News

We are looking forward to hosting and celebrating ICRA 2022 in Philadelphia.

Jan 31, 2022
We are looking forward to hosting and celebrating ICRA 2022 in Philadelphia.

Congratulations to Ian Miller, Laura Jarin-Lipschitz, Xu Liu, Siddarth Mayya, Daniel Mox, Senthil Kumar, Yuezhan Tao, Dinesh Thakur, Walker Gosrich, and Lifeng Zhou, as well as lab alums Rebecca Li, Jimmy Paulos, and Ke Sun for ICRA 2022 paper acceptances.
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Congratulations to Anusha Srikanthan and Siddarth Maya for an Excellent Paper Award  at IROS 2021

Jan 30, 2022
Congratulations to Anusha Srikanthan and Siddarth Maya for an Excellent Paper Award  at IROS 2021

“Cognitive and Social Aspects of Human Multi-Robot Interaction”
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Dr. Arbaaz Khan is now an Autonomous Driving Software Engineer at Rivian.

Dec 29, 2021
Dr. Arbaaz Khan is now an Autonomous Driving Software Engineer at Rivian.

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Dr. Siddarth Mayya joins Amazon as a research scientist.

Dec 21, 2021
Dr. Siddarth Mayya joins Amazon as a research scientist.

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Open architecture for swarms of micro UAVs

Mar 31, 2021
Open architecture for swarms of micro UAVs

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University of Pennsylvania Receives $25 Million Gift to Create Data Science Building

Nov 18, 2019
University of Pennsylvania Receives $25 Million Gift to Create Data Science Building

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Rebecca Li, MAR Design’s Team Win’s 3rd Rothberg Catalyzer with Innovative Orthotic Device

Oct 22, 2019
Rebecca Li, MAR Design’s Team Win’s 3rd Rothberg Catalyzer with Innovative Orthotic Device

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Congratulations to Vijay Kumar, selected recipient of the prestigious 2020 IEEE Robotics and Automation Technical Field Award

Oct 12, 2019
Congratulations to Vijay Kumar, selected recipient of the prestigious 2020 IEEE Robotics and Automation Technical Field Award

Heartfelt congratulations to Vijay Kumar, selected recipient of the prestigious 2020 IEEE Robotics and Automation Technical Field Award for “Contributions to cooperative robotics; networked mobile manipulation systems, particularly unmanned aerial vehicles; and leadership in robotics research, policy, and education.” He will receive this award during the 2020 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) in Paris, France on 31 May-4 June 2020.
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Congratulations to Sambeeta Das (U. Delaware), Monroe Kennedy (Stanford), and David Saldana (Lehigh) as they join new labs as Assistant Professors

Jul 11, 2019
Congratulations to Sambeeta Das (U. Delaware), Monroe Kennedy (Stanford), and David Saldana (Lehigh) as they join new labs as Assistant Professors

Congratulations to Sambeeta Das (University of Delaware), Monroe Kennedy (Stanford University), and David Saldana (Lehigh University), as they prepare to start at new labs as assistant professors, this fall.
Exyn Technologies founded by Vijay Kumar, with lab alumni Jason Derenick, Juston Thomas and Denise Wong, closes at $16M Series A

Jul 11, 2019
Exyn Technologies founded by Vijay Kumar, with lab alumni Jason Derenick, Juston Thomas and Denise Wong, closes at $16M Series A

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Venture Beat Feature: Quadcopter can Inspect Damaged Nuclear Reactors without Putting Workers at Risk

Apr 17, 2019
Venture Beat Feature: Quadcopter can Inspect Damaged Nuclear Reactors without Putting Workers at Risk

Inspecting damaged nuclear plants poses a unique challenge. Radiation inside one of the Fukushima Daiichi reactors was recorded at 73 sieverts, more than 7 times the fatal dose. (Ten sieverts would kill most people exposed to it within weeks.) That’s why researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s GRASP Lab and New York University’s Tandon School of Engineering propose that robots undertake the job instead. In a paper published on the preprint server Arxiv.org, they describe an autonomous quadcopter designed to inspect the interior of hazardous sites.
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Mox, Welde, and Jarin-Lipschitz: Three Kumar Lab Students Awarded Prestigious NSF Graduate Fellowship

Apr 11, 2019
Mox, Welde, and Jarin-Lipschitz: Three Kumar Lab Students Awarded Prestigious NSF Graduate Fellowship

Dan Mox, Jake Welde, and Laura Jarin-Lipschitz have all been accepted into the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship Program for 2019. Launched in 1952, the GRFP represents the oldest continuous investment in the nation’s science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce. As one of the most competitive scholastic programs in the U.S., it recruits high potential, early-career scientists and engineers, and supports their graduate research training. The three recipients are welcomed into good company as Google c0-founder Sergey Brin and former U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu, as well as dozens of Nobel laureates and hundreds of member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, are previous recipients of the award. One additional student, Ian Miller, received honorable mention.
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Giuseppe Loianno to join NYU Tandon’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Sep 17, 2018
Giuseppe Loianno to join NYU Tandon’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Loianno, who was affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania’s General Robotics, Automation, Sensing & Perception (GRASP) Lab before coming to Tandon, is engaged in developing increasingly small and more autonomous drones — with one basic challenge being that the smaller the unit, the more difficult it is to build in features that allow for autonomy related to agile navigation, transportation, and interaction with the environment.
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Nikolay Atanasov Joins the University of California, San Diego’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Aug 20, 2018
Nikolay Atanasov Joins the University of California, San Diego’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Atanasov received his Ph.D. in electrical and systems engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 2015. His work proposed sensing models that enable the use of context and semantic information in robot localization, mapping, and navigation and developed algorithms for active information acquisition using autonomous robot teams.
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Alberto Enrique Behar Research Professorship awarded to computer scientist Jnaneshwar Das

