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Research & Innovation

by   -   December 22, 2020

Carlotta Berry

A few days ago, Robotics Today hosted an online seminar with Professor Carlotta Berry from the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. In her talk, Carlotta presented the multidisciplinary benefits of robotics in engineering education. In is worth highlighting that Carlotta Berry is one of the 30 women in robotics you need to know about in 2020.

Winning team pilot Sander Koomen
Winning team pilot Sander Koomen

In continuation to this series of CYBATHLON 2020 winners, today we feature the victory of PULSE Racing from VU University Amsterdam. We also had the chance to interview them (see the end of this post).

interview by   -   December 16, 2020

Abate interviews Benjamin “Pietro” Filardo, CEO and founder of Pliant Energy Systems. At PES, they developed a novel form of actuation using two undulating fins on a robot. These fins present multiple benefits over traditional propeller systems including excellent energy efficiency, low water turbulence, and an ability to maneuver in water, land, and ice. Aside from its benefits on a robot, Pietro also talks about its advantages for harnessing energy from moving water.

Watch this episode on YouTube

On Friday the 11th of December, Nikolas Martelaro (Assistant Professor at Carnegie Mellon’s Human-Computer Interaction Institute) gave an online seminar on ways robot design teams can do remote user research now (in these COVID-19 times) and in the future. If you missed it, you can now watch the recorded livestream.

HSR Enhanced team
Winning team: HSR Enhanced with pilot Florian Hauser

In continuation to this series of CYBATHLON 2020 winners, today we feature the victory of the HSR Enhanced team from the Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences (OST). In addition, we interviewed their team leader of this year, Christian Bermes.

Team Angel Robotics 1
Winning team: Angel Robotics with pilot Byeong-Uk Kim

The last edition of CYBATHLON took place on 13-14 November, 2020. This competition, created by ETH Zurich and run as a non-profit project, aims to advance in the research and development of assistive technology by involving developers, people with disabilities, and the general public. We had the chance to interview the winning team of the powered exoskeleton race, Angel Robotics from South Korea.

Sensor sleeve
Graduate student Moritz Graule demonstrates a fabric arm sleeve with embedded sensors. The sensors detect the small changes in the Graule’s forearm muscle through the fabric. Such a sleeve could be used in everything from virtual reality simulations and sportswear to clinical diagnostics for neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s Disease. Credit: Oluwaseun Araromi/Harvard SEAS

By Leah Burrows / SEAS communications

Newly engineered slinky-like strain sensors for textiles and soft robotic systems survive the washing machine, cars and hammers.

interview by   -   December 2, 2020

In this episode, our interviewer Lauren Klein speaks with Kim Baraka about his PhD research to enable robots to engage in social interactions, including interactions with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Baraka discusses how robots can plan their actions across multiple modalities when interacting with humans, and how models from psychology can inform this process. He also tells us about his passion for dance, and how dance may serve as a testbed for embodied intelligence within Human-Robot Interaction.

Autonomous car identifying objects on the road
If robots could learn from watching demonstrations, your self-driving car could learn how to drive safely by watching you drive around your neighborhood. Photo/iStock.

By Caitlin Dawson

USC researchers have developed a method that could allow robots to learn new tasks, like setting a table or driving a car, from observing a small number of demonstrations.

On Friday the 13th of November, Talking Robotics hosted an online talk with PhD student Natalia Calvo from Uppsala University in Sweden. Now you can watch the recorded seminar.

by   -   November 23, 2020
Mechanical metamaterials
CBA researchers have created four different types of novel subunits, called voxels (a 3D variation on the pixels of a 2D image). Left to right: rigid (grey), compliant (purple), auxetic (orange), chiral (blue). Image credits: Benjamin Jenett, CBA

By David L. Chandler

Researchers at MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms have created tiny building blocks that exhibit a variety of unique mechanical properties, such as the ability to produce a twisting motion when squeezed. These subunits could potentially be assembled by tiny robots into a nearly limitless variety of objects with built-in functionality, including vehicles, large industrial parts, or specialized robots that can be repeatedly reassembled in different forms.

BiR-IROS

The 2020 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) has teamed up with Black in Robotics (website, Twitter) to release a new special series named BiR-IROS: Black in Robotics with the support of Toyota Research Institute. This series consists of three short but powerful videos of roboticists giving personal examples of why diversity matters in robotics, showcasing their research and explaining what got them into robotics.


Are you curious about the people behind the robots? The 2020 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) features a new Original Series called Real Roboticist hosted by Sabine Hauert, President of Robohub and faculty at University of Bristol.

interview by   -   November 15, 2020

 

In this episode, Shihan Lu interviews Jivko Sinapov, Assistant Professor in the Computer Science Department at Tufts University, about his work on behavior-grounded multisensory perception and exploration in robotics. Dr. Sinapov discusses several perspectives on multisensory perception in robotics, including data collection, data fusion, and robot control and planning. He also shares his experience about using robotics for K-12 education.

SoftHand Pro
SoftHand Pro. Credits: Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia

IIT’s teams will compete in the “Powered Arm Prosthesis” category showing two different robotic arm prostheses made in Italy: SoftHandPro and Hannes. The race course is about 30 metres long and will see the pilots compete in three races on 6 stations reproducing daily tasks. 60 teams from 23 countries will be involved in the event “remotely”, streamed on Cybathlon website starting from November 13th.

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Robots-as-a-Service
February 24, 2021


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