Lab News

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June 23, 2022

Allison was highlighted in a Nature Communications viewpoint article: Rizzo, A., Querlioz, D., Sang, L. et al. Inspiring engineers. Commun Eng 1, 12 (2022).

June 8, 2022

Congratulations to CHARM PhD students Catie Cuan, Brian Do, and Elizabeth Vasquez for winning the School of Engineering (SoE) Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (JEDI) Travel Award during AY21-22, and to Brian Do for winning the Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Graduation Award for the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

May 27, 2022

Congratulations to CHARM PhD student Crystal Winston for winning the Best Presentation Award at the 2022 International Conference on Robotics and Automation Workshop on Leveraging Advancements in Smart Materials Science: Soft Robots Gaining New Abilities through Smart and Functional Materials. Co-authors are Zhenishbek Zhakypov, Mark Cutkosky, and Allison Okamura.

May 27, 2022

CHARM PhD student Godson Osele received the 2022-2023 RAISE (Research, Action, and Impact through Strategic Engagement) Doctoral Fellowship! Congratulations, Godson!

May 23, 2022

Congratulations to CHARMers presenting their work at the 2022 ICRA conference and associated workshops. Presenters (remote and in person) included Brian Do, Zonghe Chua, Godson Osele, Catie Cuan, Millie Salvato, Zhenish Zhakypov, and Crystal Winston. We also met up with CHARM Alums, including Cara Nunez (Harvard/Cornell), Laura Blumenschein (Purdue), Margaret Coad (Notre Dame), Julie Walker (Intuitive Surgical), Mine Sarac (Kadir Has), Fabio Stroppa (Kadir Has), and Brandon Ritter (Auris Health/J&J).

May 14 2022

CHARM PhD student Jasmin Palmer presented her work at the 2022 StanfordXR Conference!

March 28, 2022

CHARM PhD student Godson Osele received the Ford Fellowship! Congratulations Godson!

February 28, 2022

CHARM PhD student Godson Osele received the SystemX Robotics DEI Fellowship! Congratulations Godson!

February 4, 2022

The work of CHARM PhD students Jasmin Palmer and Godson Osele was featured in an article about medical mixed reality applications based on their projects for a Stanford course. You can also see a video of Jasmin's project and a video of Godson's project. (Image credit Nicholas Weiler)

January 31, 2022

CHARM PhD student Kyle Yoshida founded HONUA Scholars in 2020 to improve STEM education for Native Hawaiians. His work was recently featured in this article from his alma mater, Harvard University.

January 7, 2022

A Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute article highlighted Caitlyn Seim's research under her Wu Tsai Neuro interdisciplinary postdoctoral scholar award. (Image credit Andrew Broadhead)

December 14, 2021

Stanford released an article about our social touch work that refers to our recent paper (lead author Millie Salvato) published in Transactions on Haptics.

August 25, 2021

Congratulations to Millie Salvato for receiving a DAAD Fellowship!

August 14, 2021

We had a long-awaited lab retreat in Butano State Park and Bean Hollow State Beach.

July 9, 2021

Assistant Professor of Computer Science at USC and former CHARM Lab postdoc Heather Culbertson won the 2021 IEEE Technical Committee on Haptics Early Career Award. She gave a special talk and received the award today at the virtual IEEE World Haptics Conference. Congratulations, Heather!

July 6, 2021

Congratulations to CHARMers presenting their work at the 2021IEEE World Haptics Conference!

  • Caitlyn Seim presented her WHC paper: C. Seim, B. Ritter, K. Flavin, M. G. Lansberg, and A. M. Okamura, "Impressions of Vibrotactile Signals in Older Adults With and Without History of Stroke"
  • Sophia Williams presented her ToH paper: S. Williams and A. M. Okamura, "Body-Mounted Vibrotactile Stimuli: Simultaneous Display of Taps on the Fingertips and Forearm"
  • Mine Sarac presented TWO work-in-progress papers: M. Sarac, K. Hallett, J. Saunders, B. Makled and A. M. Okamura, "Augmented Needle Decompression Task with a Wrist-Worn Haptic Device" and M. Sarac, D. Loke, M. Evans, O. Chong, J. Saunders, B. Makled, A. M. Okamura, and K. Hallett, "Augmented Haptic Guidance for Needle Insertion with a 2-DoF Wrist-Worn Haptic Device"
  • Cara Welker presented her work-in-progress paper: C. G. Welker, S. H. Collins, and A. M. Okamura, "Human Perception of Wrist Torque Magnitude During Upper and Lower Extremity Movement"
  • Crystal Winston presented her work-in-progress paper: C. Winston, K. T. Yoshida, S. R. Williams and A. M. Okamura, "Embedded Laser-Cut Constraints for Elastomeric Soft Actuators"

