Broad Area Colloquium For AI-Geometry-Graphics-Robotics-Vision
(CS 528)

Challenges for Effective MilliRobots

Prof. Ron Fearing
Dept. of EECS
Univ. of California, Berkeley

October 9, 2006, 4:15PM
TCSeq 200


Centimeter-scale robots will create the opportunity to manipulate, sense and explore a wide range of environments with greatly reduced cost and expanded capabilities. In many applications, the capability of millirobots depends on mobility, multiplicity, and intelligence. For macroscale intelligence, sensing, computation, and control capabilities are available off the shelf. However, at the centimeter and smaller scale, we have found in several cases that ``intelligent'' behavior, is not obtainable from algorithms, but arises from the intrinsic mechanics. The mesoscopic range between MEMS and conventional robots provides a new domain with rich challenges. There are advantages to this size scale for novel low-cost fabrication methods, including rapid prototyping of millirobots from kits of parts. This talk will provide an overview for some of the key challenges in millirobots, illustrated by examples in legged and winged millirobots.

About the Speaker

Ronald Fearing is a professor in the Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at Univ. of California, Berkeley, which he joined in Jan. 1988. His current research interests are in micro robotics, including flying micro-robots, micro-assembly, parallel nano-grasping, and rapid prototyping. He has worked in tactile sensing, teletaction, and dextrous manipulation. He has a PhD from Stanford in EE (1988) and SB and SM in EECS from MIT (1983). He received the Presidential Young Investigator Award in 1991, and is the co-inventor on 4 US patents.


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