Po-Yen's work focuses on the tight integration of actuation, sensing, and wireless communication capabilities into robotic bodies, enabling the development of new-generation soft robots with multiple built-in functionalities. The integration of functional nanomaterials (especially 2D materials) into soft matter allows for the fabrication of soft robotic materials with required multifunctionality and reconfigurability. Po-Yen and his lab has developed strategies to integrate a wide range of 2D materials with various soft matter, including a post-stabilization approach to produce reconfigurable and multifunctional metallic backbones (e.g., Pt-elastomer) for the fabrication of origami robots with built-in strain sensing and wireless communication capabilities. Compared with traditional robotic materials (papers and elastomers), the soft robots with Pt-based bodies demonstrated distinct capabilities without the needs of external electronics, such as built-in strain sensing, and wireless communication.
About Po-Yen Chen
Po-Yen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the National University of Singapore. He completed his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was awarded a Hibbitt Independent Postdoctoral Fellowship from Brown University. He was also awarded the AME Young Investigator Award in Singapore and the AIChE-SLS Outstanding Young Principal Investigator Award in 2019. He aims to build a multidisciplinary research group that focuses mechanically patterned 2D materials that are capable of undergoing large and reversible stretching and deformations for the fabrication of stretchable electronics and smart soft robotics.