MIT EECS Undergraduate Research and Innovation Scholar
Soft-Rigid Robots With Programmable Deformation Behavior
Daniela L. Rus
The motivating question for this project is whether it is possible to get the benefits of both softness and rigidity in robot design to achieve strength and flexibility. Previous work has investigated controlling the stiffness of very simple soft robots, but there has been little work on scaling these techniques up to more complex robots capable of performing real-world tasks. This project investigates the problems of hybrid robot design and control from the perspective of computer graphics, which has had recent success in using simulation and optimization to help design and control rigid robots. The goal is to develop a simulator specifically for hybrid soft-rigid robots, and investigate how it can be used to solve the challenging problems of hybrid robot design and control.
I am participating in SuperUROP because I want to gain research experience in my major while also exploring my interests in robot design and simulation. I’m excited to apply my background of programming and mathematics to this long-term research project and look forward to learning more about the research and design process.