Disney Research


Handshakes are common greetings, and humans, therefore, have strong priors of what a handshake should feel like. This makes it challenging to create compelling and realistic human-robot handshakes, necessitating the consideration of human haptic perception in the design of robot hands. At its most basic level, haptic perception is encoded by contact points and contact pressure distributions on the skin. This motivates our work on measuring the contact area and contact pressure in human handshaking interactions. We present two benchmarking experiments in this regard, measuring the contact locations in human-human/human-robot handshaking and the contact pressure distribution for handshakes with a sensorized palm. We present results from human studies with the benchmarking experiments, providing a baseline for comparison with robot hands as well as presenting new insights into human handshaking. We also show initial work in using these results for the evaluation of robot hands and progressing towards iterative design of robot hands optimized for social hand interactions.

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