Learn more about our work in lowering barriers to soft actuator design through creation of novel design tools that allow for interactive GUI-based specification of geometry and material distribution, one-click design evaluation via FEA simulation, and automated generation of design files.
We apply automated design techniques to soft robots made from rigid plastics, soft and rubbery elastomers, and water-like liquids. Internal to an automated design routine is some prediction of a candidate robot's behavior - this prediction is made using numerical simulation.
Simulating soft robots is a challenging task, made even more difficult by the geometric complexity of the robots we fabricate. We employ finite element and material point methods to efficiently simulate soft robots, which enables our automated design algorithms to efficiently explore a vast and rugged design space and discover novel soft robot designs.