Abstract: Grand challenges facing human society in the 21st century mostly emerge at the interface between human and machines. To efficiently tackle these challenges, the development of future real-world technologies will depend strongly on our understanding of the principles underlying living systems and utilizing these capabilities in forward design of synthetic systems. In this talk, I will present our recent experimental and theoretical studies on emerging bioinspired systems including, Design and Manufacturing of, 1) Artificial Compound Eye Camera, 2) Arbitrary 3D Curvy Electronics, 3) Biohybrid Valveless Pump-bots and 4) Pump-bots with Flow Loop Feedback powered by engineered skeletal muscle. Underlying mechanics theories, design and fabrication approaches, potential biomedical applications, and the future of biohybrid designs will be discussed. The successful investigation of these systems will not only boost our capability in developing new materials, devices and robotics that possess unprecedented functions and capabilities, but also inspire new technology development for applications toward solving real world problems in health, medicine and robotics.
Bio: Dr. Zhengwei Li is currently a postdoctoral fellow, working with Prof. John A. Rogers in the Center for Bio-Integrated Electronics at Northwestern University, where he works on the wireless electronics manufacturing for healthcare applications. He also had previous postdoctoral research experience in biomanufacturing, working with Prof. Taher Saif in the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Li received his Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering in May 2017 from University of Colorado Boulder, where he won the Outstanding Dissertation Award (one recipient each year across all different engineering disciplines). His primary research interests includes design and fabrication of biohybrid robotics (“Bio-bots”), 3D curvy electronics and soft functional materials.