3D-Printed Tactile Maps Created to Help Visually Impaired Students Navigate on Campus

Published by , October 9, 2018 1:32 pm

(3Ders.org) Howard Kaplan, a visualization specialist at the University of South Florida (USF) in Tampa, has created a unique 3D-printed tactile version of emergency route maps for classrooms on the USF campus for people who are visually impaired. Maps marking emergency exit routes are required by law to be posted in public buildings, but these are essentially useless to the visually impaired.
Kaplan developed an encoding system that creates tactile symbols, ensuring they have a proper height, texture and depth for proper finger navigation. “This project is very important to USF and Students with Disabilities Services because it promotes equity and inclusion for visually impaired students,” said Dani Thiel, coordinator for Students with Disabilities Services.