June 13, 2021

We celebrated graduation and had an in-person hooding of PhD graduates at Allison's house with CHARM Lab members and their families. Ph.D. graduates from the CHARM lab in 2021 are pictured below, left to right: Margaret Coad in ME who is starting a faculty job at Notre Dame AME this summer, Cara Welker in BioE who will be faculty at University of Colorado ME in 2022 after a postdoc at Michigan, Sophia Williams in EE who is a research engineer at Auris Health (medical robotics company within J&J), and Cara Nunez in BioE who is going to be a faculty member at Cornell MAE after a postdoc (TBD). We also celebrated some of our 2021 MS graduates and also MS and PhD 2020 graduates.

June 1, 2021

Congratulations to CHARMers presenting their work at the 2021 ICRA conference! Our papers were:

  • B. H. Do, A. M. Okamura, K. Yamane, and L.H. Blumenschein, "Macro-Mini Actuation of Pneumatic Pouches for Soft Wearable Haptic Displays"
  • Z. Chua, A. M. Jarc and A. M. Okamura, "Toward Force Estimation in Robot-Assisted Surgery using Deep Learning with Vision and Robot State"
  • R. Jitosho, N. Agharese, A. Okamura, and Z. Manchester, "A Dynamics Simulator for Soft Growing Robots"

May 27, 2021

Cara Gonzalez Welker successfully defended her PhD thesis! Images below include Cara at her defense, with her committee, and celebrating with friends and family. Congratulations, Cara!

May 21, 2021

Margaret Coad successfully defended her PhD thesis! Images show Margaret with her defense committee on zoom and celebrating with friends after. Congratulations, Margaret!

May 5, 2021

Sophia Willams successfully defended her PhD thesis! Images show Sophia with her defense committee on zoom and celebrating with her parents after. Congratulations, Sophia!

April 16, 2021

YouTube channel Veritasium made a video about our vine robot, done in collaboration with Elliot Hawkes's lab.

February 18, 2021

YouTube channel Veritasium made a video about our shape-changing isoperimetric robot, done in collaboration with Sean Follmer and Mac Schwager's labs.

February 12, 2021

Our vine robot navigation work was featured in the ‘Video Friday’ section of the IEEE Spectrum website.

January 1, 2021

Congratulations to Caitlyn Seim for being awarded a 2021 Interdisciplinary Scholar Award (postdoc fellowship) from the Wu Tsai Neurosciences Institute at Stanford University!

October 7, 2020

Congratulations to Sophia Williams for being awarded a Stanford Robotics Center fellowship sponsored by FANUC!

October 3, 2020

Allison participated in Nosakhare (Nosa) Edoimioya‘s “How to do Grad School” podcast. You can listen to the recording at one of these locations:

September 10, 2020

Congratulations to Margaret Coad, Sang-Goo Jeong, Laura Blumenschein, Ming Luo, Usman Mehmood, and Jee-Hwan Ryu for our paper "A Tip Mount for Transporting Sensors and Tools using Soft Growing Robots" being a finalist for the 2020 IROS Best Paper Award on Robot Mechanisms and Design sponsored by ROBOTIS.

August 21, 2020

Laura (Song) Wu presented her SURI poster today during the ME Department's virtual event. In addition, Bryce Huerta (NSF REU program), Sochima Ezema (CS REU program), and Steven Trinh participated in remote research this summer. Thank you all for your contributions to CHARM research!

July 25, 2020

Congratulations to CHARM Lab members who have recently started (or are about to start) new jobs!

  • Melisa Orta Martinez is an Assistant Professor in the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University
  • Laura Blumenschein is an Assistant Professor in Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University
  • Ming Luo is an Assistant Professor in Mechanical Engineering at Washington State University
  • Nathan Usevitch is at Facebook Reality Labs in Redmond, WA

July 24, 2020

The paper "AFREEs: Active Fiber Reinforced Elastomeric Enclosures", published in the proceedings of the 2020 IEEE International Conference on Soft Robotics, was nominated for the Best Paper Award. Congratulations to authors Kyle Yoshida, XinYi Ren, Laura Blumenschein, Allison Okamura, and Ming Luo.

June 5, 2020

CHARM Lab partial research re-opening is starting, with training, contact tracing, social distancing, and sanitizing protocols in place. Be safe, everyone!

June 8, 2020

Allison gave a keynote talk at Virtual ICRA 2020 on "Haptics for Humans in a Physically Distanced World." View the talk here:

June 5, 2020

Allison presented at the world-wide virtual Robotics Today seminar. The video, "Soft Robot for Humanity", also includes commentary about anti-racism and diversity in robotics.

June 5, 2020

Congratulations to Dr. Melisa Orta Martinez, Dr. Cole Simpson, and Dr. Nathan Usevitch for submitting their theses! This year's CHARM Ph.D. graduates are honored with a virtual hooding here, and the officially ME celebration of graduates is here.

June 1, 2020

Congratulations to the CHARMers and many other Stanford robotics labs who presented their work at Virtual ICRA 2020! A list of Stanford papers is here -- a whopping 40 papers by my count!

May 5, 2020

Congratulations to Nathan Usevitch on passing his (online) PhD defense!

April 27, 2020

Congratulations to Cole Simpson on passing his (online) PhD defense!

April 15, 2020

Our collaboration with the Nanoscale Prototyping Laboratory on their "enhanced face mask project" was featured on Stanford news.

March 18, 2020

Nathan Usevitch and Zachary Hammond's article on Isoperimetric Truss robots was published in Science Robotics and attracted some media attention.

February 20, 2020

Congratulations to Julie Walker for successfully defending (and later submitting) her thesis! Julie will join Intuitive Surgical in April. The photo below shows Julie (and Allison) during Julie's post-defense celebration with several of the students Julie mentored during her PhD.

February 20, 2020

Brian Do's work was featured on Stanford's Instagram!

February 16, 2020

Recent CHARM PhD Graduate Yuhang Che’s work was featured by Stanford HAI:

“Tech that Adapts to People: A Tug in the Right Direction: As robots move out of isolated settings into everyday environments, they need to do more than react to people, says Yuhang Che, who received his PhD in mechanical engineering at Stanford in 2019 and is now a software engineer in motion planning at Waymo. Robots need to communicate in ways that yield predictable human responses.”

December 2, 2019

Welcome baby Lucy! Congratulations to Nathan and Andrea (as well as big brothers Peter and Owen.)

October 29, 2019

The vine robot invention, along with Allison, Elliot, Laura, and Margaret C., were featured on "Henry Ford's Innovation Nation with Mo Rocca" on CBS!

August 26, 2019

The IEEE RAS Soft Robotics Podcast features Allison this month.

August 23, 2019

Thank you to our SURF, REU, and SURI students who contributed to our research this summer! The students participating were Devin Hunter (SURF student from Edward Waters College, working with Fabio Stroppa on simulation and shared autonomy), Xin Yi Ren (REU student from Caltech, working with Kyle Yoshida on soft haptics), Lauren Pitzer (REU student from Stanford, working with Nathaniel Agharese on vine robot dynamics), Bryce Huerta (REU student from Stanford, working with Cole Simpson on wearable soft assistive devices and Cara Nunez on haptic perception studies), Nicole Salz (SURI student from Stanford, working with Sophia Williams and Mine Sarac on wearable haptics), and Valory Banashek (SURI student from Stanford, working with Brian Do on soft robot design).

April 8, 2019

Giada's and the Vine robot team's work are featured in the Digital Trend article on soft robotics!

April 4, 2019

Our work on a glove to aid in stroke recovery with postdoc Caitlyn Seim (who will start in May 2019) is featured by Stanford news!

March 5, 2019

Stanford news featured Robot Makers, including Allison and four other Stanford robot inventors.

November 26, 2019

Allison is featured in the podcast “People Behind the Science”! Her episode is on iTunes and on the podcast website.

August 31, 2018

Allison (as well as fellow ME faculty member John Dabiri and School of Education collaborator Jo Boaler) is featured in the Stanford commercial this year!

