Micro-/Nano-robots are artificial machines that can perform complex mechanical tasks at the length scale smaller than 1 mm. It consists of two main categories: 1) Untethered machines that have characteristic size smaller than 1 mm and are powered, actuated and controlled wirelessly by physical or chemical fields, for instance, magnetic micro-swimmers with rotating flagella or beating cilia to swim in fluids, and Janus micro-motors generate asymmetric chemical field to propel; 2) Large-scale robotic systems with the end-effectors that are capable of precise motion at nano- to micro-meter regime. For example, micro-manipulators for single cells or inside an SEM (Scanning Electron Microscope). Micro-/nano-robots hold great potential in numerous applications, including targeted drug delivery and minimally-invasive surgery in medicine, single cell manipulation in biology, and highly-parallel microfabrication and assembly in industry. Despite rapid advances of the field in recent years, many technical challenges still remain, for instance, the schemes for high-energy-density wireless power transfer through the human body, new materials for efficient micro-actuators and sensors, fabrication and assembly methods for designer 3D micro-/nano-structures, and intelligent control methods for an individual robot or swarm robots.
The purpose of this special issue is to collect the latest development in micro-/nano-robotics and their applications. We welcome original manuscripts with new designs, fabrication methods, actuation and sensing mechanisms, control schemes, as well as applications in the field of micro-/nano-robotics. Review articles summarizing the current state-of-the-art in the field are also welcome.
The exploration of surfaces, interfaces, nanostructures and thin films using:
- Janus micro-/nano-motors
- Low-Reynolds hydrodynamics and propulsion
- Wireless micro-actuation
- Friction and micro-manipulations
- 3D Micro-/nano-fabrication methods
- Small-scale sensors for robotics
- Self-assembly and assembly at small scales
- Swarm micro-robotics
- Intelligent control of small-scale robots
- Mechanical systems and control systems for micro-manipulations
- Applications of micro-/nano-robotics
Tian Qiu, University of Stuttgart, Germany
Prof. Longqiu Li, Harbin Institute of Technology, China
Manuscripts should be no more than 25 pages of A4 paper (including figures and tables). Text should be printed on one side only and be double-spaced. Interested authors are welcome to email their tentative titles and abstracts to firstname.lastname@example.org. Full electronic manuscripts (MS-Word, or PDF file) should be submitted via the NPE online system; please select ‘Special Issue on Flexible MEMS Sensors and Systems’. All manuscripts must be prepared using the Guide for Authors and will be reviewed by at least two referees.