. Proper applications of these results can lead to significant increases in TPaD performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number9153158
Pages (from-to)483-492
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Haptics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2020


  • TPaD.
  • Ultrasonic friction reduction
  • mechanical properties
  • power consumption
  • vibration velocity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications


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