APR 21, 2019 10:30 PM PDT

Robots Created with 3D Printing

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

Advances in material sciences has allowed robots to serve as caregivers for the booming elderly population. However, their complex design are not always efficient for at-home applications.

Purdue researchers have developed a new design method that will enable anyone to quickly design and fabricate soft robots using a 3D printer. Credit: Ramses Martinez/Purdue University

"Unfortunately, the external hard structure of current caregiving robots prevents them from a safe human-robot interaction, limiting their assistance to mere social interaction and not physical interaction," said Ramses Martinez, an assistant professor in the School of Industrial Engineering and in the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering in Purdue's College of Engineering. "After all, would you leave babies or physically or cognitively impaired old people in the hands of a robot?"

Now, in a study published in Advanced Functional Materials, a novel design methodology shows promising design and fabrication of soft robots using a 3D printer

The methodology involves three steps. The first step involves a computer-aided design file with the shape of the robot. The second step involves the user painting the CAD file to show which directions the soft robot will move. Finally, a computer algorithm will convert the CAD model into a 3D architected soft machine (ASM)—which can then be printed using a conventional 3D printer.

"ASMs can perform complex motions such as gripping or crawling with ease, and this work constitutes a step forward toward the development of autonomous and lightweight soft robots," Martinez said. "The capability of ASMs to change their body configuration and gait to adapt to a wide variety of environments has the potential to not only improve caregiving but also disaster-response robotics."

Source: Science Daily

About the Author
  • Nouran earned her BS and MS in Biology at IUPUI and currently shares her love of science by teaching. She enjoys writing on various topics as well including science & medicine, global health, and conservation biology. She hopes through her writing she can make science more engaging and communicable to the general public.
You May Also Like
JAN 21, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 21, 2020
Here's Why SpaceX Blew Up a Falcon 9 Rocket in Mid-Air
SpaceX completed a substantial milestone for NASA’s Commercial Crew Program this week, an undertaking that involved one of the commercial space compa...
FEB 02, 2020
Space & Astronomy
FEB 02, 2020
NASA Officially Retires the Spitzer Space Telescope
NASA is always sending spacecraft into space to explore the universe around us; be it the close-proximity stellar neighborhood of our own solar system or o...
MAR 03, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
MAR 03, 2020
All About Fluorocarbon Use in Aircraft and Auto Engines
Fluorocarbon rubber is a popular choice for use in aircraft and auto engines. It is a material with high resistance to chemicals and extreme temperatures a...
MAR 16, 2020
Clinical & Molecular DX
MAR 16, 2020
New diagnostic tech uses AI to screen blood for over 1400 pathogens
New and reemerging microbial threats continue to challenge the public health and infectious disease response teams worldwide. An estimated 14 million peopl...
MAR 13, 2020
Technology
MAR 13, 2020
Advancing Brain-Machine Interfaces
At Stanford University, researchers have designed a device that connects the brain to silicon-based technologies. Although the brain-machine interface devi...
MAR 21, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
MAR 21, 2020
Making underwater solar cells more efficient
New research published in the journal Joule suggests that wide-band gap semiconductors are more effective in underwater solar cells than traditional n...
Loading Comments...