Graduate Research Assistant
Emily is pursuing a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at WSU with a focus on bioinspired tunably compliant soft actuators for medical applications. She also earned her B.S. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering at WSU, with research on variable stiffness structures for soft robotics applications. Since childhood, she has had a passion for understanding how things work, so she set her heart on engineering at age 9.
Emily hopes to contribute to the advancement of robotics technology while she works toward her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering at WSU. She also enjoys teaching college math and engineering courses where she can inspire the next generation of engineers.
In her free time, Emily enjoys playing the piano, participating in church activities, and playing sports.
Emily’s research focuses on the design, modeling, and control of soft robotic structures and actuators. Her research experience includes:
- Shape memory alloys
- Pneumatic actuation
- Materials characterization
- Soft robotic structure design and control
- Mechanical/electrical system modeling
- Finite element analysis
- Soft Robotics Learning Module for introducing topics of design and fabrication of soft robots to students of all ages.
- Modeling a Soft Robotic Element with Selectable Bending Axes.
- Machine Learning for Robot Pose Estimation.
- Adjustable Gear Assembly for increasing speed of line-tracking robot.
- E. A. Allen, L. D. Taylor, and J. P. Swensen, “Smart material composites for discrete stiffness materials,” Smart Materials and Structures, vol. 28, no. 7, p. 074007, Jun. 2019.
- E. A. Allen and J. P. Swensen, “Directional stiffness control through geometric patterning and localized heating of fields metal lattice embedded in silicone,” Actuators, vol. 7, no. 4, p. 80, Nov. 2018.
Refereed Conference Articles
- E. A. Allen and J. P. Swensen, “Design of a Highly-Maneuverable Pneumatic Soft Actuator Driven by Intrinsic SMA Coils (PneuSMA Actuator),” in Proc. IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS2020), Las Vegas, NV, (In-press).
- E. A. Allen and J. P. Swensen, “Controlling the Rotational DOF of Laminar Jamming Structures,” in Proc. ASME 2020 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems (SMASIS2020), Irvine, CA, (In-press).
- E. A. Allen, B. C. Townsend, and J. P. Swensen, “Configuration Modeling of a Soft Robotic Element with Selectable Bending Axes,” in Proc. IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS2019), Macau, China, Nov. 2019.
- E. A. Allen and J. P. Swensen, “Versatile Layering Approach to Pneumatic Soft Actuator Fabrication,” in Proc. ASME 2019 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems (SMASIS2019), Louisville, KY, 2019, p. V001T01A001.
- E. A. Allen, L. D. Taylor, and J. P. Swensen, “Smart material composites for discrete stiffness materials,” in Proc. ASME 2018 Conference on Smart Materials, Adaptive Structures and Intelligent Systems (SMASIS2018), San Antonio, TX, 2018, p. V002T06A015.
Thesis & Dissertation
- E. A. Allen. Variable Stiffness Structures Via Mechanics Modification and Antagonistic Actuation in Soft Robotic Materials. Master’s thesis, Washington State University, 2020.
- E. A. Allen. Design and Modeling of a PneuSMA Soft Robotic Catheter Device Using Resistance-Based Modeling of Nitinol Springs. Ph.D. dissertation, Washington State University, 2022.
- [ENGR 107] Introductory Mathematics for Engineering Applications: Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Spring 2022
- [ENGR 101] Success in Engineering: Fall 2021, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Spring 2022
- [ME 212] Dynamics: Summer 2019, Spring 2020, Summer 2020
- [ME 313] Engineering Analysis: Summer 2021
- [ME 306] Thermal and Fluids Laboratory: Summer 2019, (TA Spring 2019)
- [MATH 172] Calculus II: (TA Fall 2017)
- [MIRA Program] Introductory Mathematics for STEM Applications: Summer 2021