August 24, 2018

Undergraduates participating in the Mechanical Engineering Department's SURI (Summer Undergraduate Research Institute) and other programs presented posters today about their research projects. Thank you to Tita Kanjanapas, Tiger Sun, and Sadie Cutler (from BYU) for doing research in our lab this summer!

August 8, 2018

Sean Sketch's research on proprioception is featured on the Stanford School of Medicine blog.

August 7, 2018

Allison is featured on Stanford's Meet Our Faculty website.

June 20, 2018

Heather Culbertson, current assistant professor in computer science at USC and former CHARM postdoctoral scholar and research engineer, is featured on the USC School of Engineering page ( for the haptic device she developed with researchers at Stanford and in collaboration with Facebook. Check out the article to learn more about her work pertaining to social touch and using haptics to mimic human touch.

Congratulations Heather!

November 17, 2017

We attended the annual Bay Area Robotics Symposium (BARS). Those of us who stuck around after the symposium had nice dinner at Vik's Chaat House.

July 28, 2017

CHARM hosts the mechanical engineering research lab (MERL) barbecue. Around one hundred hungry mechanical engineering students were fed. Smiles all around.

July 19, 2017

Our Science Robotics paper, "A soft robot that navigates its environment through growth", has garnered a lot of interest from academics, industry, and media. Stanford news summarized the new type of robot here.

July 10-15, 2017

Allison and Tania attended the 39th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC'17), where Allison gave a keynote talk and Tania presented her work on patient-specific concentric tube robots. In addition to the conference, we enjoyed some outdoors adventures and met up with collaborator Marius Linguraru.

June 26-28, 2017

Lab retreat at Lake Tahoe!

June 6-9, 2017

CHARM goes to the World Haptics Conference! Attendees are Allison Okamura (who gave a keynote talk), Heather Culbertson, Melisa Orta Martinez, Jake Suchoski, Margaret Coad, Matthew Gilbertson, and former CHARM student Nick Colonnese.

May 29-June 2, 2017

CHARM goes to ICRA! Attendees are Allison Okamura, Giada Gerboni, Tania Morimoto, Joey Greer, Margaret Koehler, Cole Simpson, Laura Blumenschein, and Michael Raitor.

May 19, 2017

CHARM Lab member Margaret Koehler and rotator Jackie Yang presented at MECON, a half-day scientific conference highlighting student research activities in Stanford's Department of Mechanical Engineering. Those who didn't present enjoyed the presentations, food, and company!

April 24, 2017

Tania Morimoto successfully defended her PhD today. The pictures below show Tania speaking at the defense and celebrating with her family afterwards. Congratulations!

April 3, 2017

Allison was inducted into the Johns Hopkins University Society of Scholars, which honors scholars to have achieved "marked distinction in their careers since spending formative years at Hopkins." Allison was an Assistant, Associate, and Full Professor at Johns Hopkins from 2000-2011.

March 18, 2017

Two CHARM babies were born this quarter! Baby Owen came first (for Nathan and his family), followed quickly by Baby Tsubaki (For Yasu and his family). As you can see, they are already (very cute) Stanford fans.

March 17, 2017

CHARM Lab PhD student Cara Welker, undergraduate Michael Raitor, and rotator Jackie Yang won NSF Fellowships. Michael was also awarded a Fulbright for study in Australia. Congratulations to all!!

March 16, 2017

Sam Schorr successfully defended his PhD today. In May he will start a position at Intuitive Surgical. The pictures below show Sam speaking to a standing-room-only crowd and celebrating with champagne afterwards. Congratulations!

February 17, 2017

Sam Schorr will receive a CHI Best Paper Award for his paper "Fingertip tactile devices for virtual object manipulation and exploration".

February 9, 2017

Stanford has launched the Wearable Electronics Initiative (eWEAR). At the first annual meeting, Allison spoke about wearable haptics, and Jake Suchoski and Julie Walker presented posters.

February 7, 2017

CHARM Lab undergraduate researcher Michael Raitor received the Dean's Award for Academic Achievement, offered to only 9 students in the entire Stanford School of Engineering. Michael's accomplishments include teaching his own class and a first-authored paper at the 2017 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation. Congratulations, Michael!

January 16-20, 2017

Allison attended the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland to talk about Haptics, Human-machine interfaces, and Virtual and Augmented Reality. In addition to other talks, she presented at a session on "Reinventing the Senses with Stanford University" along with Jamie Henderson and E. J. Chichilnisky. Photos can be found here and here.

December 8, 2016

CHARM Holiday Dinner + baby shower for Nathan's and Yasu's families. Happy holidays everyone and congratulations to the expecting parents!

December 6, 2016

Our research is featured in the inaugural issue of Science Robotics. The paper is from a collaborative project that former postdoc Ilana Nisky and Allison Okamura did with Chris Gerdes's group. It's a unique take on the study of human motor learning/adaptation, examining handover from an autonomous vehicle to a human driver. Here is the press release.

October 1, 2016

We released a new edition of the Springer Handbook of Robotics. Stanford people involved include Editor Oussama Khatib and Chapter authors Mark Cutkosky, David Lentink, Anna Petrovskaya, Victor Scheinman, Amanda Stowers, and Allison Okamura. All the authors are featured in a handbook video.

September 18, 2016

CHARMers made the trek to a stretch of the Russian River in Forestville, CA for a combination of lab bonding and post-ICRA deadline decompression. It was epic.

August 26, 2016

This summer, we had two "Round 2" SURI students: Michael Raitor and Annalisa Taylor. Michael was mentored by Heather and Julie, and Annalisa was mentored by Melisa.

June 29, 2016

Tania Morimoto, Yuhang Che, and Allison Okamura attended the 2016 IEEE BioRob Conference in Singapore. Tania won the National Science Foundation-sponsored Best Student Paper Award for her paper "Surgeon Design Interface for Patient-Specific Concentric Tube Robots", which describes work done in collaboration with Joey Greer and surgeon collaborator Michael Hsieh. Also, Allison gave a keynote talk on "Modeling, Planning, and Control for Robot-Assisted Medical Interventions".

(Left) Tania receiving the Best Student Paper award from NSF program manager Alexander Leonessa. (Right) Yuhang with his poster, along with Tania, Allison, and Laura Blumenschein, a PhD student who will be joining the CHARM Lab this summer. Laura was at BioRob representing Marcia' O'Malley's laboratory, where she completed her MS thesis.

June 29, 2016

Check out Next Generation Robotics, a Computing Community Consortium (CCC) white paper. Following the Robotics Roadmaps published in 2009 and 2013, this report sets forth a perspective of progress in robotics over the past five years, and provides a set of recommendations for the future. The white paper is co-authored by Henrik I Christensen, Allison Okamura, Maja Mataric, Vijay Kumar, Greg Hager, and Howie Choset, and it includes input from dozens of robotics researchers and industry practitioners who participated in workshops held in early 2016..

May 16-21, 2016

Elliot Hawkes, Kirsten Kaplan, Andrew Stanley, Jake Suchoski, Heather Culbertson, and Allison Okamura attended the 2016 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Stockholm, Sweden.

CHARM Lab members, alumni, and friends enjoying themselves at ICRA 2016

May 16, 2016

Postdoc Heather Culbertson's work was featured in a New Yorker article about the sense of touch.

April 22, 2016

Our previous work integrating the Hapkit with Matlab is now featured in a Mathworks educational video.

April 8-11, 2016

Heather Culbertson, Melisa Orta, and Julie Walker attached the 2016 IEEE Haptics Symposium in Philadelphia. All three gave oral presentations and demonstrations of their research.

March 31, 2016

The Hapkit and online haptics course were featured on ASME News.

March 26-June 18, 2016

Allison (and her family) will be in Kyoto, Japan for Spring Quarter, teaching with Stanford's Bing Overseas Studies Program. Pictures and news of activities of the program are posted on the Stanford Program in Kyoto Facebook Page. Nora's blog about our adventures is here.

March 18, 2016

Andrew Stanley successfully defended his Ph.D. defense today -- congratulations! Below, Andrew is showing his family his 100-cell Haptic Jamming device.

March 18, 2016

Darrel Deo was awarded the Stanford Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education (EDGE) Doctoral Fellowship. Congratulations, Darrel!

March 18, 2016

Sam Schorr was awarded the Link Foundation Fellowship in Modeling, Simulation, and Training for the 2016-17 academic year. Congratulations, Sam!

March 13, 2016

Allison was featured on the National Geographic Channel show Brain Games (Season 7, Episode 5: "Super Senses"). Allison runs a couple of mini-experiments demonstrating haptic illusions on the show. There is a publicly available clip of one of the experiments here.