Aug 20, 2018
Alberto Enrique Behar Research Professorship awarded to computer scientist Jnaneshwar Das

“We are excited that Jnaneshwar Das, ‘JD,’ will be joining us this summer and that he will carry on a spirit of exploration and innovative engineering in Alberto’s tradition,” says school deputy director, Ramon Arrowsmith. “JD will bring his substantial and creative experience in robotic monitoring, machine learning, autonomous systems, and unmanned vehicles to advance our exploration education and research.”
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Philly.com spotlights Vijay Kumar Lab in article, “Penn drones navigate on their own, could save people from peril”

Feb 13, 2018
Philly.com spotlights Vijay Kumar Lab in article, “Penn drones navigate on their own, could save people from peril”

Philly.com highlights Vijay Kumar lab’s research on swarming technology, featuring researchers Aaron Weinstein and Giuseppe Loianno. “Vijay’s group has been one of the world leaders in this area,” says Larry Matthies, senior research scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
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Vijay Kumar Lab featured in IEEE Spectrum’s “Drones That Smash Into Obstacles Can Be a Good and Useful Thing: The usefulness of bumbly, bouncy microdrones.”

Feb 05, 2018
Vijay Kumar Lab featured in IEEE Spectrum’s “Drones That Smash Into Obstacles Can Be a Good and Useful Thing: The usefulness of bumbly, bouncy microdrones.”

IEEE Spectrum highlights improvements on research conducted by Yash Mulgaonkar, Anurag Makineni, Luis Guerrero-Bonilla, and Vijay Kumar.
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Penn Engineering to Develop Intelligent, Adaptive and Resilient Robot Teams with $27 Million Army Research Lab Grant

Oct 11, 2017
Penn Engineering to Develop Intelligent, Adaptive and Resilient Robot Teams with $27 Million Army Research Lab Grant

The United States Army Research Laboratory has awarded the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Engineering and Applied Science a five-year, $27 million grant to develop new methods of creating autonomous, intelligent, and resilient teams of robots.
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Amanda Prorok joins Cambridge University

Jul 02, 2017
Amanda Prorok joins Cambridge University

Former lab post-doc Amanda Prorok joins Cambridge University as University Lecturer (Assistant Professor).
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Paper named Finalist for Best Multi-Robot Systems paper at ICRA 2017

Jun 10, 2017
Paper named Finalist for Best Multi-Robot Systems paper at ICRA 2017

“Formations for Resilient Robot Teams,” authored by Luis Guerrero-Bonilla, Amanda Prorok, and Vijay Kumar named Finalist for Best Multi-Robot Systems paper at the 2017 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation.
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Kostas Karydis joins UC Riverside

May 02, 2017
Kostas Karydis joins UC Riverside

Former lab post-doc Kostas Karydis joins UC Riverside as Assistant Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering.
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Giuseppe Loianno, Shaojie Shen, and Vijay Kumar to Host International Symposium in Aerial Robotics

Mar 20, 2017
Giuseppe Loianno, Shaojie Shen, and Vijay Kumar to Host International Symposium in Aerial Robotics

Giuseppe Loianno, Shaojie Shen (Kumar lab alum and professor at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology), and Vijay Kumar will host the first symposium in aerial robotics June 19-21, 2017.  The symposium will highlight advances in aerial robotics and provide opportunities to network with robotics and drone experts in academia, government, and industry.  Also included will be a day of hands-on tutorials for robotics students.
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GRASP Team Wins at International Robotics Competition

Mar 20, 2017
GRASP Team Wins at International Robotics Competition

Giuseppe Loianno, Dinesh Thakur, and Justin Thomas competed at the Mohammed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge, March 16-18, 2017 on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. Along with their teammates from Czech Technical University in Prague and University of Lincoln, they won 1st Place in Challenge 3, 2nd Place in Challenge 1, and 3rd Place in the Grand Challenge.
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Elizabeth Hunter featured in National Inventors Hall of Fame “Women in Innovation” Exhibit

Mar 10, 2017
Elizabeth Hunter featured in National Inventors Hall of Fame “Women in Innovation” Exhibit

Elizabeth Hunter is featured in The National Inventors Hall of Fame “Women in Innovation” exhibit honoring women inventors who embody “grit, hard work, know-how and persistence.” The exhibit is featured in the lobby of the United States Patent and Trademark Office in Washington, D.C.
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Penn Engineering Offers an Online MicroMasters in Robotics

