Design of a micro-gripper and an ultrasonic manipulator for handling micron sized objects

F. Beyeler, D. J. Bell, B. J. Nelson, Y. Sun, A. Neild, S. Oberti, J. Dual

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperOther

33 Citations (Scopus)


This work reports on a system consisting of a MEMS (microelectromechanical system) gripper and an ultrasonic manipulator. The gripper is electrostatically actuated and includes an integrated force sensor measuring the gripping force. The device is monolithically fabricated using a silicon-on-insulator (SOI) fabrication process. The resolution of the force sensor is in the sub-micronewton range and, therefore, provides feedback of the forces that dominate the micromanipulation processes. A MEMS ultrasonic device is described which aligns small objects such as biological cells prior to manipulation with the gripper. The concept is demonstrated with polymer spheres, glass spheres and Hela cancer cells, thus providing a useful tool in micro-robotics and biological research.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2006 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, IROS 2006
PublisherIEEE, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)142440259X, 9781424402595
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes
EventIEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems 2006 - Beijing, China
Duration: 9 Oct 200615 Oct 2006 (Proceedings)


ConferenceIEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems 2006
Abbreviated titleIROS 2006
Internet address


  • Force feedback
  • Hela cells
  • Microgripper
  • Ultrasonic positioning

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