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[robosoft 2024] - Details

[robosoft 2024] - Abstract

[robosoft 2024] - Thomas Speck

Plant-inspired soft machines and soft robots: Learning from the environmental intelligence of plants for ecosystem exploration

08:55-09:20, 20'+5' (Q&A)

Thomas Speck - University of Freiburg, Germany

Thomas Speck is Full Professor for ‘Botany: Functional Morphology and Biomimetics’ in Freiburg and Director of the Botanic Garden of the University of Freiburg. He is spokesperson of the Cluster of Excellence "Living, Adaptive, and Energy-autonomous Materials Systems (livMatS)" and of the Competence Network Biomimetics. He is Deputy Managing Director of the Freiburg Center for Interactive Materials and Bio-Inspired Technologies (FIT), and vice-chair of the Society for Technical Biology and Bionics. His main areas of research are functional morphology and biomechanics of plants, biomimetics, evolutionary biology and palaeobotany.

[robosoft 2024] - Tobias Kraus

Sensor materials for bioinspired environmental observation robots

09:20-09:45, 20'+5' (Q&A)

Tobias Kraus - Leibnitz Institute, Germany

Prof. Dr. Tobias Kraus is a chemical engineer and materials scientist trained at TU Munich, MIT, and the University of Neuchâtel. He obtained his PhD at ETH Zurich and the IBM Research Laboratory, where he worked on the assembly of particles at interfaces, particle transfer through controlled adhesion, and the creation of functional interfaces and structures with particles. Today, Tobias works at the INM – Leibniz-Institute for New Materials in Saarbrücken, Germany. He has been head of the Program Division “Structure Formation” since 2014. In 2016, he became full professor for colloid and interface chemistry at Saarland University, where he teaches and supports the strong collaboration between INM and University. In his research, Tobias curtails the interactions between particles, polymers, and small molecules. This leads to predictable, hierarchical assemblies for structured interfaces and functional materials. His group investigates hybrid materials for sensors, flexible and transparent electronics, and reversible interfaces for soft and recyclable electronic devices. Fundamental problems of nanoparticle structure, network formation, and self-assembly are investigated with a combination of small-angle X-ray scattering, light scattering, electron microscopy, and optical spectrometry. The group establishes analytical and digital models of structure formation and applies them for the creation of new materials with rationally designed morphologies.

[robosoft 2024] - Coffee break + Poster Session

[robosoft 2024] - Nick Rowe

Plants move! Diversity of movements and functional strategies in climbing plants of tropical forests

10:00-10:25, 20'+5'(Q&A)

Nick Rowe - CNRS, France

Nick Rowe is Directeur de Recherche of the CNRS at the AMAP Laboratory and University of Montpellier in Southern France. Following a degree and PhD in plant biology and evolution in Bristol, UK, he is currently interested in how plant development, biomechanics, functional biology and most recently, plant movements, can be used for bio-inspired applications in robotics. Some of the most compelling plant movements and functional strategies exist among plants that can climb and which can explore and survive in the harsh and unpredictable world of tropical rainforests. Such studies can provide innovative ideas for new approaches and applications in robotics and materials science.

[robosoft 2024] - Stefano Mintchev

Detectives in the Canopy: Using Drones to Uncover Rainforest Biodiversity

10:25-10:50, 20'+5' (Q&A)

Stefano Mintchev - ETH, Switzerland

Stefano Mintchev is Assistant Professor of Environmental Robotics at ETH Zurich. He completed his Ph.D. in biorobotics from Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Italy in 2014. During his postdoctoral activity at EPFL he contributed to the field of flying robotics by proposing novel design and manufacturing principles for morpho-functional drones that are inspired by natural flyers. In 2018, Stefano co-founded Foldaway Haptics, where he acted as CTO until April 2020, before joining ETH Zurich with a SNSF Professorial Fellowship. Today, his research focuses on advancing the science and technology of robotics to address the pressing and interconnected challenges of sustainability, climate change, and biodiversity decline.

[robosoft 2024] - Donato Romano

The Emerging Field of Animal(Organism)-Robot Interaction: Towards a Symbiotic Future at the Intersection of Biology and Robotics

10:50-11:15, 20'+5' (Q&A)

Donato Romano - Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Italy

Donato Romano [M.Sc. in Agriculture Science and Technologies (honors) 2014, PhD in BioRobotics (honors) 2018] is currently an Assistant Professor at The BioRobotics Institute of Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, where he coordinates the Bio-Robotic Ecosystems Laboratory. Romano is mainly focusing his activities on bioinspired and biomimetic robotics, and in particular on animal-robot interaction, biohybrid systems, natural and biohybrid intelligence, ethorobotics, neuroethology. Major aims of his research are biodiversity preservation, sustainable environmental management, life support in extreme scenarios. He received national and international recognition for his research. He is co-founder and R&D Director of the HUBILIFE srl (spin-off of Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna) aimed at developing and commercializing bioinspired devices to improve human daily life. He also worked as visiting scholar at Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi (UAE). Romano has published more than 75 studies on highly-ranked international journals with impact factor. His H-index is 24 (Scopus, December 2023). Romano is Member of the Editorial Board for several international scientific journals. He is Coordinator, PI, or partner of several national and international research projects.

[robosoft 2024] - Cameron Aubin

Powerful, soft micro-combustion actuators enable robots to explore at the insect-scale

11:15-11:40, 20'+5' (Q&A)

Cameron Aubin - University of Michigan, USA

Cameron Aubin is a newly minted Assistant Professor of Robotics at the University of Michigan. He previously conducted his graduate work at Cornell University under the guidance of Robert Shepherd, and received his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering in 2023. Cameron’s work centers on improving the endurance, adaptability, and autonomy of robots through the integration of multifunctional, biologically-inspired energy systems. His interests also include soft robotics, microrobotics, and advanced materials and manufacturing. He has published in a number of reputable journals, including Nature and Science, and his research has been featured by several popular media outlets, including CNN, PBS, BBC, Wired, New Scientist, ARS Technica, and more.

[robosoft 2024] - Panel Discussion

Panel discussion on "How soft machines can help us to interact with encountered unstructured ecosystems? Examples of successful stories” and concluding remarks


[robosoft 2024] - Download agenda

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