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GRASP Special Seminar: Sangbae Kim, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, “MIT Cheetah: A Legged Robot for Disaster Response”

March 20, 2015 @ 9:30 am - 10:30 am


 Realizing animals’ magnificent dynamic movements in robots is next big challenge in many future robot applications. In contrast to manufacturing as a main task for conventional robots, mobile robots’ tasks including disaster response often involve exploring unexpected areas and performing physical work in dangerous environments. The process of  ‘principle extraction’ from biology is a critical step toward the practical adoptation of nature’s design. The embodiment of such innovations includes Stickybot that employs the world’s first synthetic directional dry adhesive inspired by geckos, and the MIT Cheetah, designed after the fastest land animal. The design principles for mobile robots in structures, actuation and control algorithms applied in the MIT Cheetah will be presented during the talk. The Kim’s creations are opening new frontiers in robotics and leading to advanced mobile robots that can save lives in dangerous situations, and new all-around robotic transportation systems for the mobility-impaired.


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Prof. Sangbae Kim, is the director of the Biomimetic Robotics Laboratory and an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at MIT. His research focuses on the bio-inspired robotic platform design by extracting principles from complex biological systems. Kim’s achievements on bio-inspired robot development include the world‘s first directional adhesive inspired from gecko lizards, and a climbing robot, Stickybot, that utilizes the directional adhesives to climb smooth surfaces featured in TIME’s best inventions in 2006. The MIT Cheetah achieves stable outdoor running at an efficiency of animals, employing biomechanical principles from studies of best runners in nature. This achievement was covered by more than 200 articles. He is a recipient of King-Sun Fu Memorial Best Transactions on Robotics Paper Award (2008), DARPA YFA(2013), and NSF CAREER (2014) award.


March 20, 2015
9:30 am - 10:30 am
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