Mar 01, 2017
Penn Engineering Offers an Online MicroMasters in Robotics

Beginning in April, Penn Engineering and the GRASP Laboratory will offer a new series of online courses in robotics as part of edX’s “MicroMasters” program.
“For the first time, students from around the world can take rigorous, full-length, graduate level Penn Engineering courses online,” said Kostas Daniilidis, director of Penn Engineering Online and Ruth Yalom Stone Professor. “The Robotics MicroMasters provides global access to one of the top robotics research centers in the world and provides a credential that can be used for career enrichment or advancement.”
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Monroe Kennedy and Vijay Kumar featured on Nature Knows Best TV Series

Jan 27, 2017
Monroe Kennedy and Vijay Kumar featured on Nature Knows Best TV Series

Monroe Kennedy and Vijay Kumar are featured in “Designing Drones” episode of Xploration Station’s Nature Knows Best series. The series can be viewed on Amazon.
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Vijay Kumar awarded 2017 IEEE RAS George Saridis Leadership Award in Robotics and Automation

Jan 12, 2017
Vijay Kumar awarded 2017 IEEE RAS George Saridis Leadership Award in Robotics and Automation

The IEEE Robotics & Automation Society names Vijay Kumar the recipient of the 2017 George Saridis Leadership Award in Robotics and Automation for his “leadership in building institutions and in creating national and international programs to promote robotics and automation.”  Prof. Kumar, along with the other RAS award recipients, will be honored during an award luncheon to be held at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics & Automation (ICRA 2017) on June 1 at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Singapore.
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Yash Mulgaonkar, Luis Guerrero-Bonilla, Anurag Makineni, and Vijay Kumar are featured in IEEE Spectrum’s “The Secret to Small Drone Obstacle Avoidance Is to Just Crash Into Stuff”

Oct 31, 2016
Yash Mulgaonkar, Luis Guerrero-Bonilla, Anurag Makineni, and Vijay Kumar are featured in IEEE Spectrum’s “The Secret to Small Drone Obstacle Avoidance Is to Just Crash Into Stuff”

Roboticists are putting a tremendous amount of time and effort into finding the right combination of sensors and algorithms that will keep their drones from smashing into things. It’s a very difficult problem: With a few exceptions, you’ve got small platforms that move fast and don’t have the payload capability for the kind of sensors or computers that you really need to do real-time avoidance of things like trees or power lines. And without obstacle avoidance, how will we ever have drones that can deliver new athletic socks to our doorstep in 30 minutes or less?
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Ani Hsieh and Nora Ayanian (Kumar Lab Alum) are featured in Robohub’s “25 women in robotics you need to know about – 2016.”

Oct 12, 2016
Ani Hsieh and Nora Ayanian (Kumar Lab Alum) are featured in Robohub’s “25 women in robotics you need to know about – 2016.”

In celebration of Ada Lovelace Day, we’ve compiled our fourth annual ‘25 Women in Robotics You Need to Know About‘ list. That’s 100 women who have been featured to date, with plenty more for the years to come! We’re showcasing women working in research, development, and commercialization of robotics. The role models are diverse, ranging from emeritus to early career stage. Even though the total number of women in robotics is still relatively small, we’re celebrating that women are leading the way in future developments within this field.
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Nikolay Atanasov joins UCSD as Assistant Professor

Sep 15, 2016
Nikolay Atanasov joins UCSD as Assistant Professor

Former lab post-doc Nikolay Atanasov joins UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering as Assistant Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering.
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Giuseppe Loianno and Vijay Kumar are featured in IEEE Spectrum’s “Aggressive Quadrotors Zip Through Narrow Windows Without Any Help”

Sep 13, 2016
Giuseppe Loianno and Vijay Kumar are featured in IEEE Spectrum’s “Aggressive Quadrotors Zip Through Narrow Windows Without Any Help”

Quadrotors are capable of doing some incredible stunts, like flying through narrow windows and thrown hoops. Usually, when we talk about quadrotors doing stuff like this, we have to point out that there are lots of very complicated and expensive sensors and computers positioned around the room doing all of the hard work, and the quadrotor itself is just following orders.
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Amanda Prorok, Mickey Whitzer and Monroe Kennedy are featured in Bloomberg’s “The End of Traffic: How the Smartest People in the World Are Fixing Your Commute”

Jul 31, 2016
Amanda Prorok, Mickey Whitzer and Monroe Kennedy are featured in Bloomberg’s “The End of Traffic: How the Smartest People in the World Are Fixing Your Commute”

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Congrats to Denise Wong and Ed Steager for Best Student Paper Award at MARSS 2016: Directed Micro Assembly of Passive Particles at Fluid Interfaces Using Magnetic Robots

Jul 24, 2016
Congrats to Denise Wong and Ed Steager for Best Student Paper Award at MARSS 2016: Directed Micro Assembly of Passive Particles at Fluid Interfaces Using Magnetic Robots

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Giuseppe Loianno, Davide Scaramuzza and Vijay Kumar will host a workshop on vision-based high speed autonomous navigation of UAVs at IROS 2016

Jul 21, 2016
Giuseppe Loianno, Davide Scaramuzza and Vijay Kumar will host a workshop on vision-based high speed autonomous navigation of UAVs at IROS 2016

