From stretchable electronics to miniature mobile robots, our experts are creating the next generation of robotics for human interaction through collaboration across disciplines.
Natural organisms have amazing abilities that inspire the field of robotics. How should ant-sized robots move and work together with thousands of microsensors? What can we learn from the movements of cats and cockroaches? How can we create robots and biohybrid robotic systems that are as robust and adaptable as animals? Our researchers are investigating these questions and more.
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Soft and wearable robotics
From sensitized artificial skin to stretchable electronics, from bio-hybrid robotics to prosthetic devices for robotic-assisted locomotion, our faculty are developing technologies for safe, minimally-restrictive human interaction.
Innovations include liquid-embedded elastomer electronics (LE3) for stretchable sensors and circuits.
Robots that walk, run, jump, creep, roll, and fly
Researchers explore legged robotics to design better controllers for robustly stable, energy efficiency, and fast locomotion, including the ability to travel reliably over unstructured terrain.
They create technologies for inspection of infrastructure, aerial load transportation, agricultural monitoring, autonomous point-to-point flight as well as investigating micro-scale robotics.
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Micro- and nano-robotics
Fabrication and control of magnetic microswimming robots assembled from microbeads and DNA nanostructures... bioinspired bots that walk on water and climb walls with nano-fiber adhesives... robotic devices for microsurgery and microsurgical tools....
These are a few examples of our research in micro- and nano-scale robotics, an area that requires a multidisciplinary, collaborative approach to problem solving.
Robots for special tasks
Whether its maneuvering through debris after a hurricane or repairing tankers under water, robots can perform tasks that are difficult and dangerous for humans.
Self-driving cars, the Internet of Things, and factory automation are areas where systems need to coordinate and communicate with other systems, devices, and humans. Precision, efficiency, and safety are critical.
Faculty involved: Amir Barati Farimani, Aaron Johnson, Kenji Shimada, Ding Zhao, Howie Choset (courtesy), Michael Kaess (courtesy), Changliu Liu (courtesy), Fatma Zeynep Temel (courtesy), Matthew Travers (courtesy), Wenzhen Yuan (courtesy)
Microrobots to navigate capillaries for drug delivery, temporary, non-invasive electronic tattoos for medical monitoring...these are a few examples of how our experts seek to improve human health through research that blends biomedical and mechanical engineering with robotics.
Diverse projects range from minimally-invasive miniature mobile robots, devices to improve mobility through mechanical assistance, computational, 3D imaging and simulation of organs and vessels, and surgical training tools.
450-million-year-old organism finds new life in Softbotics Opens in new window
Researchers in the Department of Mechanical Engineering used fossil evidence to engineer a soft robotic replica of pleurocystitids, a marine organism that existed nearly 450 million years ago and is believed to be one of the first echinoderms capable of movement using a muscular stem.
The Robotics Institute
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