Technical design of complex vision-tactile navigation system for using of blind persons navigation
Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Electrical and Automation, Kamýcká 129, CZ165 21 Prague, Czech Republic
This article presents the system used for navigation and orientation of blind persons in an unknown terrain. This system called ‘Tactile Navigation System’ constitutes a compensation instrument for blind persons. It is composed from three basic elements: a camera, a control unit and a tactile activator. The tactile navigation system converts the image from the camera to the tactile information and it transfers this information to the blind person. The blind person can recognize by vibration of the tactile activator placed on the antebrachium whether he comes on an impediment or if he can continue free walking. The main advantage of this system is the possibility of detecting any individual impediment earlier than using other common compensation tools, such as a simple blind stick, which is not a competitor with this device, but a helper. This way the system facilitates the orientation of a blind person an in an unknown terrain. The article describes in detail the overall composition and functionality of the system as well as the principle and function of its individual elements.