This workshop will focus on the systems’ challenges for small-scale and high speed navigation of aerial vehicles, where the size, weight and payload constraints only allow light-weight sensors like cameras, and the operating conditions of high speeds (20 m/s) require perception, state estimation, environment reconstruction, obstacle avoidance and planning algorithms over longer ranges and shorter time scales. This workshop will focus not only on the scientific foundations, but also the algorithmic and software design challenges, which arise in the settings of small-scale, high speed navigation in three-dimensional environments. The workshop will feature, in addition to contributed and invited talks, real-time demos provided both from academia and industry actively working in this field.
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Kumar Lab Relocates to PERCH at Pennovation

Jun 09, 2016
Kumar Lab Relocates to PERCH at Pennovation

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Giuseppe Loianno receives ICRA CEB award for Best Reviewer

May 24, 2016
Giuseppe Loianno receives ICRA CEB award for Best Reviewer

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Best Paper Finalist at ICRA 2016: Control of Microstructures Propelled via Bacterial Baths (Elizabeth Hunter, Nathaniel Chodosh, Edward Steager and Vijay Kumar)

May 24, 2016
Best Paper Finalist at ICRA 2016: Control of Microstructures Propelled via Bacterial Baths (Elizabeth Hunter, Nathaniel Chodosh, Edward Steager and Vijay Kumar)

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Giuseppe Loianno and Vijay Kumar organize a tutorial on aerial robotics at ICRA 2016

May 11, 2016
Giuseppe Loianno and Vijay Kumar organize a tutorial on aerial robotics at ICRA 2016

This tutorial provides an introduction to the theory and practice of aerial robots, with a mix of fundamentals and application. It will expose participants to the state of the art in robot design, mechanics, control, estimation, perception and planning.
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Yash Mulgaonkar, Luis Guerrero and Anurag Makineni’s Picobug featured in IEEE Spectrum

Mar 30, 2016
Yash Mulgaonkar, Luis Guerrero and Anurag Makineni’s Picobug featured in IEEE Spectrum

Tiny Little Multi-Modal Picobug Walks, Flies, Grabs Stuff
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Yash Mulgaonkar and Spencer Penn featured in Forbes’ “30 Under 30: Science and Social Entrepreneurs” list

Jan 04, 2016
Yash Mulgaonkar and Spencer Penn featured in Forbes’ “30 Under 30: Science and Social Entrepreneurs” list

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Amanda Prorok, Ani Hsieh and Vijay Kumar awarded Best Paper at BICT 2015

Nov 13, 2015
Amanda Prorok, Ani Hsieh and Vijay Kumar awarded Best Paper at BICT 2015

We present a method that distributes a swarm of heterogeneous robots among a set of tasks that require specialized capabilities in order to be completed. We model the system of heterogeneous robots as a community of species, where each species (robot type) is defined by the traits (capabilities) that it owns.
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Ed Steager and Denise Wong lead research at the intersection of synthetic biology and micro robotics

Nov 13, 2015
Ed Steager and Denise Wong lead research at the intersection of synthetic biology and micro robotics

The University of Pennsylvania is participating in two National Science Foundation projects designed to advance cyber­physical systems with medical applications. Cyber­physical systems are built from and depend upon the seamless integration of computation and physical components. One project will combine teams of microrobots with synthetic cells to perform functions that may one day lead to tissue and organ regeneration. The other project will develop a “Cyberheart,” a virtual, patient­specific human heart model that can be used to improve and accelerate medical-device testing. NSF will support the projects with two five-year awards totaling $8.75 million. View Video  
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Penn’s GRASP Lab Receives $5.5 Million for ‘Fast, Light and Autonomous’ Flying Robots

Nov 05, 2015
Penn’s GRASP Lab Receives $5.5 Million for ‘Fast, Light and Autonomous’ Flying Robots

The University of Pennsylvania’s GRASP Laboratory has received a three-year, $5.5 million grant from the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency to create new flying robots that are able to quickly and autonomously navigate unknown environments. These abilities would be invaluable in disaster situations where conditions are too dangerous for humans to inspect damage or search for trapped or injured people.
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Amanda Prorok and Philip Dames participated in a demo shown at the DARPA Wait, What? forum in St. Louis, MO.

Oct 30, 2015
Amanda Prorok and Philip Dames participated in a demo shown at the DARPA Wait, What? forum in St. Louis, MO.

“We’re here to change what’s possible,” said DARPA Director Arati Prabhakar, introducing the conference to assembled scientists, engineers and students.


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Elizabeth Beattie featured in Huffington Post article on “Girls in Stem and the Collegiate Inventor Competition”

Oct 29, 2015
Elizabeth Beattie featured in Huffington Post article on “Girls in Stem and the Collegiate Inventor Competition”

Just three years ago, Elizabeth (Beattie) Hunter was an undergrad engineering student at the University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering and Applied Science and finalist in the Collegiate Inventors Competition. Elizabeth and her colleagues had submitted their capstone project, the Titan Arm. Their project was an exoskeleton that provides the wearer with an extra forty pounds of bicep strength.
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Elizabeth Beattie featured in Forbes’ “Three Inventors Proving The Art Of Making Physical Things Isn’t Dead Yet”

Oct 28, 2015
Elizabeth Beattie featured in Forbes’ “Three Inventors Proving The Art Of Making Physical Things Isn’t Dead Yet”

At this year’s Forbes Under 30 Summit in Philadelphia, three young inventors showed off their clever, wish-you’d-thought-of-it-first devices.
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Amanda Prorok selected as MIT 2015 Rising Star

