Research on learning materials gets attention in media
The research of Arri Priimägi (Tampere University), Olli Ikkala (Aalto University) and their research group has been acknowledged nationally and internationally. The Finnish newspaper Aamulehti wrote on how researchers have been able to train inanimate matter to learn like a dog . The results are also gaining a wider audience internationally and not only among scientist reading the journal Matter where the research results were originally published. The scientific breakthrough of teaching an inanimate object to move without using computer programming is showcased in the Independent. Beyond moving, the piece of plastic is able to recognise and respond in different ways to different wavelengths of light, which could have applications in robotics.
Soft robotics is an emerging field responding to the needs for more delicate ways of grabbing and moving, but also to produce lighter and smaller robots not dependent on heavy batteries or electrical cords. Photonics technologies and using light as the source of power also enables miniaturization of robots.
Read the story in Aamulehti (in Finnish)
Read the story in The Independent
Read the Aalto University press release
Read the research article Associative Learning by Classical Conditioning in Liquid Crystal Network Actuators in Matter