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Effect of saccades in tongue electrotactile stimulation for vision substitution applications.

Abdessalem Chekhchoukh 1, 2 Nicolas Vuillerme 2 Yohan Payan 3, * Nicolas Glade 2 
* Corresponding author
3 TIMC-IMAG-GMCAO - Gestes Medico-chirurgicaux Assistés par Ordinateur
TIMC-IMAG - Techniques de l'Ingénierie Médicale et de la Complexité - Informatique, Mathématiques et Applications, Grenoble - UMR 5525
Abstract : The visual substitution paradigm aims to facilitate the life of blind people. Generally one uses electro-stimulating devices where electrodes are arranged into arrays to stimulate the skin or the tongue mucosa to send signals of visual type to the subjects. When an electro-stimulation signal is applied continuously (e.g. when static visual scenes are displayed for a long period of time), the receptors of the affected region can get saturated and the patient may lose the displayed information. We propose here some mechanisms that ameliorate the quality of perception of the electro-stimulation information. The electrical signal is encoded as 2D scenes projected onto the tongue via a Tongue Display Unit, i.e. an electro-tactile stimulator formed by a 12×12 matrix of electrodes. We propose to apply stochastic saccades on this signal. Our assumption is that this eye-inspired mechanism should make the visual substitution more efficient (by improving the perception) because of the reduction of the tactile receptors saturation. The influence of saccades was evaluated by a series of experiments. Results revealed a benefit on the persistence of perception due to saccades. This work helps to prevent the saturation of receptors on the tongue. Therefore increasing the quality of vision by the way of the electro-stimulation. It allows new enhancement features to retinal prosthesis devices which suffer from the same phenomenon.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-00873912
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 16, 2013 - 4:32:33 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, October 18, 2022 - 4:20:25 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, April 7, 2017 - 11:58:25 AM

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Abdessalem Chekhchoukh, Nicolas Vuillerme, Yohan Payan, Nicolas Glade. Effect of saccades in tongue electrotactile stimulation for vision substitution applications.. Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc, 2013, 2013, pp.3543-3546. ⟨10.1109/EMBC.2013.6610307⟩. ⟨hal-00873912⟩

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