Oct 23, 2015
Amanda Prorok selected as MIT 2015 Rising Star

As we harness swarms of autonomous robots to solve increasingly challenging tasks, we must find ways of distributing robot capabilities among distinct swarm members.
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Penn’s new engineering dean is off to a flying start

Aug 25, 2015
Penn’s new engineering dean is off to a flying start

Before he became dean of the University of Pennsylvania’s engineering school this summer, Vijay Kumar did more than teach, research, and publish in journals: He brought the small, quick, responsive flying robots his lab developed to an influential public, posting videos on websites.
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Elizabeth Beattie is featured in Forbes’ “Inventors: Breaking New Ground With The Forbes 30 Under 30″

Aug 23, 2015
Elizabeth Beattie is featured in Forbes’ “Inventors: Breaking New Ground With The Forbes 30 Under 30″

Roboticist hunter first designed the titan arm, which amps the wearer’s biceps strength by 40 pounds, and is now working on microrobots half the width of a human hair.
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Justin Thomas featured in IEEE article “Robotics Engineers Get Back to Nature”

May 12, 2015
Justin Thomas featured in IEEE article “Robotics Engineers Get Back to Nature”

Fish, hawks, and microorganisms are inspiring a new generation of robots
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Justin Thomas and Yash Mulgaonkar appear on CBS Philly

May 08, 2015
Justin Thomas and Yash Mulgaonkar appear on CBS Philly

It’s Science Week on Talk Philly in conjunction with the Philadelphia Science Festival. Here to tell us more is Frederic Bertley, senior Vice President of Science and Education at the Franklin Institute and Justin Thomas and Yash Mulgaonkar from the University of Pennsylvania who will demonstrate today’s topic: robotics!
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Vijay Kumar and Yash Mulgaonkar featured on Discovery Canada Daily Planet

Apr 15, 2015
Vijay Kumar and Yash Mulgaonkar featured on Discovery Canada Daily Planet

Pico Quadrotors on The Daily Planet, Discovery Channel Canada
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Vijay Kumar discusses the future of flying robots at TEDxPenn.

Apr 12, 2015
Vijay Kumar discusses the future of flying robots at TEDxPenn.

What if there was a way for first responders to survey the scene inside a collapsed building without physically entering it first? What if there existed a technology that allowed farmers to increase their yield by optimizing each individual plant? A pioneer of multi-robot formation auto-control and coordination, Vijay Kumar shows us how his cutting-edge drone technology can better the world in the very near future.
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Giuseppe Loiannoa and Yash Mulgaonkar featured on IEEE Spectrum

Apr 09, 2015
Giuseppe Loiannoa and Yash Mulgaonkar featured on IEEE Spectrum

UPENN’s new quadcopter uses a smartphone for autonomous flight, employing only on-board hardware and vision algorithms—no GPS involved. The drone was built as a collaborative project between Qualcomm and a team of University of Pennsylvania researchers led by Vijay Kumar.
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Elizabeth Beattie and Denise Wong featured in NPR’s Science Friday

Mar 02, 2015
Elizabeth Beattie and Denise Wong featured in NPR’s Science Friday

NPR’s “Science Friday” visited SEAS grad students Elizabeth Beattie and Denise Wong to profile their work in developing robots powered by microorganisms (Courtesy Penn News Today).
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KMel’s acquisition by Qualcomm featured in Xconomy

Feb 25, 2015
KMel’s acquisition by Qualcomm featured in Xconomy

In a small-but-significant addition to its budding interest in robotics, San Diego-based Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) has acquired KMel Robotics, a Philadelphia, PA-based startup that specializes in multi-rotor drones capable of coordinated, high-performance operations.


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KMel Robotics, was just acquired by Qualcomm!

Feb 06, 2015
KMel Robotics, was just acquired by Qualcomm!

Congrats to GRASP Lab Alumni, Daniel Mellinger and Alex Kushleyev, whose company, KMel Robotics, was just acquired by Qualcomm!
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Vijay Kumar featured on PBS NewsHour

Feb 06, 2015
Vijay Kumar featured on PBS NewsHour

While the drone industry zooms, regulation lags.
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Elizabeth Beattie is featured in Forbes’ “30 Under 30:Science” list

Jan 06, 2015
Elizabeth Beattie is featured in Forbes’ “30 Under 30:Science” list

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Vijay Kumar and GRASP Lab researchers Monroe Kennedy, Justin Thomas and Yash Mulgaonkar were featured in the first episode of the series Xploration Earth 2050: Bio – Mechanimals

Nov 03, 2014
Vijay Kumar and GRASP Lab researchers Monroe Kennedy, Justin Thomas and Yash Mulgaonkar were featured in the first episode of the series Xploration Earth 2050: Bio – Mechanimals

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Jun Seo and Matt Turpin  are winners of the ICRA 2014 Best Automation Paper Award

Jun 06, 2014
Jun Seo and Matt Turpin are winners of the ICRA 2014 Best Automation Paper Award

Jun Seo and Matt Turpin are winners of the ICRA 2014 Best Automation Paper Award with members of the Modlab for their paper “Self-Assembly of a Swarm of Autonomous Boats into Floating Structures.”
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Vijay Kumar wins 2014 Engelberger Award

Jun 06, 2014
Vijay Kumar wins 2014 Engelberger Award

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Kodlab robot technology wins the second Y-Prize Competition, organized by the Kumar lab with the Mack Institute.

