Purdue University Graduate School
PhD Thesis Georges Adam.pdf (45.71 MB)

Advanced Force Sensing and Novel Microrobotic Mechanisms for Biomedical Applications

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posted on 2022-08-12, 14:30 authored by Georges AdamGeorges Adam

Over the years, research and development of micro-force sensing techniques has gained a lot of traction, especially for microrobotic applications, such as micromanipulation and biomedical material characterization studies. Moreover, in recent years, new microfabrication techniques have been developed, such as two-photon polymerization (TPP), which enables fast prototyping, high resolution features, and the utilization of a wide range of materials. In general, the main goals of this work are to improve the resolution and range of novel vision-based force sensors, create microrobotic and micromanipulation systems capable of tackling a multitude of applications, and ensuring these systems are flexible and provide a sold foundation to the advancement of the field as a whole.

The current work can be divided into three main parts: (i) a wireless magnetic microrobot with 2D vision-based force sensing, (ii) a 3D vision-based force sensing probe for tethered micromanipulators, and (iii) a micromanipulation system capable of accurately controlling and performing advanced tasks. The vision-based force sensors developed here have resolutions ranging from the mN range to even sub-$\mu$N range, depending on the material used, geometry, and overall footprint. 

In part (i), the microrobot has been developed mainly for biomedical applications \textit{in vitro}, with the ability to perform mechanical characterization and microassembly tasks of different rigid and biomedical materials. In part (ii), a similar sensor mechanic is used, but now adapted to a micromanipulation probe, which is able to detect forces in three dimensions and work in dry environments. In conjunction with the micromanipulation system described in part (iii), the system is capable of performing advanced assembly applications, including accurate assembly and 3D mounting of microparts. 

With the introduction of TPP technologies to these works, the next generation of adaptable microrobotics and micromanipulation systems for advanced biomedical applications is starting to take shape, ever more versatile, smaller, more accurate, and with more advanced capabilities. This work shows the progression of these overall systems and gives a glimpse of what is possible with TPP and the technologies to come.


NRI: Towards Dexterous Micromanipulation and Assembly

Directorate for Computer & Information Science & Engineering

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Degree Type

  • Doctor of Philosophy


  • Mechanical Engineering

Campus location

  • West Lafayette

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

David Cappelleri

Additional Committee Member 2

Karthik Ramani

Additional Committee Member 3

Song Zhang

Additional Committee Member 4

Dimitrios Peroulis

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