Katherine Kuchenbecker Receives NSF CAREER AWARD

May 28, 2009

Katherine Kuchenbecker, Skirkanich Assistant Professor of Innovation in the department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, has received a prestigious NSF CAREER award on her work, "Haptography: Capturing and Recreating the Rich Feel of Real Surfaces." The CAREER award is the NSF’s most prestigious award in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.

Kuchenbecker earned her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University and was a postdoc at Johns Hopkins University. Her reserch focuses on the design, control, and performance of robotic systems that enable a user to touch virtual objects and distant environments as though they were real and within reach.  These haptic interfaces combine electromechanical sensors and actuators with high-speed computer control to fool the human sense of touch. By studying applications such as robot-assisted surgery, smart prosthetics, educational computer games, and driver assistance, Kuchenbecker seeks to improve our understanding of haptic feedback and uncover new opportunities for its use in interactions between humans, computers, and machines.

To read more about Kuchenbecker and her research, please visit the Penn Engineering Haptics Group.