The science & engineering of
dynamic & dexterous movement
Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, UC San Diego
(PI) Nick Gravish


I am interested in movement dynamics in biology and robotics. I am driven by developing new methods for analysis and generation of locomotion using tools from robotics, computer vision, and physics.


  • Postdoctoral scholar at Harvard University (2013 - 2016)
    • School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
    • Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology
    • Advisers: Robert J. Wood and Stacey A. Combes
  • Ph.D. in Physics at Georgia Tech (2008 - 2013)
    • Thesis: Collective dynamics of active and passive granular media
    • Minor: Mechanics of materials
    • Adviser: Daniel I. Goldman
  • B.S. in Physics at UC Santa Barbara (2001 - 2005)
    • Undergraduate Research Honors, 2004 & 2005


Glenna Clifton


Glenna comes to the gravishlab with a background in physics and organismal biomechanics. Glenna is studying the dynamics and control of high-speed legged locomotion in small insects (ants) to better understand the limitations of legged locomotion in small-scale systems.


Daniel Ortiz

Physics of soft-robot locomotion on sandy terrain.

Dennis Wu

Flapping-wing fluid mechanics of compliant actuators.

Shivam Chopra

Shivam is working on self-excited piezoelectric actuators for robust and multi-modal (swimming, running, flying) locomotion in insect scale robots.

Mingsong Jiang

Jason (Minsong) Jiang is a masters student investigating mechanical designs for dynamic, resonantly actuated, flapping wing microrobots.


Jeremy Lu

Siming Deng

Optimal control and path-planning for insect flight in complex environments.

Jhonathan Bituin

Jhonathan is working with Daniel Ortiz on locomotion physics of soft-robots on sandy terrain.