Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation

Improving Robotic Assistant Dexterity

Main content start

DenseTact: 2nd generation robotic tactile fingertip

Project Motivation

As robotic assistants operate in complex, unstructured human-centered environments it becomes essential that robots 

  1. Have access to as much useful data as possible as they interact with the environment
  2. Be able to leverage that data using intelligent models of the environment 

Challenges for long term deployable robotic systems are 

  • Being able to handle uncertainty in a known environment
  • Being able to reason about the properties of a new object/element in their environment 
  • Recovering from failure to complete a task/objective

By equipping robots to handle these challenges, we can develop robotic platforms that are capable of sustained, reliable, long-term service deployment.

Research Objectives

Research objectives include: 

  • Design: Can we leverage anthropomorphic inspiration in a curved fingertip capable of deforming and sensing friction?
  • Modeling: Can we efficiently model a continuous curved fingertip with high resolution (in a computationally tractable way) and characterize stable grasps?
  • Motion Planning: Can we leverage these efficient, continuous models of our fingertips to plan multi-finger grasps for in-hand manipulation?






Current Students

Related Publications


Touch-GS: Visual-Tactile Supervised 3D Gaussian Splatting

DenseTact-Mini: an optical tactile sensor with a soft, rounded, smooth gel surface and compact design equipped with a synthetic fingernail. We propose three distinct grasping strategies: tap grasping using adhesion forces such as electrostatic and van der Waals, fingernail grasping leveraging rolling/sliding contact between the object and fingernail, and fingertip grasping with two soft fingertips.

Inter-Finger Small Object Manipulation with DenseTact Optical Tactile Sensor

Embedded Object Detection and Mapping in Soft Materials Using Optical Tactile Sensing

We present DenseTact: Optical Tactile Sensor for Dense Shape Reconstruction