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As well as being a Core Team Member of Robohub, and Robotics Industry Futurist, Andra Keay is the Managing Director of Silicon Valley Robotics, the non-profit industry group supporting innovation and commercialization of robotics technologies. Andra is also founder of the Robot Launch global startup competition, Robot Garden maker space, Women in Robotics and is a mentor, investor and advisor to startups, accelerators and think tanks, with a strong interest in commercializing socially positive robotics and AI. She joins CITRIS People and Robots Research Group as a Visiting Scholar.



by , and   -   November 22, 2020


“Fearless Girl should provide the spark to inspire more female engineers”, writes Elizabeth Croft, Dean and Faculty of Engineering at Monash University.

“Girls are natural engineers, highly capable in maths and physics. We need to show them that these tools can be used to design a better world.So far, we’ve done a poor job of communicating to girls the very powerful impact they can make through an engineering career.” Croft continues, providing us with the inspiration to introduce the second of our new series of Women in Robotics Updates, featuring Elizabeth Croft, Helen Greiner and Heather Knight from our first “25 women in robotics you need to know about” list in 2013.

by , and   -   November 16, 2020

In spite of the amazing contributions of women in the field of robotics, it’s still possible to attend robotics conferences or see panels that don’t have a single female face. Let alone seeing people of color represented! Civil rights activist Marian Wright Edelman said that “You can’t be what you don’t see”. Women in Robotics was formed to show that there were wonderful female role models in robotics, as well as providing an online professional network for women working in robotics and women who’d like to work in robotics. We’re facing an incredible skill shortage in the rapidly growing robotics industry, so we’d like to attract newcomers from other industries, as well as inspiring the next generation of girls. Introducing the first of our new series of Women in Robotics Updates, featuring Sarah Bergbreiter, Aude Billard and Cynthia Breazeal from our first “25 women in robotics you need to know about” list in 2013.

by   -   October 21, 2020

We’d like to share the video from our 2020 Ada Lovelace Day celebration of Women in Robotics. The speakers were all on this year’s list, last year’s list, or nominated for next year’s list! and they present a range of cutting edge robotics research and commercial products. They are also all representatives of the new organization Black in Robotics which makes this video doubly powerful. Please enjoy the impactful work of:

by   -   July 28, 2020
Protein-based artificial muscles for soft robotic actuators
Series of protein-based artificial muscles, with performance exceeding that of biological muscle. Other soft robotic parts could include soft grippers and soft actuators. IMAGE: ABDON PENA-FRANCESCH, LEAD AUTHOR OF THE PAPER AND A FORMER DOCTORAL STUDENT IN DEMIREL’S LAB (NOW STARTING HIS OWN GROUP IN UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN).

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Repeated activity wears on soft robotic actuators, but these machines’ moving parts need to be reliable and easily fixed. Now a team of researchers has a biosynthetic polymer, patterned after squid ring teeth, that is self-healing and biodegradable, creating a material not only good for actuators, but also for hazmat suits and other applications where tiny holes could cause a danger.

by   -   July 14, 2020

LIVESTREAM JULY 20 at 12pm PDT https://youtube.com/c/siliconvalleyrobotics

by   -   June 27, 2020

In times of crisis, we all want to know where the robots are! And young roboticists just starting their careers, or simply thinking about robotics as a career, ask us ‘How can robotics help?’ and ‘What can I do to help?’. Cluster organizations like Silicon Valley Robotics can serve as connection points between industry and academia, between undergrads and experts, between startups and investors, which is why we rapidly organized a weekly discussion with experts about “COVID-19, robots and us” (video playlist).

by   -   June 25, 2020

Talking about racism and its impact on robotics and roboticists was the first conversation in our new monthly online discussion series “Society, Robots and Us” on last Tuesday of the month at 6pm PDT. It was a generous, honest and painful discussion that I hope has left a lasting impact on everyone who listened. There is systemic racism in America, and this does have an impact on robotics and roboticists in many many ways. UPDATE: Black in Robotics has launched on twitter and online https://blackinrobotics.org

by   -   June 24, 2020

From Mexican immigrant to MIT, from Girl Power in Latin America to robotics entrepreneurs in Africa and India, the 2019 annual “women in robotics you need to know about” list is here! We’ve featured 150 women so far, from 2013 to 2018, and this time we’re not stopping at 25. We’re featuring 30 inspiring #womeninrobotics because robotics is growing and there are many new stories to be told.

From driving rovers on Mars to improving farm automation for Indian women, once again we’re bringing you a list of 25 amazing women in robotics! These women cover all aspects of the robotics industry, both research, product and policy. They are founders and leaders, they are investigators and activists. They are early career stage and emeritus. There is a role model here for everyone! And there is no excuse – ever – not to have a woman speaking on a panel on robotics and AI.

The four-legged design of ANYmal allows the robot to conquer difficult terrain such as gravel, sand, and snow. Photo credit: ETH Zurich / Andreas Eggenberger.

ANYbotics led the way in the ICRA 2018 Robot Launch Startup Competition on May 22, 2018 at the Brisbane Conference Center in Australia. Although ANYbotics pitched last out of the 10 startups presenting, they clearly won over the judges and audience. As competition winners, ANYbotics received a $3,000 prize from QUT bluebox, Australia’s robotics accelerator (currently taking applications for 2018!), plus Silicon Valley Robotics membership and mentoring from The Robotics Hub.

by   -   May 3, 2018

Both are crowdfunding right now — Magni has only 1 week days to go and Misty has just launched today. Both robots come from pedigree robotics companies and both robots are top of the line in terms of capabilities. And I have to confess, I’m a sucker for great robot crowdfunding campaigns so have purchased one of each for Silicon Valley Robotics and Circuit Launch.

by and   -   January 15, 2018

The 2018 Nissan Leaf receives CES2018 Tech For a Better World Innovation Award.

Cars, cars, cars, cars. CES2018, the Consumer Technology Association’s massive annual expo, was full of self driving electric and augmented cars. Every hardware startup should visit CES before they build anything. It has to be the most humbling experience any small robotics startup could have. CES2018 is what big marketing budgets look like. And as robotics shifts more and more to consumer facing, this is what the competition looks like.

by   -   December 17, 2017

The Robot Launch global startup competition is over for 2017. We’ve seen startups from all over the world and all sorts of application areas – and we’d like to congratulate the overall winner Semio, and runners up Apellix and Mothership Aeronautics. All three startups met the judges criteria; to be an early stage platform technology in robotics or AI with great impact, large market potential and near term customer pipeline.

by   -   December 12, 2017

Three very different robotics startups have been battling it out over the last week to win the “Robohub Choice” award in our annual startup competition. One was social, one was medical and one was agricultural! Also, one was from the UK, one was from the Ukraine and one was from Canada. Although nine startups entered the voting, it was clear from the start that it was a three horse race – thanks to our Robohub readers and the social media efforts of the startups.