FURI | Fall 2019

Soft Robotic Elephant Trunk

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The purpose of this research project is to study how to utilize hydrogels to create three-dimensional motion in tube-like robots. While similar structures can be found in snakes and prehensile tails, we are motivated by the possibilities of entirely soft structures such as elephant trunks and octopus arms. Our short-term goals for the first semester of this project includes fabricating and testing a scaled-down prototype consisting of a three-dimensional arrangement of hydrogel actuator units. Future work will explore more applications of the hydrogel units as well as deployment in regard to real-world applications.

Student researcher

Mannat Rana

Engineering (robotics)

Hometown: Phoenix, Arizona, United States

Graduation date: Spring 2021