Drone and rover tag teams could help solve the world’s deadly land mine problem

Under Emerging TechDigital Trends interviewed Craig Putnam, associate director of robotics engineering, about the student-led project that is developing the autonomous rover and payload-deploying drone. The goal is to find and safely destroy hidden munitions that kill or maim as many as 20,000 people around the world each year. Putnam told Digital Trends, “the goal was to come up with a system that was as low cost as reasonably possible so that it could be afforded by some remote village that has a problem with land mines in the area.”

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WPI receives $3M to study human-robot workplace interaction

The Worcester Business Journal reported on WPI receiving $3 million from the National Science Foundation to study human-robot interaction in the workplace. Eight WPI researchers are involved: Cagdas Onal (principal investigator), Yunus Telliel, Jeanine Skorinko, Winston Soboyejo, Jing Xiao, Pratap Rao, Soussan Djamasbi and Jane Li
 

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Robotics Engineering Research Symposium

Jing Xiao, director of Robotics Engineering, and PhD student Alexandra Valiton were interviewed by Worcester News Tonight about the recent Robotics Engineering Research Symposium.

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WPI engineer creating prostate-exam robot receives $2M grant

The Worcester Business Journal featured Haichong (Kai) Zhang, assistant professor in biomedical engineering and robotics engineering, and his receiving a five-year $1,869,423 Director's Early Independence Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). It’s for his ongoing work to create a robotic system that will detect and analyze three different indicators of prostate cancer. Gregory Fischer, professor of robotics engineering, is also working on the project.

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Rover-Drone Combo Hope to Spot and Destroy Landmines

BBC News profiled WPI landmine-related research in this segment. “I believe we’re probably the first that’s been doing the robot drone duo in the context of looking for landmines. Initially, it was just the aerial part then we worked on the rover. Now we’re trying to bring it all together,” Craig Putnam, associate director, robotics engineering, told the BBC. The student teams are developing the autonomous rover and payload-deploying drone to find and safely destroy hidden munitions that kill or maim as many as 20,000 people around the world each year.

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Boston Dynamics’ Spot robot hits the street, work sites

Jing Xiao, director, robotics engineering, was interviewed for this The Boston Globe article. “Its entertainment value is already very obvious,” she said. “But because it’s so versatile in going over all kinds of terrain, it can be very useful for applications such as search and rescue.”

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The robots in our future

WPI mechanical engineering professor Greg Fischer, the director of WPI’s Automation and Interventional Medicine Lab, is noted in a story about medical robotics and his research on MRI-compatible robots for cancer therapy.

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WPI Develops Next Generation of Autonomous Vehicle Ideas

The Robotics Business Review highlighted work by Major Qualifying Project (MQP) teams, ranging from an autonomous vehicle platform to a robot that can guide prospective students around a campus.

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Eye On Education: WPI Robotics Championship

CBS Boston's Eye on Education featured the FIRST Robotics News England Championship, which was hosted at WPI. Over 3,000 high school students designed solutions that could "collect samples on another planet with unpredictable terrain and weather. (Clip begins at the :41 second mark).

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WPI Digital Health Innovations

Worcester News Tonight featured the news of PracticePoint at WPI’s Gateway Park being named the site of the first so-called “sandbox” by Gov. Baker who was on campus yesterday to announce the new grant program. “It’s going to be about engineering and data science, and those are two areas where WPI is a national leader,” Gov. Baker said (8:45 mark). President Laurie Leshin added, “There’s so much innovation happening right here in the heart of the commonwealth, right here in Worcester. It’s fantastic to see the state recognizing that.”

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Movers and Shakers

Gregory Fischer, William Smith Dean’s Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics Engineering, was noted in the Worcester Business Journal on his being elected a senior member of the National Academy of Inventors.

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College Town: WPI Professor Elected a Senior Member of the National Academy of Inventors

This week’s College Town in the Telegram & Gazette led off with Gregory Fischer, William Smith Dean’s Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics Engineering, being elected a senior member of the National Academy of Inventors. The article noted some of Fischer’s work, including development of an MRI-compatible robotic system, which will enable more effective treatment of metastatic brain tumors.

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New Robotic System Aims to Destroy Brain Tumors

WPI researchers led by Gregory S. Fischer, associate professor of mechanical engineering and robotics engineering, were featured in Machine Design. They, along with Albany Medical College and corporate partners, received a five-year, $3.5 million award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to continue developing an innovative medical robotic system. 

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Robotic system targets brain tumors with high-intensity ultrasound

Physics World reported on WPI researchers led by Gregory S. Fischer, PhD, associate professor of mechanical engineering and robotics engineering, and Albany Medical College, along with corporate partners, receiving a five-year, $3.5 million award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to continue developing an innovative robotic system. Operating within an MRI scanner, it can deliver a minimally invasive probe into the brain to destroy metastatic brain tumors with high-intensity therapeutic ultrasound under real-time guidance.

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WPI receives $3.5M to develop robotic system to eliminate brain tumors

The Worcester Business Journal reported on research led by Gregory S. Fischer, PhD, associate professor of mechanical engineering and robotics engineering, and Albany Medical College, along with corporate partners, receiving a five-year, $3.5 million award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to continue developing an innovative robotic system to treat brain tumors.

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WPI Alumni-Led Team Wins 2018 Battlebots World Championship

Charter TV3 Worcester News Tonight is the latest media outlet to report on a WPI alumni-led team winning the 2018 BattleBots World Championship. The station aired an interview with Bite Force team captain Paul Ventimiglia ’12. 

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Sailing Away: Behind WPI’s Victorious SailBot 2018 Pursuit

WPI’s sailing prowess was highlighted in Robotics Business Review, " Sailing Away: Behind WPI's Victorious Sailbot 2018 Pursuit." “For the second year in a row, a team from Worcester Polytechnic Institute won the event,” the article stated.  

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This Robot Will Hunt Lionfish to Save Coral Reefs

Popular Mechanics wrote about undergraduate students from Worcester Polytechnic Institute building an autonomous underwater robot that could help reduce the threat posed by an invasive species of fish. 

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Craig Putnam Speaks to WBUR About the Lionfish Robot

Craig Putnam, senior instructor in computer science and associate director of the Robotics Engineering Program, was interviewed on WBUR radio about undergraduate students building an autonomous underwater robot that could help reduce the threat posed by an invasive species of fish.  

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How to Get Siri and Alexa to Understand What You are Saying

Lifehacker.com interviewed robotics engineering research professor, Candace Sidner, for this article. Sidner offered insight into why voice assistants can sometimes be frustrating. “They are essentially programmed to do certain kinds of things, so they are breaking down utterances presented to them and then doing a search on the web.” 

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