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Keynote Speakers

Conor Walsh

Keynote Title: Leveraging Soft Materials in Wearable Robots

Abstract: This talk will give an overview of our work on developing disruptive soft wearable robot technologies for augmenting and restoring human performance and how we characterize their performance through biomechanical and physiological studies so as to further the scientific understanding of how humans interact with such machines. Our efforts are the result a multidisciplinary team of students and research staff with backgrounds in engineering, materials science, apparel design, industrial design, biomechanics, and physical therapy, in addition to valuable collaborations with colleagues from Harvard, Boston University, and beyond. Current application areas include, enhancing the mobility of healthy individuals, restoring the mobility of patients with gait deficits, assisting those with upper extremity weakness to perform activities of daily living and preventing injuries of workers performing physically strenuous tasks. Our long term vision is for ubiquitous soft wearable robots that can be worn all day, every day, in the community, home, sporting and workplace environments.

Biography: Conor Walsh is the Paul A. Maeder Professor of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the John A. Paulson Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He is the is the founder of the Harvard Biodesign Lab, which brings together researchers from the engineering, industrial design, apparel, biomechanics, physical therapy and business communities to develop and translate new disruptive robotic technologies for augmenting and restoring human performance. Technology from his lab is now commercially available in clinics for gait retraining through a collaboration with ReWalk Robotics and a lab spin-out, Verve, has launched a back assist product for workers performing physically strenuous tasks in industry. He is dedicated to training the next generation of biomedical engineering innovators and lab alumni have gone on to successful careers in academia, entrepreneurship, and high tech R&D positions in industry. Additionally, he co-founded the Soft Robotics Toolkit that serves as a platform the lab’s extensive STEM outreach activities. He is the winner of multiple awards including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers and the MIT Technology Review Innovator Under 35 Award.

 

Mary Frecker

Keynote Title: Adaptive Structures and Material Systems: Community, career, and Research Highlights

Abstract: The field of adaptive structures and material systems has been advancing rapidly for more than 25 years, and the ASME ASMS research community has provided a welcoming and intellectually stimulating home for so many of us as we build our research careers. This presentation will offer reflections on an academic career built with the collaboration and support of the ASMS community, in the context of key research activities along with way. Projects from early work on design of compliant mechanisms with piezoelectric actuators to subsequent efforts aimed at optimal design of self-folding origami, morphing structures, and minimally invasive surgical instruments will be presented. Current work including optimal design of Lithium-ion battery actuators and 3D printed smart devices will also be highlighted. The presentation will conclude with suggestions for future research directions to continue the positive trajectory of the ASMS field and research community.

Biography: Mary Frecker is a Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, the Leighton Riess Chair in Engineering, and the founding director of the Center for Biodevices at Pennsylvania State University. She was recently appointed Head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Penn State, and has served as Associate Department Head for Graduate Programs in Mechanical & Nuclear Engineering, as well as Director of the Bernard Gordon Learning Factory in the College of Engineering. Dr. Frecker has a B.S. from the University of Dayton, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan. Upon joining Penn State in 1997, she was awarded the Pearce Endowed Development Professorship in Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Frecker has also been awarded the GM/Freudenstein Young Investigator Award by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Mechanisms Committee (2002), the Outstanding Advising Award by the Penn State Engineering Society (2002), the Outstanding Research Award by the Penn State Engineering Society (2005), and three ASME Best Paper awards (2009 and 2015). She served as an Executive Leadership in Academic Technology & Engineering (ELATE) Fellow in 2018-2019, and completed the Changing the Future for Senior Women Faculty in STEM leadership program in 2019. Dr. Frecker is a Fellow of the ASME, is currently Chair of the ASME Mechanisms & Robotics Technical Committee, and has served as Associate Editor of the ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, Chair of the ASME Adaptive Structures and Material Systems Technical Committee, and Executive Committee member of the ASME Aerospace Division.

 

Abstract: The SMASIS 2020 Student Symposium Organizers collaborated with the Azusa High School (AHS) Academy of Engineering to carry out an all-virtual educational outreach project. AHS second year engineering academy students were asked to design origami-based packaging cushions that reduce the impact forces within shipping egg cartons, which cause the eggs to break during transportation. The students worked remotely with their teammates to come up with proposed designs and used the given material and size constraints and other evaluation metrics to make a design selection. The students then tested the designs by conducting compression and impact tests at home to mimic the laboratory tests typically conducted in packaging engineering. The presentation will showcase the origami packaging designs devised by the students and the collaborative design process adopted by one of the teams. This coming year, students from AHS will work with the SMASIS Student Symposium on a brand new project on pneumatic actuators with applications in robotics.

 

Oswaldo Cardenas

Oswaldo Cardenas
Azusa High School

Getsemani Rodriguez

Getsemani Rodriguez
Azusa High School

Elizabeth Ruiz

Elizabeth Ruiz
Azusa High School

Lisa Ing

Lisa Ing
Azusa High School

Andres Del Real

Andres Del Real
Teacher
Azusa High School

Kazuko Fuchi

Kazuko Fuchi
Symposium Organizer
University of Dayton Research Institute

Edwin Peraza Hernandez

Edwin Peraza Hernandez
Symposium Organizer
University of California, Irvine