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Journal Articles Modelling, measurement and control C Year : 2020

Power Wheelchair Virtual Reality Simulator with Vestibular Feedback

Abstract

Autonomy and the ability to maintain social activities can be challenging for people with disabilities experiencing reduced mobility. In the case of disabilities that impact mobility, power wheelchairs can help such people retain or regain autonomy. Nonetheless, driving a power wheelchair is a complex task that requires a combination of cognitive, visual and visuo-spatial abilities. In practice, people need to pass prior ability tests and driving training before being prescribed a power wheelchair by their therapist. Still, conventional training in occupational therapy can be insufficient for some people with severe cognitive and/or visio-spatial functions. As such, these people are often prevented from obtaining a power wheelchair prescription from their therapist due to safety concerns. In this context, driving simulators might be efficient and promising tools to provide alternative, adaptive, flexible, and safe training. In previous work, we proposed a Virtual Reality (VR) driving simula-integrating vestibular feedback to simulate wheelchair motion sensations. The performance and acceptability of a VR simulator rely on satisfying user Quality of Experience (QoE). Therefore, our simulator is designed to give the user a high Sense of Presence (SoP) and low Cyber-sickness. This paper presents a pilot study assessing the impact of the vestibular feedback provided on user QoE. Participants were asked to perform a driving task whilst in the simulator under two conditions: with and without vestibular feedback. User QoE is assessed through subjective questionnaires measuring user SoP and cyber-sickness. The results show that vestibular feedback activation increases SoP and decreases cyber-sickness. This study constitutes a mandatory step before clinical trials and, as such, only enrolled people without disabilities.
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Dates and versions

hal-03215753 , version 1 (03-05-2021)

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Guillaume Vailland, Yoren Gaffary, Louise Devigne, Valérie Gouranton, Bruno Arnaldi, et al.. Power Wheelchair Virtual Reality Simulator with Vestibular Feedback. Modelling, measurement and control C, 2020, 81, pp.35 - 42. ⟨10.18280/mmc_c.811-407⟩. ⟨hal-03215753⟩
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