Donald Lab Graphic

MEMS Movies

Most Donald Lab MEMS movies are now available on our YouTube channel.

Also provided below are movies of our MEMS devices and MEMS microrobots. The devices, and what you see in the movies, are described in our papers, which are available online, and, somewhat more telegraphically, on these webpages.

All movies on this site are copyrighted © by The Donald Laboratory at Duke University (1990-2017).

All Rights Reserved, All Wrongs Reversed.

An Untethered, Electrostatic, Globally-Controllable MEMS Micro-Robot

We present a steerable, electrostatic, untethered, MEMS micro-robot, with dimensions of 60 m by 250 m by 10 m. This micro-robot is 1 to 2 orders of magnitude smaller in size than previous micro-robotic systems. The device consists of a curved, cantilevered steering arm, mounted on an untethered scratch drive actuator. These two components are fabricated monolithically from the same sheet of conductive polysilicon, and receive a common power and control signal through a capacitive coupling with an underlying electrical grid. All locations on the grid receive the same power and control signal, so that the devices can be operated without knowledge of their position on the substrate and without constraining rails or tethers.


Supporting material:
New microrobot papers and videos
Press Release
Microrobot Ballet Video
Microassembly Video
Donald Lab Graphic 1. Streaming video: Inaugural Lecture of the MIT Nanotechnology Public Lecture Series (April 2007). (Announcement)
Donald Lab Graphic 2. Supplementary material is available for the paper:
B. R. Donald, C. Levey, C. McGray, I. Paprotny, and D. Rus, "An Untethered, Electrostatic, Globally-Controllable MEMS Micro-Robot", Journal of Micro-Electromechanical Systems, 2006; 15(1): 1-15. [Supplementary material]
Donald Lab Graphic 3. Untethered Scratch Drive Actuators
Papers: IEEE MEMS 2003, ISRR 03, JMEMS 03
Donald Lab Graphic 4. Theory of Manipulation and Control for Massively Parallel Microfabricated Actuator Arrays
Papers: IEEE MEMS 94, IJRR 99, etc
Donald Lab Graphic 5. Thermal-Biomorph/Electrostatic Organic Ciliary Array (the actuators)
Papers: IJRR 99, JMEMS 99, IEEE ICRA 2000, etc
Donald Lab Graphic 6. Thermal-Biomorph/Electrostatic Organic Ciliary Array (the array manipulates parts)
Papers: IJRR 99, JMEMS 99, IEEE ICRA 2000, etc
Donald Lab Graphic 7.
Rotating a chip in a skewed squeeze field (9x)
Quadrilateral-shaped chip in a unit squeeze field (9x).
Square-shaped chip in a unit squeeze field (9x).
Controlled translations and rotations of a chip (9x)
Donald Lab Graphic 11. View of the chip from a distance (9x).
Donald Lab Graphic 12. Closeup of array cilia
Donald Lab Graphic 7. Single-Crystal Silicon Microfabricated Actuator Array
Papers: IEEE MEMS 94, IJRR 99, etc
Coming soon: The movies listed above in a variety of formats in the MEMS movie directory.

These videos may not be used for commercial or for-profit purposes. All movies Copyright © Bruce Donald and his co-workers (see the corresponding papers for dates and precise lists of co-authors). Enjoy!