Apr 24, 2014
Kodlab robot technology wins the second Y-Prize Competition, organized by the Kumar lab with the Mack Institute.

At the Finale on Monday, April 20th, student teams pitched groundbreaking ideas that utilize GRASP Lab technology. The pitches included agriculture robots that save crops from freezing, flying quadrotors that revolutionize the film and spots industry and a walking robot that teaches students about STEM. The Y-Prize competition, co-founded by Vijay Kumar, challenges students to develop novel applications for GRASP Lab robotics technology. More information about the competition and the winning team is available on the Y-Prize website: www.yprize.upenn.edu.
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Kumar discusses the use of aerial robots with PA Representative Metcalf

Apr 01, 2014
Kumar discusses the use of aerial robots with PA Representative Metcalf

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The 2014 FIRST LEGO League Championship held at the University of Pennsylvania was organized and supported by numerous members of the Kumar Lab.

Feb 12, 2014
The 2014 FIRST LEGO League Championship held at the University of Pennsylvania was organized and supported by numerous members of the Kumar Lab.

Kumar Lab members…Ben Charrow, Philip Dames, Rebecca Hayward, Jim Keller, Monroe Kennedy, Yash Mulgaonkar, Sarah Tang, Mike Watterson and Mickey Whitzer…served as key volunteers and judges at the 2014 Southeastern Pennsylvania FIRST LEGO League Championship that was held at the University of Pennsylvania on Saturday, February 1st. This event was comprised of over 40 middle school robotics teams, totaling about 400 children, from the greater Philadelphia area that participated in the day long event.
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Vijay Kumar on WHYY Radio Times: Robotic roundup

Jan 16, 2014
Vijay Kumar on WHYY Radio Times: Robotic roundup

Guests: Daniel Lee, Katherine Kuchenbecker, Vijay Kumar Robots can run, walk, climb, drive and fly.  They work in factories, in farm fields, in surgical operating rooms, and in our living rooms vacuuming the floors.  They patrol drug tunnels along the border, battle wildfires from the air, and fight enemy combatants abroad. Robots have been advancing quickly — so today we check on just how far they’ve come and what the future might look like.  Marty sits down with three leading roboticists from the University of Pennsylvania:  DANIEL LEE, a Professor of Electrical and Systems Engineering and Director of the GRASP Lab, KATHERINE KUCHENBECKER, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, and VIJAY KUMAR, UPS Foundation Professor in the School of Engineering and Applied Science and assistant director of robotics and cyber physical systems at the White house Office of Science and Technology Policy.
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Mihail Pivtaraiko, Dinesh Thakur, and Mike Watterson part of the winning TROOPER team qualify in the DARPA Robotics Challenge

Dec 22, 2013
Mihail Pivtaraiko, Dinesh Thakur, and Mike Watterson part of the winning TROOPER team qualify in the DARPA Robotics Challenge

Sixteen teams from around the world came together at Florida’s Homestead Miami Speedway, December 20-21, 2013 to participate in DARPA’s Robotics Challenge Trials. The Trials provide an important baseline on the current state of robotics today and their potential for future use in disaster response.
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Get a glimpse into the snaking, hovering and pedaling of robots past (video)

Dec 13, 2013
Get a glimpse into the snaking, hovering and pedaling of robots past (video)

The director of that awesome James Bond quadrotor video from last year has unearthered some fascinating footage from University of Pennsylvania professors, detailing robotic breakthroughs that lead to the creation of the acrobatic RHex, self-assembling modular CKbot and the aforementioned flying marvel. According to the director, the short video was compiled using largely unseen footage that dates back to the early 80s. Well worth four and half minutes of your time.
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Elizabeth Beattie’s team wins the Dyson Award: Titan Arm: Bionic bicep …

Oct 25, 2013
Elizabeth Beattie’s team wins the Dyson Award: Titan Arm: Bionic bicep …

(CNN) — In the past, if you wanted to be able to be able to lift more weight you would have to spend months bulking up at the gym. Now, with a new invention from a group of engineering students at the University of Pennsylvania, you can just strap on an external bicep and you are ready to go.
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BTA Panel: The Rise of Autonomous Vehicles

Oct 22, 2013
BTA Panel: The Rise of Autonomous Vehicles

The autonomous car (and plane, and swarm of flying robots) is coming. That much is clear. But what might be less clear to onlookers watching the rise of the unmanned vehicle is that there are very different types of autonomy in machines, according to three PopMech Breakthrough Award winners. This afternoon at PM’s home in the Hearst Tower, our Senior News Editor Joe Pappalardo sat down with Joseph Chody, chief engineer for the X-47B unmanned combat air system; John Capp, director of global active safety electronics and innovation at General Motors; and Vijay Kumar, a University of Pennsylvania mechanical engineer who designs fleets of autonomous quadrotors that work together…
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Daniel Mellinger, Alex Kushleyev, Nathan Michael, Shaojie Frank Shen, Matt Turpin and Vijay Kumar win 2013 Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Award

Oct 22, 2013
Daniel Mellinger, Alex Kushleyev, Nathan Michael, Shaojie Frank Shen, Matt Turpin and Vijay Kumar win 2013 Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Award

