First and foremost, each product should fulfil its function. However, the quality of a product subjectively perceived by the customer becomes more and more important and considerably contributes to the purchase decision. Human perception however, is a complex interaction of sensual impressions such as for instance visual and haptic perceptions. Above all the haptic and visual properties of materials play an important role everywhere where covering materials and materials for the interior are used such as in the automotive and the furniture industries. In these fields they are important quality attributes.
Objectifying human perception, meaning conversion of it into scalable sizes, is one task of the scientist at this department. Human perceptions are reproduced using objective measurement and assessment tools. Important parameters in this regard are friction properties, surface structures, their formability as well as the parameters of heat behaviour and moisture management relevant in terms of haptics. In this connection a special haptics standard leather used as friction partner simulates the human friction and deformation properties.
These parameters are correlated to data of subjective, human perceptions, which are determined in human subject research performed at the institute. Thereof strategies are developed, in order to exactly adjust the haptic-sensory properties of a product. In addition to standardised measurement methods the department has a unique portfolio of very special measurement procedures. Thus, materials can be characterised which are similar to a construction component and which are in a deformed condition.