David J. Cappelleri
Associate Professor

David J. Cappelleri is an Associate Professor in the School of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University. Prior to joining Purdue, he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, NJ. Prof. Cappelleri founded the Multi-Scale Robotics & Automation Lab that performs cutting-edge research on robotic and automation systems at various length scales: macro-scale (cm to m), meso-scale (~100’s of um to a few mm’s), micro-scale (10’s of um to 100’s of um), and nano-scale (nm). Prof. Cappelleri is a recipient of the Villanova University Engineering Alumni Society John J. Gallen Memorial Award (2013), National Science Foundation CAREER Award (2012), Harvey N. Davis Distinguished Assistant Professor Teaching Award (2010) and the Association for Lab Automation (ALA) Young Scientist Award (2009). He was selected for and participated in the National Academy of Engineering Frontiers on Engineering Education Symposium in 2011 and the German-American Frontiers of Engineering Symposium in 2015 that was jointly sponsored by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and the National Academy of Engineering.  Prof. Cappelleri is an elected member of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) Technical Committee on Micro/Nano Robotics and Automation, the IEEE RAS Technical Committee on Mechanisms and Design, the ASME Design Engineering Division Mechanisms & Robotics Committee, and the ASME Design Engineering Division Micro/Nano-Systems Technical Committee. He is also an associate editor for the Journal of Micro-Bio Robotics (JMBR) and the IEEE Robotics & Automation Letters (RA-L) . Prof. Cappelleri received the B.S. and M.S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Villanova University, and The Pennsylvania State University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics.

Lab Members

Postdoctoral Researchers

PhD Students

Georges Adam
Ph.D. Student, Mechanical Engineering


Arindam Chowdhury
Ph.D. Candidate, Mechanical Engineering

Micro aerial vehicles; assistive robotics

Benjamin Johnson
Ph.D. Candidate, Mechanical Engineering

Mobile Microrobot Swarms

Daniel McArthur
Ph.D. Candidate, Mechanical Engineering

Novel micro aerial vehicle designs and control

Ben Abruzzo
Ph.D. Candidate, Mechanical Engineering (Stevens Institute of Technology)

Heterogeneous mobile robot teams

Masters Students

Ze An
M.S. Mechanical Engineering

Mobile Robotics

Chenghao Bi
M.S. Mechanical Engineering

Mobile Microrobotics

Yang Ding
M.S. Student, Mechanical Engineering

Surgical Robotics

Bo Ji
M.S. Mechanical Engineering


Che Kun Law
M.S. Student, Mechanical Engineering

Mobile Robotics for Agricultural Applications

Undergraduate Students

Nathan Esantsi
B.S. Mechanical Engineering

Mobile Microrobotics

Matt Lyng
B.S. Mechanical Engineering


Zhangjian Ouyang
B.S. Mechanical Engineering

Robotics and Automation

Lab Alumni

Postdoctoral Researchers

  • Sagar Chowdhury
    Current Position: Caterpillar
  • Maria Guix Noguera
    Current Position: Juan de la Cierva PostDoc Fellow, Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), Barcelona, Spain

PhD Students

  • Jermaine Chambers
  • Zhenbo Fu
  • Wuming Jing (2013)
    Current Position: Assistant Professor, Lawrence Technological University
    Thesis Title: Towards Functional Magnetic Microrobotics
  • Yangbo Long (2014)
    Current Position: Siemens
    Thesis Title: Design, Modeling, and Control of an Overactuated Micro Aerial Vehicle

Masters Students

  • Shi Bai (2012)
    Current Position: Stevens Institute of Technology
    Thesis Title: Investigations on Lightweight SLAM Solutions for Mico Aerial Vehicles
  • Andreas Gelardos (2013)
    Thesis Title: MAV Platform Design, Analysis, and Control
  • Zekun Gong (2018)
  • Peter Jaron (2015)
  • Benjamin Johnson (2015)
    Current Position: PhD Student, Purdue University
    Thesis Title: Design of a Surgical Manipulator System for Lumbar Discectomy Procedures
  • Paras H. Patel (2012)
    Current Position: Siemens
    Thesis Title: Design and Control of a T-Quadrotor Micro Aerial Vehicle
  • Ganesh Ram Ramanujam Karthikeyan (2018)
    Current Position: Cummins Inc.
  • Joseph Seymour (2015)
  • Vinoth Venkatesan (2018)
    Current Position: The MathWorks, Inc.
    Thesis Title: Flexible automation for meso and micro-scale manipulation and assembly
  • Tianqi Ye (2018)

Undergraduate Students

  • Archit Agarawal
  • Karl Ang
  • Alex Calisto
  • Thomas Daily
  • Alessandro DiLeonardo
  • Andrew Domicolo
    Current Position: Foster Wheeler
  • Matt Edwards
    Current Position: Pratt & Whitney
  • Michael Fatovic
    Current Position: Jewel Precision
  • Evan Fisher
  • Kevin Girardi
  • Ateev Gupta
    Current Position: Intern at Apple Inc.
  • Patrick Hammer
    Current Position: Zodiac Aerospace
  • Christopher Harnack
  • Jianxiong Wang (2018)
    Current Position: Graduate Student, UCLA
  • David Kleszyk
  • Cara Koepele (2018)
    Current Position: General Motors
    Thesis Title: 3D-Printed Microswimmers with Nanostructures for Real-Time Color Tracking
  • Tyler Landers
  • Jason Lee
  • Sean Lyttle
    Current Position: ETH Zurich
  • Alfred Mayalu
    Current Position: Virginia Tech
  • Preethi Moorthy
  • Nick Pagano
    Current Position: Harrington Hoists
  • Sharon Rooker
  • Danielle Sack
  • Mark Schmidt
  • Stephanie Senkevich
  • Marshall Tatro
  • Nikolaos Vitoroulis
  • Bogdan Vlahov
    Current Position: Graduate Student, Georgia Tech
  • Ethan Wang
  • Jeremy Wang
    Current Position: University of Pennsylvania
  • