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Soft Robots

Seminar Leader:
Cynthia Sung


Soft robots are robots made of stretchy and compliant materials such as rubber, cloth, paper, and more. Compared to hard robots made of metal and requiring large motors, these robots can interact more safely with humans, access tight spaces, and survive extreme environments. This seminar discussed the history and technology behind soft robots, demonstrating the possibility of making them out of commonplace, household materials, and showing the state-of-the-art engineering advancements in the field. The seminar explored how soft robots can change the future of manufacturing, space exploration, and medicine. Along the way, it uncovered the underlying principles in physics (e.g., springs, energy), chemistry (e.g., reactions, thermodynamics), and engineering design that make them possible. Though the seminar targeted grades 9-12, some topics were accessible for lower grade levels as well.

Unit TitleAuthor


Makerspaces: Where Precision and Play Intersect

Katherine Steiner
Keywords: collaboration, creative, creativity, High School, lessons, makerspace, play, problem solving, robot, soft robots, visual arts

Soft Robotics: An Introduction to Design Methodology and Engineering

Jessica Duong
Keywords: design, engineering, methodology, process, robot, robotics

Exploring Soft Robotics Through the Movie Big Hero 6

Charlette Walker
Keywords: Big Hero 6, digital literacy, English Language Arts, Google suite, robotics, soft robotics, soft robots, Technology

Bio-Design Fabrication and Soft Robots

Christopher Sweeney
Keywords: Bio-Design, Bio-Fabrication, design, Digital Fabrication, Mycelium, robotics, Robots, soft robotics

Soft Robotics

Maya Bhagat
Keywords: engineering design, origami, soft robots

The Power of Innovation in Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources

Anna Herman
Keywords: agriculture history, agriculture technology, farming, farming technology, food production, food technology, innovation, iteration, urban agriculture