Surgical robotics

In our two Robotic Surgery labs, new robotic instruments and methodologies are studied. Multi-disciplinary teams of engineers, clinicians, and industrial collaborators focus on the developing of innovative solutions for a broad range of clinically-relevant challenges such as mri-guided breast biopsy procedures with a robotic needle manipulator, CT- and ultrasound guided robotics and needle steering, and modelling needle-tissue interactions. Project examples:

Wearable robotics and rehabilitation

Our goal is to improve the quality of life of humans with a movement disorder. In our wearable robotics lab, we develop new interventions and diagnostic techniques based on fundamental insight in (impaired) human motor control. This is accomplished through the combination of computational modelling of the neuromechanical system and experiments using techniques from system and control engineering, such as closed-loop system identification. The application area is in therapeutic & diagnostic robotics and assistive technologies. These foci cross many diagnostic categories, including stroke, cerebral palsy, and Parkinson’s disease. Examples of assistive technologies include exoskeletons that would enable over-ground mobility in the face of paralysis or other disorders. Project examples:

Robotics for inspection and maintenance

The development and use of robotics technologies are investigated for tasks in which inspection of not easily reachable structures or dangerous environments is necessary. This can be the case for underground gas mains, high structures or plains, continuous monitoring of the dykes, or even modelling for inspection of space rovers in collaboration with ESA. In addition to our in-house lab facilities, Space53 is our location for the safe development, testing and training of unmanned systems on land, in the air and/or water. Project examples:

Social robotics

We strive to make robots behave as socially appropriate as possible in a given situation. The basis for modelling such behaviour is the in-depth analysis of human-human and human-robot interaction from a social science point of view, taking the user, the system, and the situation into account. Our work results in autonomous robots that are social and that can assist humans in their life, with applications ranging from helping the elderly in their homes to engaging visitors in outdoor touristic sites. Project examples: