Prof. David Camarillo, Stanford
David Camarillo is an Assistant Professor of Bioengineering at Stanford University. He completed his undergraduate degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Princeton University, and his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at Stanford. Both his graduate work and industry experience with Intuitive Surgical and Hansen Medical were in the area of surgical robotics. Dr. Camarillo performed his postdoctoral research in Biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco in 2011. He is an expert in instrumentation and biomechanics whose research interests include medical technology design as it applies to mild traumatic brain injury and flexible robotics for cardiovascular therapy.

Model-less control for continuum manipulators in unstructured environments
Continuum manipulators are capable of navigating through unstructured environments such as a human body, where its flexible backbone allows it to safely conform around environment obstacles and constraints. Because these environmental disturbances can affect the configuration of the manipulator in an unknown and unpredictable manner, conventional kinematic and mechanics model-based control methods can be inaccurate and can lead to robot singularities and instabilities. We have developed a novel control method that uses local Jacobian estimation and convex optimization to control a continuum manipulator without using a model. We show that this method overcomes artificial singularities and instabilities that may otherwise occur using a model-based controller, and can be used in a variety of environmental constraints and obstacles without explicit knowledge of the environment. Model-less control provides a robust control strategy for continuum manipulators in unstructured environments, and offers a simple and effective alternative for controlling robot manipulators with complex kinematics and mechanics.

Relevant Publications
[1] M. Yip, D. Camarillo, "Model-less Feedback Control of Continuum Manipulators in Constrained Environments." IEEE Transactions on Robotics, Accepted Oct. 6, 2013. In Press.
[2] Camarillo DB, Carlson CR, Salisbury JK. “Configuration Tracking for Continuum Manipulators with Coupled Tendon Drive.” IEEE Transactions on Robotics. vol. 25, no. 4, pp 798-808. 2009.
[3] Camarillo DB, Milne CF, Carlson CR, Zinn MR, Salisbury JK. “Mechanics Modeling of Tendon Driven Continuum Manipulators.” IEEE Transactions on Robotics. vol. 24, no. 6, pp 1262-1273. 2008.