Olfactory Display Based on Ink Jet Printer Mechanism and Its Presentation Techniques

Olfactory Display Based on Ink Jet Printer Mechanism and Its Presentation Techniques

Sayumi Sugimoto (Keio University, Japan) and Kenichi Okada (Keio University, Japan)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2521-1.ch020
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Considering the recent increase of interest in the transmission of olfactory information alongside audio/visual information, the authors have developed an olfactory display, based on an inkjet printer mechanism, which emits scents for short periods of time and has high control and provides repeated stable pulse emissions of scents. By using pulse emission, the authors achieved chronological control for presentation of scents and were able to synchronize the pulse with human inspiration. Such synchronization is important because humans detect scents when they breathe in, inhaling scent molecules in the air. Applying pulse emission, the authors measured various human olfactory characteristics; furthermore, they developed scent presentation techniques to create perspective and to switch scents rapidly. This chapter introduces details about the olfactory display and scent presentation techniques using pulse ejection.
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Research on the transmission of olfactory information together with audio/visual information is ongoing. Work first started in the 1950s with Heilig (1962) developing Sensorama, the first Virtual Reality (VR) system presenting olfactory and audio/visual information together. More recently, the virtual space system “Friend Park,” developed by Tominaga et al. (2001), provides users with an increased sense of reality by generating the aroma of a virtual object or environment, where the aroma is defined as the area in which a scent can be perceived.

Kaye (2004) describes several systems that add scents to Web content, where computer-controlled olfactory displays, such as iSmell (Washburn, et al., 2004,) and Osmooze (2011), are utilized in these systems. Another type of display, the air cannon olfactory display (Yanagida, et al., 2003), has been proposed and generates toroidal vortices of a scent in order to present it within a restricted space.

Nakamoto et al. (2001) designed an odor blender device that presents scents of virtual objects remotely. The system first analyzes the odors to be transmitted and describes each odor by using a composition ratio of scent elements. By using the ratio found by the smell analysis, on the receiver side, the target smell is reproduced with a feedback control by emitting scent elements contained within the receiver. However, this system cannot be used to present a random scent.

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