Join us at swissnex San Francisco to learn the science and technology behind some of the world’s coolest and most advanced bio-inspired robots. Along with special guests from Stanford University, NASA, and UC Berkeley, Auke Ijspeert of the Biorobotics Laboratory from Switzerland’s EPFL shares the secrets of the Lab’s fast-running cheetah robot, a salamander bot that navigates both land and water, and modular machines designed to be the building blocks for furniture that moves and evolves. The Lab also tours its creatures throughout the Bay Area Science Festival.
Mark R. Cutkosky serves as Professor and Associate Chair of the Stanford Mechanical Engineering Dept. His research interests include robotic manipulation and tactile sensing and the design and fabrication of small, biologically inspired robots using layered manufacturing methods. He serves as a principal investigator of the Design Interface for 3D Manufacturing and Biomimetic Robotics projects at the Center for Design Research, Director of the Dextrous Manipulation Lab, and a Co-Director of the Stanford Alliance for Innovative Manufacturing. He received his PhD and MS in Mechanical Engineering from Carnegie-Mellon University, and BS in Mechanical Engineering from University of Rochester.
Ronald Fearing is a professor in the Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences (EECS) at University of California, Berkeley. His current research interests are in milli-robotics, including flying and crawling milli-robots, parallel nano-grasping (gecko adhesion), micro-assembly, and rapid prototyping. He has worked in tactile sensing, teletaction, and dextrous manipulation. He has a Ph.D. from Stanford in Electrical Engineering as well as degrees in EECS from MIT. He received the Presidential Young Investigator Award in 1991 and is the co-inventor on 12 US patents.
Auke Ijspeert is an associate professor at the EPFL (the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, Switzerland), and head of the Biorobotics Laboratory (BioRob). He has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Physics from the EPFL, and a PhD in artificial intelligence from the University of Edinburgh.
His research interests are at the intersection of robotics, computational neuroscience, nonlinear dynamical systems, and applied machine learning. He is interested in using numerical simulations and robots to get a better understanding of animal locomotion and movement control, and in using inspiration from biology to design novel types of robots and locomotion controllers.
Vytas SunSpiral is a Senior Robotics Researcher in the Intelligent Robotics Group within the Intelligent Systems Division at NASA Ames Research Center. He is currently developing smart, free-flying robots and spacecraft as well as biologically inspired approaches to robotic systems that interact safely with humans and the environment. Recently, he led development and field-testing of the Footfall Planning Software, which enables operators to plan walking sequences over complex terrain for the ATHLETE family of six-legged lunar robots. He graduated from Stanford University in 1998 and most recently took a 1.5-year break from NASA to be the CTO of Apisphere Inc, a Berkeley-based startup that built a cloud-based system for delivering location triggered services to mobile devices.