December 12, 2015

Some CHARMers ran the Summit Rock Half Marathon in the beautiful redwood groves of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Sean won overall, Kirsten was the first-place woman, and Kirk, Andrew, and Joey were 3rd, 4th, and 5th, respectively, in their age group. Amazing! Allison managed to finish -- enough said.

November 10, 2015

Sean Sketch was honored today for receiving a Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellowship. Congratulations, Sean!

November 9, 2015

Kirk Nichols successfully defended his Ph.D. defense today -- congratulations! (Kirk is shown below giving his talk -- wearing his formal kilt.)

November 3, 2015

Troy Adebar successfully defended his Ph.D. defense today -- congratulations! (Troy is shown below giving his talk.)

October 23, 2015

The Bay Area Robotics Symposium (formerly known as the Stanford-Berkeley Robotics Symposium) will be held in Berkeley on Oct. 23, 2015! Allison will give a talk, and Kamran and Sean will give posters.

October 8, 2015

Jorge Cham's PhD Movie 2 screens on campus! Looks for characters named "Allison" and "Mariko Okamura". NOT a coincidence!

September 28 - October 2, 2015

Allison and Kirk attended IROS 2015 in Hamburg, Germany. No pictures, because Allison's cell phone died. :(

September 1, 2015

It's official, Allison is now a FULL Professor. Apparently that means she can be put on more committees.

August 28, 2015

Thank you to the terrific group of SURI students (and their mentors) who worked in the CHARM Lab this summer. Here are the students and their projects/mentors:

  • Aaron Barron - Hapkit design and Virtual mass experiments (mentor: Tania and Jake)
  • Annalisa Taylor - Hapkit design (mentor: Melisa)
  • Andre Cornman - Robotic brain catheter (mentor: Lizmarie)
  • Zoe Goldblum - Robotic brain catheter (mentor: Margaret)
  • Brice Dudley - Robotic exoskeleton design (mentor: Sean)
  • Javier Reyna - Robotic exoskeleton design (mentor: Sean)
  • Gabe Haro - Human-robot collaboration for minimally invasive surgery (mentor: Yuhang)
  • Coleen Holden - Laboratory science using automated robotic lab assistants (mentor: Kamran and Antony)
  • Michael Raitor - Haptic feedback for ultrasound guidance (mentor: Julie)

August 7, 2015

We had three smart and enthusiastic high school researchers in the lab this summer:

  • Alyssa Lukpat - Robotic brain catheter (mentor: Andre)
  • Teresa Faasolo - Robotic exoskeleton design (mentor: Javier)
  • Alex Mallery - Haptic feedback for ultrasound guidance (mentor: Michael)

May 26-30, 2015

CHARM Lab members and past members attended ICRA 2015 in Seattle, WA. Our group included Allison, Joey, Yuhang, Zhan Fan, Nick, Lawrence, Cliff, Sean, Darrel, and Ilana. We also got to see Ann Majewicz and her new students from UT Dallas, as well as Dana Damian who is currently at Harvard Chidren's Hospital. Allison's former PhD student Robert Webster (now a professor at Vanderbilt) was awarded the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Academic Career Award. Also, our new postdoc Elliot Hawkes won a best student paper award for his work with Mark Cutkosky.

May 22, 2015

Nick Colonnese successfully defended his Ph.D. defense today -- congratulations! (Nick is shown below with his extended family.)

May 20, 2015

Congratulations to Zhan Fan Quek, who successfully defended his Ph.D. defense today! (Zhan Fan is shown below during his talk.)

May 4, 2015

Stanford ME holds its first Research Conference. Lizmarie presented her research during the oral session, and several other lab members presented posters.

March 29, 2015

Tania Morimoto is the first woman to finish the San Francisco Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon, with a time of 1:20:54. Go Tania!

March 23-25, 2015

The CHARM Lab had a retreat in Kirkwood, CA. We had fun skiing, throwing snowballs, running, watching Big Hero 6, and ...yes... discussing research.

October 17, 2014

The Stanford-Berkeley Robotics Symposium is today! Lizmarie presented a poster about magnetic microcatheter manipulation, Andrew presented a poster about particle jamming haptic devices, and Allison gave a talk about our work on haptic feedback for teleoperation and augmented reality.

October 3, 2014

The Stanford Robotics Seminar is back! Please join us for food and student presentations approximately biweekly this year.

October 1, 2014

The Online Haptics Class (free for anyone) has been released as a self-paced course. Also, the new 3D printed Hapkit design has been released. Thank you to Akzl, Jeanny, Tania, Melisa, and Agnes for your contributions to the new design!

September 21, 2014

CHARM summer undergraduates Alexa Siu and Michael Lin Yang entered a Georgia Tech Hackathon, and here is their haptics-related entry: hapmotu. Way to keep up those haptics skills, Alexa and Michael!

September 14-18, 2014

CHARMers Troy Adebar, Ilana Nisky, and Allison Okamura, attended the IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems in Chicago, Illinois. Troy presented his work on "Recursive Estimation of Needle Pose for Control of 3D-Ultrasound-Guided Robotic Needle Steering", and Ilana organized a workshop (in collaboration with Tony Jarc of Intuitive Surgical, Inc.) on The Role of Human Sensorimotor Control in Surgical Robotics. Allison gave a session keynote "Haptics in Robot-Assisted Surgery" and also talked about "The effect of robotic manipulators on surgeon movement" at Ilana's workshop. We had a great time in Chicago, including a bike tour of the lakefront area.

September 1, 2014

Our research was featured in an article in the New York Times. The article includes photos of current and former lab members Darrel Deo, Michele Rotella, Zhan Fan Quek, and Tania Morimoto.

August 21, 2014

This is the last week for some of our summer undergraduates. The students are from Stanford and are participating in the Summer Undergraduate Research Institute (SURI) program, except where noted. Front row, left to right: Akzl Pultorak, Caroline Abbott, Caroline Fong, Alexa Siu (Georgia Tech, SSRP/Amgen summer program), Michael Lin Yang (UC Berkeley, NSF Research Experience for Undergraduates Fellow), Sanjay Srinivas. Back row, left to right: Iris Yan, Jeanny Wang, Nina Jimenez, Sarah Cabreros. Congratulations to all our undergraduates for their fantastic summer work!

July 21, 2014

As a lab team building event, and a special goodbye to graduate student Ann Majewicz and postdocs Ilana Nisky and Ryder Winck, we did a lab kayaking tour at Half Moon Bay, beach/hike time, and dinner at Buca di Beppo in Palo Alto. In the late summer, all three of these CHARMers will be taking faculty positions! Ann will be starting in the Mechanical Engineering Department at University of Texas at Dallas, Ilana in the Biomedical Engineering Department at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and Ryder in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. We will miss all of them!

July 7, 2014

Ann Majewicz successfully defended her Ph.D. thesis, "Robotic Needle Steering: Design and Evaluation for Clinical Application". Ann also walked in graduation and was hooded last month. Congratulations, Ann!

June 16, 2014

Our friend and collaborator Prof. Steven Hsiao at Johns Hopkins University died of lung cancer. He was the co-advisor of Ph.D. student Jim Gwilliam and served on the thesis committees of several other of Allison's students. Just a few weeks before Steve died, Jim's paper (with Steve as the senior author) was recognized as an "editor's pick" by the Journal of Neurophysiology. Remembrances of Steve are here. We will miss him sorely.

May 31-June 6, 2014

CHARMers Allison Okamura, Ann Majewicz, Ryder Winck, and Sean Sketch went to the 2014 International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Hong Kong. Ann presented her work (in collaboration with Josh Siegel and Andrew Stanley) on duty-cycled needle steering, and Ryder presented his work (in collaboration with Sean Sketch and members of the BDML). Allison talked about educational haptics at the Workshop on MATLAB/Simulink for Robotics Education and Research, spoke at the ICRA Women's Lunch, and gave a talk at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. We had some great meals, including adventures in fresh seafood with the BDML and CamLab)!

May 30, 2014

Allison's class ME 327: Design and Control of Haptic Systems demonstrated their final projects along with students from CS 277 Experimental Haptics.

April 7, 2014

Congratulations to Ilana who won the best poster award under the "robotic-surgeon interface" category at the 2014 IDEAS Symposium on Surgical Robotics: from Principles to Practice that took place in Boston on April 5.

