This week Oxford Robotics were visited by Stratasys, the 3D printing experts, to install their state-of-the-art J735 printer - an essential research tool for the Soft Robotics Lab. It's "the best polyjet multi material 3D printer on the market", according to Perla Maiolino, head of the Soft Robotics Lab: "This printer can print a wider range of materials and colours with horizontal build layers down to 14 microns. The ability to mix materials together allows us to get desired mechanical properties and colours for any object." Stratasys brought a couple of example pieces with them to demonstrate the potential for life-like colour, variable stiffness parts, and internal channels. The results were certainly impressive! The new multi-material 3D printer is an important piece of research equipment for the Soft Robotics Lab, allowing soft robots to be designed and manufactured with [...]
Oxford Robotics Institute past and present at ICRA 2019 in Montreal! Back Row: Ioannis Havoutis, Matt Gadd, Roberto Aldera, Chris Prahacs, Horia Porav, Paul Newman, Ingmar Posner, Rob Weston, Adrián Peñate Sánchez, Tim Tang Front Row: Marco Camurri, Perla Maiolino, Maurice Fallon, Sarah Cen, Alex Bewley, Will Maddern ORI are regular attendees at ICRA, having sent members as far back as the Millennium Conference in 2000. We love this opportunity to not only engage with the latest research but also to reconnect with our friends in the robotics community. While the editorial board is always innovating the format of the conference, the quality of the proceedings proved no exception to the norm. A battery of fluid poster sessions allowed our researchers to wander through a charged environment and engage in ad hoc style with papers on a range [...]
The ORI Running Group On Sunday the 11th of May, ORI's finest athletes embarked on the Oxford Town and Gown 10 Kilometre race. This motley bunch consisted of Bruno, Oiwi, Simon V and Stephen K. It was a fine May morning and it appeared that the masses would be out for the spectacle and sunshine. So as to give the crowds (and ourselves) something to enjoy, we decided we would each try and achieve a personal best time. Bruno and Stephen set their goal at below 55 minutes while I myself (ever the optimist) decided to try and get below 45 minutes. Knowing what times we wanted to achieve and a few choice words of wisdom from me, we each lined up in the relevant starting area. Before we knew it the starting gun sounded and we were off! The first part [...]
Oliver Groth, a 2nd year PhD student at ORI, was invited to give a talk in Berlin at @KIT19, an annual German conference about legal aspects of IT development. This year’s issue was hosted by Google and focused on the ramifications of self-learning and autonomous systems once they are released into the public space. Oliver presented an overview of state-of-the-art applications of deep learning like real-time object detectors, chatbots or GANs to raise awareness about the capabilities and weaknesses of current deep learning technology and allude to related societal and legal issues like dataset bias, bot accountability and authenticity of digital content.
Over the past few months, one of our 2nd year DPhil students, Mark Finean, has been volunteering as a robotics mentor to a group of girls pursuing their A levels at St Paul’s Girls’ School (SPGS) in London. For a school project, they wished to learn more about robots and investigate how they could be used in schools as well as the ways that students could interact with and use them to learn. To help learn more about the current state of modern robotics and gain some hands-on-experience, they spent a day in the ORI where they were introduced to some of the research we conduct as well as tried their hands at programming the Toyota HSR. They were given a series of mini-challenges, teaching them how to programme the HSR to perform movements and tasks. This culminated in [...]
Professor Ronald A. Roy has been announced as the new Head of the Department of Engineering Science from September 2019. Professor Ron Roy will take over from Professor Lionel Tarassenko, who guided the Department through a five-year period of extraordinary growth and impact. Please read full article here