ROBOTICS FOR REGAINING MOTION
Alejandro F. Azocar is a Mechanical Engineering Ph.D. student in the Neurobionics Lab at the University of Michigan, where he is developing an open-source robotic leg prosthesis. Alejandro holds a B.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering from Texas A&M University and an M.S. degree in Biomedical Engineering from Northwestern University. His unique interdisciplinary engineering education provides the platform for his diverse research interests: mechatronics, system dynamics, controls, human-machine interaction, and biomechanics—with applications in human rehabilitation and augmentation. Today’s passive prostheses often lead to chronic joint problems; envisioning a world in which differences do not constitute disability, Alejandro develops robotic prostheses for amputees that align with humans’ natural walking patterns.
As an undergraduate, Alejandro worked in the Land, Air, and Space Robotics Lab; Vehicle Systems and Control Lab; and the A&M Bipedal Experimental Robotics Lab. He also completed six internships at NASA’s Johnson Space Center. While earning his master’s degree, he joined the Center for Bionic Medicine at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab.
In 2015, Alejandro received the Sigma Gamma Tau Ammon S. Andes National Award, recognizing him as the top aerospace engineering student in the United States. He is an NSF Graduate Research Fellow and a GEM Associate Fellow.