Dr Sajeeva Abeywardena
Postdoctoral Researcher in Robotics
Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering, Monash University, Australia
Bachelor of Mechatronic Engineering (First Class Hons.), University of Adelaide, Australia
Bachelor of Mathematical and Computer Science, University of Adelaide, Australia
I am currently a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Human Augmentation and Interactive Robotics (HAIR) Lab, Centre for Advanced Robotics, Queen Mary University of London working on the EPSRC project ‘Automatic Posture and Balance Support of Supernumerary Robotic Limbs’. Prior to joining HAIR, I was a Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Human Robotics Group (HRG), Imperial College London involved in the EU Horizon 2020 frameworks CONBOTS and NIMA. In the CONBOTS project I developed passive haptic mechanisms to explore Human-Human interaction whilst in the NIMA project I explored augmenting human motion capabilities with supernumerary limbs with a focus on balance control. Before Imperial, I was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Bristol Robotics Laboratory, UK involved in the EU Horizon 2020 Project SMARTsurg. In this role, I investigated the use of anthropomorphism in the design and control of surgical instruments for master-slave Robot-Assisted Minimally Invasive Surgery. My PhD studies were conducted in the Laboratory for Motion Generation and Analysis, Monash University where I conducted a theoretical investigation into a novel six-dof parallel mechanism and an experimental investigation into its suitability to be utilised as a force feedback haptic device.
My research aim is to develop technology for the benefit and advancement of society; specifically, applications with humans in the loop. Concurrently, I believe that the use of fundamental mechanism theory and mathematics is imperative to the development of elegant solutions to complex engineering problems. As such, my interest lies in utilising my expertise in mechanism theory and motion analysis to investigate and develop mechanisms for physical Human-Robot Interaction. Through my current position in HAIR; I am exploring my research ambitions by understanding the principles of human motion from a geometric, kinematic, dynamic and neuromechanic perspective to design and control Supernumerary Robotic Limbs that assist with human balance, posture and ergonomics.