Liwei Lin in lab

Research Expertise and Interest

nanotechnology, MEMS (microelectromechanical systems), NEMS (nanoelectromechanical systems), design and manufacturing of microsensors, microactuators, development of micromachining processes, silicon surface/bulk micromachining, micromolding process

Research Description

MEMS (Microelectromechanical Systems); NEMS (Nanoelectromechanical Systems); Nanotechnology; design and manufacturing of microsensors and microactuators; development of micromachining processes by silicon surface/bulk micromachining; micro moulding process; mechanical issues in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) including heat transfer, solid/fluid mechanics and dynamics.

In the News

Bakar Fellows Program Names Seven New Spark Award Recipients

From artificial ligaments and a novel approach to cancer treatment to “soft” batteries and a way to give voice to silent speech, new innovations from UC Berkeley faculty are getting a big vote of support from the Bakar Fellows program. Seven faculty members have been selected to receive the 2022 Bakar Fellows Spark Award, which is designed to accelerate faculty-led research and produce tangible, positive societal impact through commercialization.

Slicing the Way to Wearable Sensor Prototypes

Engineers at UC Berkeley have developed a new technique for making wearable sensors that enables medical researchers to prototype test new designs much faster and at a far lower cost than existing methods.

Insect-sized robot navigates mazes with the agility of a cheetah

Many insects and spiders get their uncanny ability to scurry up walls and walk upside down on ceilings with the help of specialized sticky footpads that allow them to adhere to surfaces in places where no human would dare to go. Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley, have used the principle behind these some of these footpads, called electrostatic adhesion, to create an insect-scale robot that can swerve and pivot with the agility of a cheetah, giving it the ability to traverse complex terrain and quickly avoid unexpected obstacles.

You can’t squash this roach-inspired robot

If the sight of a skittering bug makes you squirm, you may want to look away — a new insect-sized robot created by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, can scurry across the floor at nearly the speed of a darting cockroach.

3D-Printed ‘Smart Cap’ Uses Electronics to Sense Spoiled Food

It might not be long before consumers can just hit “print” to create an electronic circuit or wireless sensor in the comfort of their homes. UC Berkeley engineers are expanding their portfolio of 3D printing technology to include electrical components, such as resistors, inductors, capacitors and integrated wireless electrical sensing systems.

New fiber nanogenerators could lead to electric clothing

In research that gives literal meaning to the term "power suit," UC Berkeley engineers have created energy-scavenging nanofibers that could one day be woven into clothing and textiles. The technology could eventually lead to wearable 'smart clothes' that can power hand-held electronics through ordinary body movements.

Featured in the Media

Please note: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or positions of UC Berkeley.
August 1, 2019
Shane McGlaun
A team of Berkeley researchers has developed a skittering robot that's modeled on a cockroach. Like the insect, it's tiny, fast, and can survive attempts to squish it. "Most of the robots at this particular small scale are very fragile," says mechanical engineering professor Liwei Lin, the senior author of the study. "If you step on them, you pretty much destroy the robot. ... We found that if we put weight on our robot, it still more or less functions." The ultimate goal for such robots is to put them to work on search and rescue missions in places where dogs or humans either can't fit, or where it may be too dangerous for them to go, says first author Yichuan Wu, who was a mechanical engineering graduate student working on the project through a partnership with the Tsinghua-Berkeley Shenzhen Institute. "For example, if an earthquake happens, it's very hard for the big machines, or the big dogs, to find life underneath debris, so that's why we need a small-sized robot that is agile and robust," he says. Link to video. For more on this, see our press release at Berkeley News. Another story on this topic appeared in One News Page (UPI).
December 20, 2018
Gelatin -- the substance that makes Jell-O jiggle -- is the magic ingredient in a new fuel catalyst developed by Berkeley researchers. Made with nanometer-thin sheets of metal carbide, the new catalyst offers a cheaper and more effective way of generating hydrogen fuel from water than the current best material -- platinum. "Platinum is expensive, so it would be desirable to find other alternative materials to replace it," says mechanical engineering professor Liwei Lin, the study's senior author. "We are actually using something similar to the Jell-O that you can eat as the foundation, and mixing it with some of the abundant earth elements to create an inexpensive new material for important catalytic reactions." This story originated at Berkeley News, and was reprinted in more than a dozen sources around the world, including Nanotechnology Now, Nanowerk, Before it's News, FARS News Agency (Iran), Archy Worldys, and World Industrial Reporter.
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