Swarm Micro-UAVs: Vijay Kumar, Shaojie Shen, Matthew Turpin (University of Pennsylvania); Nathan Michael (Carnegie Mellon University); Daniel Mellinger and Alex Kushleyev (KMel Robotics)
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10 Innovators Who Changed the World in 2013

Oct 22, 2013
10 Innovators Who Changed the World in 2013

These brilliant engineers, designers, and dreamers captured our imagination by creating swarms of smart rescue robots, cars that drive themselves, and a rugged rover that could change the way we think about exploring the Red Planet. They are PopMech’s 2013 Breakthrough Award winners. (See also the 10 Breakthrough Products of 2013.)
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GRASP Faculty on the South by Southwest Interactive 2014 Panels…Katherine Kuchenbecker and Vijay Kumar

Oct 15, 2013
GRASP Faculty on the South by Southwest Interactive 2014 Panels…Katherine Kuchenbecker and Vijay Kumar

An Abundance of Creativity: 500+ Confirmed Sessions for the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival Today, we announce the bulk of confirmed sessions for the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival. Almost all of these sessions come from proposals submitted by the online community via the SXSW PanelPicker. The selection process for these proposals mixes voting from the general online public, plus Advisory Board input as well as SXSW staff input.
The breadth and width of these 500+ sessions reflects the marketplace of amazing ideas that comes together in Austin each March. Specific trends and themes that will be particularly important for the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival include “Privacy and Security,” “Global Impact and Policy,” “Design and Development,” “Art, Science and Inspiration” and “Intelligent Future.” As in previous years, we continue to see lots of very strong interest in Startup Village programming so look for even more international participation in this space in March 2014…Read More…
Dr. Katherine Kuchenbecker will be a panelist on “When AR Meets the OR: Robotics & Augmented Reality in Surgery” under Health and Business. Dr. Vijay Kumar will be a panelist on “Welcoming the Robot Workforce” under Intelligent Future.
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Penn Engineering’s GRASP Lab, Wharton’s Mack Institute Take Y-Prize Global

Sep 30, 2013
Penn Engineering’s GRASP Lab, Wharton’s Mack Institute Take Y-Prize Global

Last year, the GRASP lab at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Engineering and Applied Science and the Wharton School’s Mack Institute helped take cutting-edge robots out of the lab and into the marketplace through the Y-Prize Competition. Now, they have now joined forces with crowdsourcing platform Marblar and intellectual property commercialization company IP Group to take the Y-Prize worldwide.
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Nora Ayanian joins USC as an assistant professor.

Sep 01, 2013
Nora Ayanian joins USC as an assistant professor.

Nora Ayanian joins USC as an assistant professor.
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We The Geeks: “Robots” On The Whitehouse.gov

Aug 09, 2013
We The Geeks: “Robots” On The Whitehouse.gov

Join us on Friday, August 9th, at 2:00 pm EDT for a “We the Geeks” Google+ Hangout on “Robots” – where pioneering scientists will discuss how robots can help transform everything from school classrooms to the factory floor and operating rooms to the way we explore the Solar System. You’ll meet American inventors giving robots incredible new capabilities in manufacturing and medicine. You’ll also hear how the Obama Administration’s National Robotics Initiative is accelerating innovations that will expand the horizons of human capacity and potentially add over $100 billion to the American economy in the next decade.
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Koushil Sreenath joins CMU as an assistant professor.

Aug 01, 2013
Koushil Sreenath joins CMU as an assistant professor.

Koushil Sreenath joins CMU as an assistant professor.
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IDSA International Conference Preview: Dr. Vijay Kumar on Tiny Flying Robots and Whether or Not They’re Taking Over the World – Core77

Aug 01, 2013
IDSA International Conference Preview: Dr. Vijay Kumar on Tiny Flying Robots and Whether or Not They’re Taking Over the World – Core77

The IDSA International Conference is just under three weeks away, and if you have yet to make plans to be in Chicago from August 21–24, we strongly suggest you do so ASAP. As always, the lineup of speakers is pretty stacked, and while we’ve crossed paths with many of this year’s speakers over the years, the IDSA keeps it fresh with the likes of, say, Paralympian Blake Leeper. Similarly, we were interesed to see Dr. Vijay Kumar‘s name among the presenters. I’d been curious about his work ever since the first video on “A Swarm of Nano Quadrotors” hit the web over a year and a half ago
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Koushil Sreenath and Vijay Kumar win the RSS best paper award

Jun 26, 2013
Koushil Sreenath and Vijay Kumar win the RSS best paper award

The 2013 Robotics: Science and Systems Conference will bring together researchers working on algorithmic or mathematical foundations of robotics, robotics applications, and analysis of robotic systems. High quality, original papers are solicited in all areas of robotics. The final program will be the result of a thorough review process designed to include the best work of its kind in every category. The conference will be single track to allow attendees an opportunity to experience the best research in all areas of robotics. The program will include invited talks as well as oral and poster presentations of refereed papers.
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Drones in science: Fly, and bring me data

