2018 MRS Fall Meeting Home

Symposium GI02—Materials for Next-Generation Robotics

Over the past 50 years Robotics has evolved to its current state in which the field is now a ubiquitous part of our daily lives. The field continues to expand into new application areas to perform ever more complex tasks that humans cannot do or at scales that humans cannot reach. The rapid advance of robotic systems in recent years has largely been due to increases in computing performance, and there has been little change in the way robots are assembled or in the choice of materials, actuators and sensors that are used to drive current robotic systems. However, exciting advances in materials science, including the development of soft materials, energy harvesting systems, and the adoption of smart bio-inspired design principles suggest radically new ways to construct and operate robots. The development of new materials holds the key for enabling the next generation of robots that can overcome the limitations of traditional bulky, hard, and power-hungry systems. In this symposium new material systems, actuators, and methods for energy harvesting, as well as methods for fabrication, assembly, potential miniaturization, and integration into robotic systems will be discussed. The meeting will focus on radially new design approaches and novel material systems for robotics at all scales.

Topics will include:

  • New actuators and artificial muscles
  • Novel soft materials and robots
  • Intelligent, self-healing and learning materials
  • Material development for the efficient powering of robots
  • Active, molecular, and metamaterial systems enabled robotic systems
  • Micro- and nanofabrication and 3D printing for robotics
  • Micro and nanorobotic systems
  • Advances in integrated and wearable systems

Invited Speakers:

  • Nikolaus Correll (University of Colorado, USA)
  • Michael Dickey (North Carolina State University, USA)
  • James Friend (University of California, San Diego, USA)
  • Kenjiro Fukuda (University of Tokyo, Japan)
  • Wei Gao (California Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Christoph Keplinger (University of Colorado Boulder, USA)
  • Cecilia Laschi (Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna, Pisa, Italy)
  • John Madden (The University of British Columbia, Canada)
  • Barbara Mazzolai (Center for Micro-BioRobotics IIT Pisa, Italy)
  • Daniela Rus (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Ayusman Sen (The Pennsylvania State University, USA)
  • Sergei Sheiko (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, USA)
  • Atshushi Shishido (Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan)
  • Metin Sitti (Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Germany)
  • Elisabeth Smela (University of Maryland, USA)
  • Michael Strano (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Zhong Lin Wang (Georgia Institute of Technology, USA)
  • Robert Wood (Harvard University, USA)
  • Li Zhang (The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)

Symposium Organizers

Peer Fischer
Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems
Micro Nano and Molecular Systems Laboratory

Donglei (Emma) Fan
The University of Texas at Austin
Walker Department of Mechanical Engineering

Rebecca Kramer-Bottiglio
Yale University

Bradley Nelson
ETH Zürich
Institute for Robotics und Intelligent Systems

Keywords for Abstract Submission

Energy storage and harvesting, Fabrication and assembly, Muscles and actuators, Soft robotics

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