People

Roger W. Brockett

An Wang Research Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Office: 345 Maxwell Dworkin
Email: brockett@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 495-3922

Robots are one example of computer-controlled machines in which motion control is a central issue. Others include surveillance vehicles, numerically controlled machine tools, autonomous loaders, repair vehicles, etc. Many recent efforts to permit these systems to react to various sensory data in real time incorporate new computational paradigms, such as neural networks and adaptive arrays. In recent work, Professor Brockett and his coworkers have shown how parallel analog algorithms can be used for these purposes and how several problems in combinatorial optimization can be understood in the context of control and dynamical systems.

Robert D. Howe

Abbott and James Lawrence Professor of Engineering

Office: 323 Pierce Hall
Email: howe@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 496-8359
Lab Name: Harvard Biorobotics Lab

The Harvard Biorobotics Lab focuses on the role of sensing and mechanical design in motor control, in both robots and humans. The research draws upon diverse disciplines, including biomechanics, systems analysis, and neurophysiology. The lab is currently exploring the development of robotic and image-guided approaches to minimally invasive surgical procedures, including projects that are improving biomechanical modeling, medical imaging, robotic surgery and rehabilitation robotics. Working with industrial partners, the lab is developing applications of this research in biomedical instrumentation, teleoperated robots, and intelligent sensors.

Scott Kuindersma

Assistant Professor of Engineering and Computer Science

Office: 151 Maxwell Dworkin
Email: scottk@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 495-9526
Lab Name: Harvard Agile Robotics Laboratory

The Harvard Agile Robotics Lab conducts basic research on optimization, control, and machine learning algorithms for controlling highly-dynamic walking, manipulating, and flying robots. Current projects include developing algorithms for robust legged locomotion and manipulation, control and estimation for morphing wing MAVs, and real-time optimization of human assistive devices


 

Jennifer Lewis

Hansjorg Wyss Professor of Biologically Inspired Engineering

Office: 221 Pierce Hall
Email: jalewis@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 496-0233

The principal activities of the Lewis Group involve 3D printing of soft functional materials for use in printed electronics, optical materials, light-weight structures, and microvascular architectures for cell culture and tissue engineering.  The Lewis Lab focuses on the directed and self-assembly of soft functional materials. By bringing together expertise in materials synthesis, complex fluids, microfluidics, robotics, biology and assembly, they are designing and patterning functional materials with controlled composition and architecture on multiple length scales. Specifically, the Lewis Group is creating novel materials that may find potential application as printed electronics, optical materials, lightweight structures, and 3D microvascular architectures for cell culture and tissue engineering. 

Radhika Nagpal

Fred Kavli Professor of Computer Science

Office: 235 Maxwell Dworkin
Email: rad@seas.harvard.edu​
Office Phone: (617) 496-6434
Lab Name: Self-Organizing Systems Research Group

The Self-Organizing Systems Research Group sheds light on the nature of coordination in large groups in order to better understand natural systems like social insect colonies and multicellular self-organization, and to engineer robust and powerful technologies like multi-robot systems for use in search and rescue, construction, or agriculture. This work lies at the intersection of computer science and biology. Her group studies bio-inspired algorithms, programming paradigms, and hardware designs for swarm/modular robotic systems and smart materials, drawing inspiration mainly from social insects and multicellular biology.

CONOR J. WALSH

Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering

Office: 328 Pierce Hall
Email: walsh@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 496-7128
Lab Name: The Harvard Biodesign Lab

The Harvard Biodesign Lab brings together researchers from the engineering, industrial design, apparel, clinical and business communities to develop robots and smart medical devices that are specifically intended for interacting and cooperating with humans. The lab focuses on applying disruptive technologies to the development of robotic devices for augmenting and restoring human performance, including a soft exosuit that can assist an individual with locomotion as part of the DARPA Warrior Web project. The lab is currently exploring new approaches to design, manufacture and control of wearable robotics.

George M. Whitesides

Office: Mallinckrodt 230
Email: gwhitesides@gmwgroup.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 495-9430
 
Prof. Whitesides is currently researching new types of soft robotic structures, focusing on the materials and methods for the fabrication of such robots. The lab is developing partially or entirely “soft” robots, fabricated in materials (predominantly elastomeric polymers) that do not use a rigid skeleton to provide mechanical strength, and are actuated pneumatically. 

ROBERT J. WOOD

Charles River Professor of Engineering and Applied Science

Office:149 Maxwell Dworkin Building
Email:rjwood@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 496-1341
Lab Name: The Harvard Microrobotics Lab

 
The Harvard Microrobotics Lab focuses on the mechanics, materials, design, and manufacturing for novel robots, including both microrobotics and soft robotics. The experimental lab explores fundamental questions in micromechanics, actuation, fluid mechanics, controls, and microelectronics. It's major projects include flying and crawling robotic insects (e.g. the "RoboBee"), squishy soft-bodied robots, and wearable robots.

 

Todd Zickler

William and Ami Kuan Danoff Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Office: 341 Maxwell Dworkin Building
Email: zickler@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone: (617) 495-4390

The Zickler lab is working to build systems that visually understand and interact with their environment, exploring computer vision using physics-based approaches that explicitly consider illumination, reflection, refraction, scattering, and imaging. The lab is currently exploring wide-angle micro sensors, spectral image models for sensing and consumer cameras as radiometric devices. The field of computer vision is evolving in response to the rapid development of cheap, high-resolution digital imaging technology, since this technology provides access to visual data of unprecedented accuracy and quantity. Broadly, Zicker and his team research how to incorporate this wealth of information into practical vision systems.