Thank You:

The organisers would like to thank all invited speakers and attendees of the workshop, we enjoyed it very much.

Please be aware of our upcoming summer school on electronic skin from 11-14th of september in Catania. More information will be available soon on the CONTEST website.

For any comments please contact Philipp Mittendorfer ...

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Workshop on Electronic Skin Group Picture



hrpII structure7 units V2 fingers blue3D recon loop

Fig. 1:   Self-organization of skin on robots     Fig. 2:   Easy design of customized skin patches     Fig. 3:   3D Shape reconstruction     (source: www.hex-o-skin.eu)

Date and Location:

06th May 2013, Karlsruhe Germany, ICRA 2013


This full day workshop will bring together experts in flexible electronics, sensors, system integration and robotics from academia and industry. It will cover critical aspects of flexible electronics towards an electronically enhanced smart skin.

Motivation and Objectives:

Robotics has undergone major transformations, from a largely industrial focus to the challenging dynamics of human world. Many issues need to be overcome to create robots that share the space with humans and safely interact with them, providing services in manufacturing, entertainment, education, healthcare and assistance. One major challenge to address is the physical interaction of robots with objects and humans, for which the sense of touch is critically important. This involves addressing technological solutions such as electronic skin, as well as determining suitable sensorimotor strategies to use them.

Bendable and conformable robotic skin will enable gathering “contact information” from large areas simultaneously, creating opportunities to extend the cognitive capabilities of robots, and in human-environment interfaces. Early attempts to achieve conformable electronic systems primarily followed the flexible printed circuit boards (PCB) route, building skin-like patches for robots. In parallel to the limited degree of bendability of current PCB (due to the thickness, the size and number of off-the-shelf electronic components), flexible PCB based solutions have been proposed to cover robot body parts like back and arms. The research community is looking forward to new possibilities offered by advances in flex-chip, printable electronics, micro-/nano-structures such as micro-/nano-wires based electronics and sensing, in the fast emerging field of flexible and large areas electronics. The organic as well as inorganic (silicon) semiconductor based flexible electronics hold a great promise for robotics, as it will enable solutions like ultra-thin and light weight electronic skin. Wearable and disposable electronics will enable robots to work close with human in a safe and nature manner. It is foreseeable that such advancements will greatly advance several fields such as service robots, industrial co-worker robots and domestic robots.

In the workshop silicon and organic materials based solutions will be described, yielding systems with theadvantages of both, and aiming to push research frontiers towards i) multifunctional electronics, ii) bendable and stretchable electronic systems over large areas, and iii) integration of organic and inorganic materials based components onto the same substrate. Ways to efficiently organize and process data from a distributed sensor system like electronic skin will be discussed.

© ICRA 2013 Workshop on Research Frontiers in Electronic Skin Technology