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Seminar: Dr. Jiachen Zhang

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Small-scale robots: Miniature but capable robots to revolutionize healthcare



We are witnessing an exponential growth of the impact of small-scale robotics in recent years. These tiny robots have a characteristic length from several millimeter down to hundreds of nanometers. This extreme miniaturization enables these robots to access constrained space buried deep inside human body, where conventional devices couldn’t reach, and thus it dramatically benefits minimally invasive diagnosis and treatment. In particular, millimeter-scale robots are “small enough” to go inside the natural cavities and ducts of human body, while at the same time they are “big enough” to conduct relatively complex operations such as drug delivery and biopsy. In this presentation, I will introduce my past and current research projects in small-scale robotics, and discuss my future research plans. I will talk about the design, fabrication, control, and application of these robots. Furthermore, I will discuss how this emerging field could have imminent and far-reaching positive impact on modern healthcare.

Speaker Bio

Dr. Jiachen Zhang joined the department of Biomedical Engineering at the City University of Hong Kong as an Assistant Professor in the summer of 2021. After graduating with a Ph.D. degree from University of Toronto in 2018, he worked from 2019-2021 as a Humboldt Research Fellow at Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Germany. Since 2014, Dr. Zhang’s research has been focused on the development of millimeter-scale and micrometer-scale robotic systems for biomedical applications. He utilizes magnetic field as the primary actuation and control signal and various stimuli-responsive smart materials as the building blocks for multi-functional small-scale robots. Dr. Zhang envisions that small-scale robots are ideal candidates to meet the demands posed by modern healthcare in its evolution to minimize invasiveness.