Kristofer S.J. Pister (Advisor)

Research Advised by Professor Kristofer S.J. Pister

Pister Group:  List of Projects | List of Researchers

BSAC's Best: Fall 2020 Oral Presentation Winners Announced

September 24, 2020

BSAC would like to thank all of the researchers who presented their research during BSAC's Fall 2020 Research Review, September 21-23.

BSAC Industrial Members voted for their favorite oral presentations and the results are in. Please join us in congratulating the winners of the Fall 2020 Best of BSAC honors, Mallika Bariya and Daniel Teal!


BSAC's Best: Spring 2018 Winners Announced

March 8, 2018

BSAC would like to thank the 123 researchers who presented their work in poster or plenary sessions at the Spring 2018 BSAC Research Review on March 7-9.

56 attending industrial members from 32 member organizations voted for the best presentations and posters, resulting in Best Paper and Best Poster awards (certificate and cash).

BSAC Best Paper

Qi Wang

Jackson Paddock

Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences
Professor Kristofer S.J. Pister (Advisor)
M.S. 2021

MEMS-Actuated Carbon Fibers

Rachel Zoll
Kristofer S.J. Pister

This thesis presents a MEMS actuator capable of extruding or pulling itself along a sub-10μm diameter carbon fiber. The compact silicon microfabricated MEMS actuator can extrude fibers over many millimeters of distance with micron-level precision and is powered externally via high-voltage control signals.

One specific application demonstrated in this work is the insertion of microelectrodes for cortical neural recording. Microwire and microelectrode arrays used for cortical neural...

The Ionocraft: Flying Microrobots With No Moving Parts

Daniel Drew
Kristofer S.J. Pister
Enabling a future full of insect-scale robots will require progress on a huge number of fronts, one of which is the development of mobility platforms designed to operate beyond the scaling frontier of commercially available solutions. The vast majority of researchers seeking to create functional centimeter-scale flying robots have turned towards biomimeticpropulsion mechanisms, specifically flapping wings. In this work I take a very different tack, investigating a propulsion mechanism with no natural analogue —...

BPN873: Small Autonomous Robot Actuator (SARA)

Alex Moreno
Austin Patel
Daniel Teal
Andrew Fearing

The Small Autonomous Robot Actuator (SARA) aims to integrate the Single Chip micro Mote (SCuM), a small millimeter scale solar panel and high voltage buffer (Zappy2), and a MEMS 40-100V inchworm motor that has been demonstrated to push a 7um diameter carbon filament through an adjustable width channel at speeds of 10um/s to 200um/s. SARA has been demonstrated to operate the inchworm motor at 1 Hz with 100V square waves under 200mW/cm2 on separate PCBs and transmit 802.15.4 packets with temperature estimates between 35.5-40 C with a 0.28 std error from SCuM to an OpenMote while on a...

Design and User Guide for the Single Chip Mote Digital System

Sahar Mesri
Kristofer S.J. Pister
Ali M. Niknejad

In order to create a low-power and lightweight wireless sensor node for the control of MEMS microrobots, the Single Chip Mote project aspires to integrate a fully-functioning microprocessor, radio, sensors, and solar cells onto a single die, while also eliminating the need for external components through careful architectural design. This report presents the past two years of work on the design of the Single Chip Mote digital system, complete with an ARM Cortex-M0 microprocessor, control logic for an IEEE 802.15.4 radio, special-purpose radio timers, and ADC interface. This includes...

FEA-Assisted Analysis and Gain Optimization of a Micromechanical Resonant Displacement Amplifier

Gleb Melnikov
Clark T.-C. Nguyen
Kristofer S.J. Pister

Micromechanical resonant switches have the potential to greatly outperform currently dominant semiconductor switches due to their higher figures of merit. Of the current designs available, resonant MEMS switches are among the most promising, as they can achieve very large amplitudes at resonance with greatly reduced actuation voltages compared to more conventional MEMS switches, such as those that rely on pull-in based actuation.

Such resonant micromechanical devices are currently in their infancy, and require additional optimization and analysis to resolve their...

Dosimetry Dust: An Ultrasonic Backscatter Implantable Dosimetry Device

Stefanie Garcia
Michel M. Maharbiz
Kristofer S.J. Pister

Proton beam therapy is a well-established medical procedure for treating certain kinds of cancer, and is uniquely suited for treatment of head, neck, and eye tumors. Despite the continuous improvements in medical physics treatment plan simulations, improper tissue irradiation can easily occur if there is a shift in the tumor and/or critical organs during the irradiation process. A fully implantable dosimeter for in vivo dose measurements can provide closed loop treatment feedback to a physician during radiation treatments, and assist in enabling full irradiation of a tumor. This work...