Perspective for soft robotics: The field's past and future

Falk Tauber, Marc P. Y. Desmulliez, Olivier Piccin, Adam A. Stokes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
16 Downloads (Pure)


Since its beginnings in the 1960s, soft robotics has been a steadily growing field that has enjoyed recent growth with the advent of rapid prototyping and the provision of new flexible materials. These two innovations have enabled the development of fully flexible and untethered soft robotic systems. The integration of novel sensors enabled by new manufacturing processes and materials shows promise for enabling the production of soft systems with ‘embodied intelligence’. Here, four experts present their perspectives for the future of the field of soft robotics based on these past innovations. Their focus is on finding answers to the questions of: how to manufacture soft robots, and on how soft robots can sense, move, and think. We highlight industrial production techniques, which are unused to date for manufacturing soft robots. They discuss how novel tactile sensors for soft robots could be created to enable better interaction of the soft robot with the environment. In conclusion this article highlights how embodied intelligence in soft robots could be used to make soft robots think and to make systems that can compute, autonomously, from sensory inputs.
Original languageEnglish
Article number035001
JournalBioinspiration and Biomimetics
Issue number3
Early online date3 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - May 2023


  • biomimetic
  • future challenges
  • perspectives
  • soft robotic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)


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