Thesis Defense: Soft, Compliant Tactile Robotic Manipulators

Speaker: Sandra Q. Liu , MIT MechE/CSAIL

Date: Friday, October 20, 2023

Time: 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM Note: all times are in the Eastern Time Zone

Public: Yes

Location: 34-401A (Grier Room A)

Event Type: Thesis Defense

Room Description:

Host: Edward Adelson, MIT BCS/CSAIL

Contact: Sandra Q Liu,

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Reminder Subject: TALK: Thesis Defense: Soft, Compliant Tactile Robotic Manipulators

Thesis Committee: Edward Adelson, Alberto Rodriguez, Kaitlyn Becker

When we look to the future of soft robotics and manipulation, we begin to look towards sensory-rich and compliant grasping mechanisms. Not only do we want to capitalize on the significant advantages in safety and adaptability that soft robots have, we also want to incorporate high-resolution tactile sensors, which will allow soft robots to perform more tasks. One such system is the GelSight sensor, which is low-cost, effective, and high-resolution. However, the integration of these camera-based sensors into compliant manipulators is difficult due to the rigidity of the sensor backing. This thesis explores the design of multiple different compliant high-resolution tactile manipulators, along with some examples of their real-world uses. The first such design incorporates a simple camera-based tactile sensor into an exoskeleton-covered soft robot with vision-based proprioception. A later design integrates full camera-based tactile sensing capabilities into a flexible Fin Ray structure. Finally, the designs culminate in a novel soft-rigid human-inspired robotic hand with continuous tactile sensing which is capable of grasping heavier objects and safely interacting with humans. The incorporation of high-resolution tactile sensors into soft, compliant robots brings us closer to developing new manipulators that could someday match or exceed the capabilities of human hands.

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Research Areas:
Graphics & Vision, Robotics

Impact Areas:

This event is not part of a series.

Created by Sandra Q Liu Email at Wednesday, October 11, 2023 at 1:03 PM.