Robotics and Motion Control

Machine assistance to improve our quality of life

Vision-guided robotics, autonomous robots, artificial muscles, creative movements—machine-guided solutions and robotic assistance can help us communicate better, tackle labor-intensive and dangerous tasks, conduct surgery and visit harsh environments. 

Whether we’re looking to access a sewer pipe, disarm a bomb or even assist in the caring of our aging population, robots can drastically improve our quality of life. Motion-control innovations like harmonic dampening on buildings to reduce the impact of earthquakes and power electronics to control the loading conditions on wind turbines keep us safer and our infrastructure stronger. From vibration analysis to friction-and-wear optimization to robotic assistance, we’re pushing forward the capabilities of machines to better serve our society. 

Institutes, centers and labs related to Robotics and Motion Control

Rethink Robotics Baxter robot

Integrated Robotics Center

Using a cross-discipline approach to bring creativity, knowledge and expertise to the creation of robotic systems, with a specific focus on exploration, intelligence, movement, manufacturing and health care

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Center for Control and Energy Systems

Develops advanced control engineering solutions for renewable energy, wind turbines, power systems, water treatment plants, radio telescopes, spacecraft and industrial applications.

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Galan Lab

Investigates systems biology and neuroscience, including the link between heart and brain in epilepsy, and the development of biomarkers for autism from brain activity.

mechanical engineering students working on a cockroach robot

Medical Robotics and Computer Integrated Surgery Group

Develops medical applications of robotics and other information technologies, specifically robotic systems for surgery and interventional medicine, human-machine interfaces, haptics, virtual reality surgical simulators and modeling and simulation of complex biological systems.

Faculty who conduct research in Robotics and Motion Control

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M. Cenk Cavusoglu

Associate Department Chair, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Director, Medical Robotics and Computer Integrated Surgery Laboratory

Develops next-generation medical robotic systems for surgery and image-guided interventions

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Kathryn Daltorio

Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Co-Director, Biologically-Inspired Robotics Lab

Develops robots that can traverse and operate in new environments, inspired by biological models of smart physical systems

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Roberto Fernandez Galan

Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Investigates systems biology and neuroscience, including the heart-brain link in epilepsy and brain-activity-based biomarkers for autism

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Robert Gao

Department Chair, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Cady Staley Professor of Engineering
Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Develops multi-physics sensing and stochastic modeling methods for improving observability in dynamical systems

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Mario Garcia-Sanz

Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Bridges the gap between advanced control theory and energy, industrial and space applications

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Greg Lee

Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Develops robotic systems

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Kiju Lee

Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Director, Distributed Intelligence and Robotics Lab

Investigates novel robotic mechanisms and human-centered technology designs for applications in health care, education and manufacturing

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Michael Lewicki

Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Develops theoretical models of computation and representation in sensory coding and perception

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Wei Lin

Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Creates modeling, estimations and advanced control techniques for smart grid and power systems

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Wyatt Newman

Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Designs intelligent robots, machines and software for diverse applications

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Roger Quinn

Arthur P. Armington Professor of Engineering
Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Director, Biologically Inspired Robotics

Develops neural and mechanical models of animals and uses data to design and control robots and exoskeletons