Jun 12, 2013
Drones in science: Fly, and bring me data

Teams working on UAVs tend to keep abreast of each other’s work through videos posted online. The field’s biggest YouTube ‘star’ is Vijay Kumar at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Kumar’s group controls quadrotor helicopters indoors with a modified Vicon system — the motion-capture system used in Hollywood and by the video-game industry. His videos show drones flying in tight formation, transporting two-by-fours, and even — in one video with more than 3 million views — performing the James Bond theme on multiple instruments. “The Internet has changed the rules,” says Shim. And, Siegwart says, “It also spreads the information a little further, which helps attract good students.”
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Tiny flying robots! Meet the quadrotor

May 01, 2013
Tiny flying robots! Meet the quadrotor

(CNN) — It’s a mesmerizing, surreal scene. Eight tiny, unmanned aerial vehicles — called quadrotors — begin to rise from the ground in unison. They hover at eye level, filling the room with a heavy buzzing sound. Then they move through a makeshift window, one at a time, and reform as a group on the other side.
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Cheap drones could save your life

Apr 10, 2013
Cheap drones could save your life

Cheap and off-the-shelf technology make up the key ingredients in some of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), or drones, under development at the University of Pennsylvania’s General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception Lab. Researchers at the “GRASP” lab are trying to develop inexpensive drone technology that could rescue people from life-threatening situations.
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Elizabeth Beattie, Monroe Kennedy, and Mickey Whitzer win NSF fellowships.

Mar 29, 2013
Elizabeth Beattie, Monroe Kennedy, and Mickey Whitzer win NSF fellowships.

Elizabeth Beattie, Monroe Kennedy, and Mickey Whitzer win NSF fellowships.
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Nova Making Stuff Happen (Video)

Jan 14, 2013
Nova Making Stuff Happen (Video)

Making Stuff Wilder – premieres 7.50pm, Tuesday 14 January on PBS America (Sky 243 & Virgin Media 243)
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Nova Rise of the Drones

Oct 24, 2012
Nova Rise of the Drones

Drones. These unmanned flying robots–some as large as jumbo jets, others as small as birds–do things straight out of science fiction. Much of what it takes to get these robotic airplanes to fly, sense, and kill has remained secret. But now, with rare access to drone engineers and those who fly them for the U.S. military, NOVA reveals the amazing technologies that make drones so powerful as we see how a remotely-piloted drone strike looks and feels from inside the command center. From cameras that can capture every detail of an entire city at a glance to swarming robots that can make decisions on their own to giant air frames that can stay aloft for days on end, drones are changing our relationship to war, surveillance, and each other. And it’s just the beginning. Discover the cutting edge technologies that are propelling us toward a new chapter in aviation history as NOVA gets ready for “Rise of the Drones.”
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Smartest People in Philadelphia

Oct 24, 2012
Smartest People in Philadelphia

Just when you thought Apple had cornered the market on cool gadgets, along comes Kumar, the 50-year-old Penn prof who has invented tiny (as small as eight inches!) robots that can outmaneuver human-controlled drones, and even create 3-D maps of what they survey.
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Inside The Swarming Quadrotor Lab Of KMel Robotics

Oct 11, 2012
Inside The Swarming Quadrotor Lab Of KMel Robotics

Every summer, the most creative minds in advertising and communications gather in the French resort town of Cannes, on the Cote d’Azur, to celebrate their own brilliance at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. These are the forward-thinkers, the industry’s most prominent problem-solvers, the crisply styled “creative types” who spotted the next big thing was before it was the next big thing, and then made it so.
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Here’s Looking At You

May 14, 2012
Here’s Looking At You

THE WORLD OF SURVEILLANCE about drones. The prospect of unmanned flight has been around—depending on your definition—since Archytas of Tarentum reputedly designed a steam-powered mechanical pigeon, in the fourth century B.C., or since Nikola Tesla, in 1898, demonstrated a radio-controlled motorboat at an exposition in Madison Square Garden. By the sixties the Air Force was deploying unmanned reconnaissance jets over Southeast Asia.
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Printable Robots: MIT Project Wants to Let You Design and Fabricate Your Own Machines

Apr 03, 2012
Printable Robots: MIT Project Wants to Let You Design and Fabricate Your Own Machines

Who knew that origami could be the future of robotics? Today, if you want to design and build your own robot, you have to order components, write software, and then assemble and test your creation. Of course, the more sophisticated your robot gets, the more time and money you have to spend on it.
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No, Mr. Bond. I Expect You to Fly…

Mar 09, 2012
No, Mr. Bond. I Expect You to Fly…

The University of Pennsylvania’s Vijay Kumar brought down the house at this year’s TED conference when he showed a video of his lab’s flying robots performing the James Bond theme. But that’s just a fraction of what they can do.
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Invasion of the flying robots

Mar 04, 2012
Invasion of the flying robots

Long Beach, California (CNN) — It was after the robotic hummingbird flew around the auditorium — and after a speaker talked about the hypersonic plane that could fly from New York to the West Coast in 11 minutes — that things got really edgy.
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MRSL (GRASP Lab) showcased on the Discovery Channel

Oct 20, 2011
MRSL (GRASP Lab) showcased on the Discovery Channel

MRSL (GRASP Lab) showcased on the Discovery Channel
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Discovery Channel

Feb 24, 2011
Discovery Channel

Discovery Channel – Daily Planet – February 24, 2011
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Flying Robot Drones

Jan 25, 2011
Flying Robot Drones

Flying robots build dorm room shelves – The Colbert Report (watch 3 mins out)
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