Surround Haptics: Immersive Tactile Experiences

Project Members

Ali Israr (Disney Research Pittsburgh)
Ivan Poupyrev (Disney Research Pittsburgh)

The Surround Haptics technology is integrated with a wide variety of entertainment and media contents, such that the contents are not only seen and heard but also felt, simultaneously. The tactile contents are carefully created and synchronized with visual and auditory cues to create effective and immersive experiences and increase the interest of users while playing video games, watching movies, etc. The technology is integrated into theater seats, gaming chairs and vests, rides, gloves, shoes, hand-held devices and controllers, clothes, to create another dimension of sensory feedback. For example, while playing an intense driving simulation game, users feel road conditions, gravel, traction, acceleration, brake, explosions, collisions, etc.

See also Tactile Brush Algorithm


Principle Investigators:

Ali Israr / Disney Research, Pittsburgh
Ivan Poupyrev / Disney Research, Pittsburgh

Chair Design:

Mark Baskinger / CMU School of Design
Jason May / CMU School of Design
Natalia Olbinski / CMU School of Design
Luke Martin / CMU School of Design

Vest Design:

Chris Ioffreda / CMU School of Design
Cheng Xu / CMU School of Architecture


Moshe Mahle / Disney Research, Pittsburgh
Chris Ioffreda / CMU School of Design


Dr. Roberta Klatzky / Psychology Department, CMU

Split Second Game Developers:

Kenny Mitchell / Black Rock Studio, DIS
Huw Bowles / Black Rock Studio, DIS
Neil Hutchinson / Roundcube Entertainment Ltd.

Unity3D Game Developers:

Seung-Chan Kim / KAIST, S. Korea
Jan Stec / CMU-ETC


Karl Willis / Disney Research, Pittsburgh
Jim Cox / Black Rock Studio, DIS


Custom designed chair for Surround Haptics (~9mb image).

Gaming is more immersive with Surround Haptics (~9Mb image).

Combining driving simulator and Surround Haptics.

Presenting Surround Haptics at SIGGRAPH 2011.

Surround Haptics tactile pads can be easily added (~9Mb image).

Immersing yourself in movies with Surround Haptics (~9Mb image).

The user feels his virtual car as he drives it.

Surround Haptics can be worn on the body.

Tv and Radio

Printed and Web Media


Surround Haptics- Tactile Feedback for Immersive Gaming Experiences-Thumbnail

Surround Haptics: Tactile Feedback for Immersive Gaming Experiences
May 6, 2012
ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI) 2012
Paper File [pdf, 8.73 MB]

Surround Haptics- Sending Shivers Down Your Spine-Thumbnail

Surround Haptics: Sending Shivers Down Your Spine
August 31, 2011
ACM SIGGRAPH Emerging Technologies 2011
Paper File [pdf, 6.09 MB]

Exploring Surround Haptics Displays-Thumbnail

Exploring Surround Haptics Displays
April 14, 2010
ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI) 2010
Paper File [pdf, 765.28 kB]

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