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Towards One-Dollar Robots: An Integrated Design and Fabrication Strategy for Electromechanical Systems

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 December 2020

Wenzhong Yan*
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Ankur Mehta
Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, USA, E-mail:
*Corresponding author. E-mail:


To improve the accessibility of robotics, we propose a design and fabrication strategy to build low-cost electromechanical systems for robotic devices. Our method, based on origami-inspired cut-and-fold and E-textiles techniques, aims at minimizing the resources for robot creation. Specifically, we explore techniques to create robots with the resources restricted to single-layer sheets (e.g., polyester film) and conductive sewing threads. To demonstrate our strategy’s feasibility, these techniques are successfully integrated into an electromechanical oscillator (about 0.40 USD), which can generate electrical oscillation under constant-current power and potentially be used as a simple robot controller in lieu of additional external electronics.

Research Article
© The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press

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