hawDr Helge A Wurdemann, Dipl.-Ing., PhD
Lecturer in Medical Devices
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University College London

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I am a roboticist and Lecturer in Medical Devices. The research interests of my #SoftHapticsLab include the design and application of bio-inspired, soft and stiffness-controllable medical and haptic devices and robotic art. Meet the #SoftHapticsTeam!

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Short bio: I graduated in Electrical Engineering (Mechatronics) from the Leibniz University of Hanover, Germany in 2008 and completed a PhD in Mechatronics and Robotics at King’s College London, UK in 2008. Towards the end of my PhD, I started to work as a post-doctoral research associate and project manager of EU project STIFF-FLOP coordinating research activities of a multidisciplinary consortium of 12 partners with a total budget of €7.35m. At King’s College London, I was Head of the Soft Robotics Lab and Haptic Lab within the Centre for Robotics Research. In January 2016, I joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University College London as a Lecturer in Medical Devices. My Soft Haptics Lab is within the Biomechanical Research Group. I lead the robotics activities for UCL MechEng and represent the Department within the UCL Robotics Institute. Further, I am a member of the UCL Institute of Healthcare Engineering.

Research highlights: During my academic career, I have performed research in the areas of medical devices: For applications in Minimally Invasive Surgery, I created haptic solutions, an innovative soft, stiffness-controllable mechanism for surgical devices as well as a number of stiffness sensors for soft tissue palpation. My research has resulted in over 45 publications in high-impact journals and presentations at international premium conferences in robotics. Three scientific contribution have been acknowledged by the IOPscience Smart Materials and Structures journal (Highlights of 2014), the Workshop on Computer/Robot Assisted Surgery (Best Poster Award 2016, Pisa, Italy) and the Hamlyn Symposium on Medical Robotics (Top 10 Best Posters, London, UK). I have been Co-I on EU projects STIFF-FLOP and 4×3. Within the new EU Research and Innovation programme Horizon 2020, I was successfully awarded a grant within the “Factories of the Future” call. I have also been involved in organising committees of several international conferences and workshops (at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, European Robotics Forum and the Royal Academy of Engineering) and have been invited to demonstrate my research, e.g., at the Science Museum in London, TechXLR8, the Schunk Expert Days, the British Science Festival. In March 2015, I organised the 2015 Innovative Surgical Robotics Forum in London together with Innovate UK (RAS SIG) and the EC inviting 4 leading EU projects and distinguished speakers to bring research together with some entrepreneurial energy.

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