Bahareh Behkam — 2004-05 Fellow
The goal of this project is to develop a microrobot which can travel to currently inaccessible parts of the human body and perform user directed tasks such as highly localized drug delivery and screening for diseases that are in their very early stages. Miniature, safe and energy efficient propulsion systems hold the key to maturing this technology but they pose significant challenges. We propose a new type of propulsion inspired by the motility mechanism of bacteria with peritrichous flagellation. This research work would investigate two different concepts:
Biomimetic swimming microrobot: The design and microfabrication of a completely mechanical propulsion system inspired by motility of the bacteria.
Hybrid swimming microrobot: Utilizing a large number of mutated bacteria for propulsion of the abiotic body of the robot.
These robots are intended to swim in stagnation/low velocity biofluid. Potential target regions to use these robots include eyeball cavity, cerebrospinal fluid and the urinary system.