April 1, 2014

Someone hacked into our website and changed our "People" page! We managed to fix it, but we have captured this April Fool for posterity: Attach:AprilFool2014.pdf

March 21, 2014

Congratulations to Ann who won the best poster award at the 2014 NSF Early Career Professionals Workshop on Exploring New Frontiers in Cyber-Physical Systems that took place in Washington, DC on March 13-14. As part of her award, she will be attending CPS Week in Berlin this April.

February 28, 2014

Allison is a co-author on a paper on the role of haptic feedback in rhythmic motor control that was published in the Journal of Neurophysiology as a cover article (see below). This work was a collaboration with Noah Cowan's Limbs Lab at Johns Hopkins University, and was featured in this news article.

About the cover: Little is known about how haptic and visual feedback are integrated during rhythmic behaviors such as juggling and walking. To address this question, participants performed a simplified juggling task in which they used a haptic interface to bounce a ball on a paddle. A small impulsive force could be provided to the hand at the instant the ball struck the paddle. The addition of this timing cue dramatically improved juggling performance, likely by reducing the brain's uncertainty about the state of the ball. Photo by Josh Casey. From Ankarali MM, Sen HT, De A, Okamura AM, Cowan NJ. Haptic feedback enhances rhythmic motor control by reducing variability, not convergence rate. J Neurophysiol; published ahead of print December 26, 2013, doi:10.1152/jn.00140.2013.

February 26, 2014

Allison, Ilana, Tricia, Nick, Zhan Fan, Andrew, Tania, and Adam attended the 2014 IEEE Haptics Symposium in Houston Texas. Nick and Zhan Fan gave oral presentations, Tricia and Adam presented posters, and Zhan Fan, Andrew, and Tania gave demonstrations. Congratulations to Zhan Fan for winning the Best Student Paper Award! Many others were Finalists for awards, which is also a big honor (Adam/Andrew for Best Poster, Nick for Best Paper, Zhan Fan for Best Demo, and Tania for Best Demo).

Zhan Fan and Ilana being congratulated for the Best Student Paper Award.

November 19, 2013

Congratulations to Dr. Tricia Gibo for successfully defending her Ph.D. thesis! Tricia was co-advised by Allison Okamura and Amy Bastian. Starting in a couple months, she will be a postdoc at TU Delft in The Netherlands (in David Abbink's research group).

November 4, 2013

The Online Haptics Class has launched! A huge thanks to Tania, principal designer of Hapkit, collaborators Paulo Blikstein and Doug Miller, the Vice Provost for Online Learning (for sponsorship and course production/tech support), the National Science Foundation, and all the CHARM Lab members who helped assemble the Hapkit boxes for the online students (see image below).

October 22, 2013

Congrats to Tania Morimoto, Ryder Winck, and Jeff Kessler/Curtis Lovelace for giving well-received talks at the ASME Dynamic System and Control Conference today. Ann Majewicz and Nick Colonnese also gave very popular demonstrations -- there were long lines to try out needle steering and stable haptic renderings! Former visiting scholar also gave a talk at DSCC, and present his latest work at our lab meeting.

October 22, 2013

We are now accepting applications for the Online Haptics Class using Hapkits! (Applications due Oct. 28, class starts Nov. 4)

October 17-18, 2013

Allison visited robotics labs at EPFL and ETH Zurich. She got to see our former visiting student Mike Rinderknecht in his natural environment, and compare The ETHZ high-fidelity Haptic Paddles with our low-cost Hapkits.

October 15, 2013

Allison was featured on RoboHub's "25 women in robotics you need to know about" article in celebration of Ada Lovelace Day.

October 14, 2013

Our panel on "When AR meets the OR - Robotics and AR in Surgery" was accepted for SXSW 2014. Allison will present at South by Southwest (SXSW) (a film, interactive, and music festival) in March 2014, along with Prof. Katherine Kuchenbecker from UPenn and Catherine Mohr from Intuitive Surgical.

October 15, 2013

Today the CHARM Lab merges with the CamLab (Prof. David Camarillo's Bioengineering research group). The CamLab will share our space in MERL 126 until their new building is ready in mid-2014. Welcome, Cammies!

October 1-2, 2013

Allison and Ryder attended the National Robotics Initiative PI Meeting in Washington, DC. There were research presentations, posters, and workshops -- but unfortunately no program managers to see it due to the government shutdown!

September 27, 2013

Smooth Teleoperators

2012-2013 Lab News

2011-2012 Lab News