Wyatt Felt, Khai Yi Chin, Kevin Green, and Prof. C. David Remy from the Robotics and Motion Laboratory received a $5000 award for their work on Smart Braids (http://softroboticstoolkit.com/smart-braids). Smart Braids are conductive reinforcing fibers that provide a way of sensing the deformation and force output of fiber-reinforced actuators without any external transducers. They are able to do this by sensing a change in resistance and inductance which corresponds to movement of the braids. The technology, which was recently patented by the team, was selected as the best Research Contribution out of 82 submissions from over 20 countries around the world.
The 2015 Soft Robotics Competition, was held by the “soft robotics toolkit website”, which was developed as part of educational research being undertaken in the Biodesign Lab at Harvard University. The ultimate aim of the toolkit is to advance the field of soft robotics by allowing designers and researchers to build upon each other’s work. The toolkit includes detailed documentation describing a wide range of soft robotic components (such as controllers, actuators, or sensors), and enables soft robotic systems to be produced easily and affordably (http://softroboticstoolkit.com/)