Somnomat: A novel device to investigate the influence of vestibular stimulation on sleep
Crivelli F., Heinicke L., Omlin X., Riener R.
Sleep disorders affect about one third of the general population. Rocking movements may help to shorten sleep onset latency and enhance sleep quality. However, from a scientific point of view, the relation between vestibular stimulation and sleep remains unclear. This paper presents a novel device to investigate the influence of vestibular stimulation on sleeping human subjects. The developed device includes two actuated bed platforms allowing to provide adjustable rocking motion along five different movement axes: three translations along the longitudinal, lateral, and vertical body axes, and two swing-like rotations along longitudinal and lateral direction. The robotic platforms have been designed in order to fulfil the special requirements of sleep research. Rocking trajectories with linear velocity below 15 cm=s ensure smooth, confortable, and quiet conditions (Leq < 40 dBA) for all the five axes. The presented approach will allow to systematically investigate the influence of different kinds of rocking movement on human sleep.