Designing a Human-Inspired Grasper for Strawberry Picking


This project proposes a two-pronged soft robotic actuator with a clasping device to mimic human picking techniques in order to harvest strawberries without bruising them. Different latching mechanisms are investigated. The overall force capabilities of the design are evaluated to find a solution that maximizes contact between the gripper and berry while evenly distributing force across the surface of the berry to minimize damage.

Additional Resources

  • Choi, H., & Koç, M. (2006). Design and feasibility tests of a flexible gripper based on inflatable rubber pockets. International Journal of Machine Tools and Manufacture, 46(12-13), 1350-1361.
  • Mazzolai, B., Margheri, L., Cianchetti, M., Dario, P., & Laschi C. (2012) Soft-robotic arm inspired by the octopus: II. From artificial requirements to innovative technological solutions. Bioinspiration & Biomimetics, 7(2).
  • Schmidt, T., Lemaitre, C., Haase, W., & Sobek, W. (2007) Vacuumatics – Bauen mit Unterdruck [Vacuumatics – deflated forms of construction]. Detail, 10, 1148-1159.

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Meet the Researchers


Kexiong Wu
Weilun Zhang
Qichao Zheng
Christopher Keown

UC San Diego Graduate Program

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