Module Leader

Professor Thrishantha Nanayakkara (0)20 7594 0965

Robotics Research Project will provide an overview of the latest research in the field of applied robotics, as well as a hands-on approach to bring critical skills together. This is done in a project-oriented course where students will design mechanical, electrical, and software subsystems of an overall functioning robot.
In this module, students will come up with a user case for a robotic solution, develop a hypothesis about the effect of a design criterion on the user experience (e.g. across gender, culture, or wellbeing), develop the robotic solution (experimental set up), test on human participants, obtain measurements, analyse data, and write a report in a conference paper format (6-8 pages).
This requires students to fuse elements of embedded programming, control, and mechanical fabrication in the design and build of highly contextualised smart technologies. They must consider the interaction between the human users and their robot systems, and demonstrate a systematic methodical approach to the conception, development, and validation of their ideas. This has the aim of proposing new methods for the development and application of robotics in new contexts across the world.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students will be better able to:

  •   Apply robotics system design methods and biological principles to the development and construction of a novel intelligent robotic system.
  •   Select and utilise appropriate software in the programming and demonstration of a robotic system
  •   Select and utilise appropriate fabrications techniques to develop and build a small robot that includes integrated electrical and mechanical components.
  •   Discuss the opportunities and limitations of current robotics technologies.
  •   Explain the potential scope of application for robotic systems             

Description of Content

Sensing methods:
  Body mounted sensors
  Marker based tracking
  Force and tactile sensing
Robotic design and fabrication methods:
  Soft robot actuators
  Servo actuators
  Tendon, pneumatic, hydraulic actuators
  Stiffness control methods
  Closed loop control
  Open loop control
  Matlab, Comsol, Python based analysis
  Statistical methods
  Dynamics and kinematics
Scientific communication:
  Paper reading
  Paper writing