Our world of conventional hard robotics is not easily miniaturized or made compatible for handling delicate systems. It cannot currently compete with our biological systems, such as out limbs, in delicate handling and compliant manipulation. Current efforts to produce soft robotics typically makes use of composite materials
What is happening now
Current efforts to produce soft robotics typically makes use of composite materials that are a combination of hard actuator, sensors, controllers, load-bearing components and finally softer surface components. However, this prevents miniaturization of a full free-form soft robot as the hard components are still essential for the system to function.
Our Vision for our Research
Our current research focuses on electronically functionalizing the response of liquid crystal materials to create soft robotic behaviour which would be compatible with the current infrastructure for robotics.
Applications of our research
Sweating artificial skin
In the video presented here, the different phases of liquid secretion are visualized for clarification. The first secretion of the chosen liquid is stimulated with UV-light. Next, the liquid collects where the electrical grid dictates. Finally the liquid is reabsorbed through the pores in the skin, when the electricity and UV-light are switched off.