Kristofer S.J. Pister (Advisor)

Research Advised by Professor Kristofer S.J. Pister

BPN803: Single Chip Mote

Alex Moreno
Titan Yuan
Austin Patel
Abanob Bostouros
Lydia Lee
2022

The single chip micro mote 3C (SCµM-3C) was designed to be a wireless sensor node on a chip capable of joining a network as a bare die with a standards compliant BLE and 802.15.4 mesh communication radio while fully self-contained and functional with no external components. SCµM-3C’s deep level of integration allows users to connect a battery, program using a touchless optical programmer and be ready to connect to the network. As a sensor, SCµM-3C was shown to have a ~1 cm accurate 3D localization estimate and measure temperatures from 0 to 100C with <2 C of precision....

Daniel Teal

Graduate Student Researcher
Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences
Professor Kristofer S.J. Pister (Advisor)
Ph.D. 2025 (Anticipated)

Currently a PhD student under Prof. Kristofer Pister; earned a BS mechanical engineering / math from the University of Texas at Austin. Builds microfabrication tools, robots, and miscellaneous devices.

BPN735: Walking Silicon Microrobots

Alexander Alvara
2022

This project focuses on developing a new generation of millimeter scale MEMS-based autonomous walking robots with self-righting capability. These robots are based on electrostatic actuators driving planar silicon linkages, all fabricated in the device layer of a silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafer. By using electrostatic actuation, these legs have the advantage of being low power compared to other microrobot leg designs. This is key to granting the robot autonomy through low-power energy harvesting. The ultimate goal will be to join these silicon legs with a CMOS brain, battery power, a high...

BPN987: Single-chip µV Precision ADC for SCµM-V (New Project)

Yu-Chi Lin
Daniel Lovell
2022

We are developing a mm-square low-power wireless ADC that will detect and transmit microvolt signals, which is promising for precision measurements in biomedical applications, automotive, and mobiles. This project specifically aims to be used for a concurrent TMS-EEG-fMRI system, a highly desirable temporal and spatial imaging method to unveil the mystery of brain circuits. The precision ADC will make it possible to acquire EEG signals down to 10µV while wireless transmission will avoid safety heating issues by current induced in wired-loop under time-varying magnetic field in MRI....

Yu-Chi Lin

Graduate Student Researcher
Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences
Professor Kristofer S.J. Pister (Advisor)
Ph.D. 2027 (Anticipated)

BPN915: Control of Microrobots with Reinforcement Learning

Yichen Liu
Eric Chu
2022

Generating low-level robot controllers often requires manual parameters tuning and significant system knowledge, which can result in long design times for highly specialized controllers. Moreover, with micro-robots the dynamics change on each design iteration and there is little experimental time to tune controllers. To address the problem of rapidly generating low-level controllers without domain knowledge, we propose using model-based reinforcement learning (MBRL) trained on few minutes of automatically generated data. Initial results showed the capabilities of MBRL on a Crazyflie...

BPN970: Rotary Inchworm Motor for Underwater Microrobot Propulsion

Mauricio J. Bustamante
2022

Autonomous swimming microrobots for biomedical applications and distributed sensing require locally controllable swimming mechanisms. This project aims to develop underwater, rotary electrostatic inchworm motors for artificial flagella. Our proposed design uses gap closing actuators with an angle arm design, similar to existing inchworm motors, to drive a central rotor, all fabricated with an SOI process. An artificial flagella is attached the rotor, converting the rotational motion into propulsion. Major challenges include efficient operation of electrostatic motors underwater and...

BPN959: Self-Righting for Micro Robots

Alexander Alvara
2022

In developing micro-robots for exploration in non-uniform terrain, it is often the case that robots fall over. This work seeks to provide a solution in the self-righting of autonomous micro-robots to overturn a 1cc, 1 gram cube microrobot with regular octahedral symmetry that has fallen on either of its four sides and overturning said microrobot once upside down. Our design currently consists of a 3-bar linkage in conjunction with an electrostatic inchworm motor. First-generation devices are in fab as of August. Hand analysis indicates that self-righting from any face should be...

BPN951: Berkeley Low-cost Interplanetary Solar Sail (BLISS)

Alexander Alvara
Lydia Lee
2022

Space exploration often costs multiple millions of dollars for each exploratory mission to get a single piece of equipment into orbit. These missions usually return information in the form of scans or images or samples in the form of extracted material. This work proposes the manufacture and deployment of thousands of imaging capable solar sails systems with 10 gram payloads. Power generation is enabled through solar panels and batteries. Navigation is enabled through one square meter solar sails maneuvered by inchworm motors. Communications are enabled by laser transmitters and SPAD...