My previous research focused on surface science and interfacial phenomena. Particularly, I was interested in fabrication of bio-inspired micropatterned polymeric systems with controlled adhesion, friction, and wetting. I have also experience in development of smart functional systems based on stimuli-responsive materials such as liquid crystal elastomers. My current research focuses on application of stimuli-responsive materials for the development of new generation of mobile robots at different scales to be employed in emerging biomedical technologies.
PhD: Chemical Engineering (Nanotechnology) from University of Waterloo, Canada, 2017
MASc: Chemical Engineering (Nanotechnology) from University of Waterloo, Canada, 2012
BSc: Chemical Engineering from Sharif University of Technology, Iran, 2009
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, National Acad Sciences, 2020 (article)
Untethered dynamic shape programming and control of soft materials have significant applications in technologies such as soft robots, medical devices, organ-on-a-chip, and optical devices. Here, we present a solution to remotely actuate and move soft materials underwater in a fast, efficient, and controlled manner using photoresponsive liquid crystal gels (LCGs). LCG constructs with engineered molecular alignment show a low and sharp phase-transition temperature and experience considerable density reduction by light exposure, thereby allowing rapid and reversible shape changes. We demonstrate different modes of underwater locomotion, such as crawling, walking, jumping, and swimming, by localized and time-varying illumination of LCGs. The diverse locomotion modes of smart LCGs can provide a new toolbox for designing efficient light-fueled soft robots in fluid-immersed media.
Our goal is to understand the principles of Perception, Action and Learning in autonomous systems that successfully interact with complex environments and to use this understanding to design future systems