Starfish Project: Acknowledgments, Author Contributions, and Citations


We would like to thank the Physics & Engineering Department at Washington and Lee University for providing the necessary funding to undertake this project. We would also like to thank Dave Pfaff, Garnett Byrd, and the Washington and Lee IQ Center for their help during our 3D printing and part design trials. Lastly, we would like to thank Professor Erickson for his continued help in making this robot move. From the brainstorming stages through the final presentation Professor Erickson’s constant feedback was vital to the work we’ve completed. 

Author Contributions:

Sarah Burd: 3D CAD modeling (feet, body, servo attachment), stringing the system, putting on fashion tape, weekly progress reports, future design


Michael Mercer: Foot design and sweep angle math, development of movement method ideas, helped with the circuit, weekly progress reports, future designs, filing 3D printed caps for assembly


Charley Colby: Circuit construction and schematic, movement method development, code help and troubleshooting, initial stringing design, filming and troubleshooting robot


Zoe Cass: Assistance with 3D modeling design, stringing the system, application of fashion tape, preliminary testing and troubleshooting of robot


FJ Hogg: Assisted brainstorming of iterations to body and feet, filming and troubleshooting robot, fashion tape stickiness testing, designing presentation and final deliverable website

Richie Manigault: Circuit construction, code


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Heydari, S., Johnson, A., Ellers, O., McHenry, M. J., & Kanso, E. (2020). Sea star
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M. Otake, Y. Kagami, M. Inaba, and H. Inoue (2002). Motion design of a starfish-shaped gel robot made of electro-active polymer gel. Intell. Auton. Syst. – IAS -6, vol. 40, no. 2, pp. 185–191, Aug. 2002.

Hu Jin, et al. (2014). Locomotion modeling of an actinomorphic soft robot actuated by SMA springs. 2014 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics, IEEE, 2014.

R. F. Shepherd et al. (2011). Multigait soft robot. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., vol. 108, no. 51, pp. 20400–20403, Dec. 2011.

Mao, S., Dong, E., Jin, H., Xu, M., Zhang, S., Yang, J., & Low, K. H. (2014). Gait
study and pattern generation of a starfishlike soft robot with flexible rays actuated by
SMAs. Journal of Bionic Engineering, 11(3), 400411.

Poungrat, A., & Maneewarn, T. (2017). A starfish inspired robot with multidirectional
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Zou, J., Yang, M., & Jin, G. (2020). A fiveway directional soft valve with a case study:
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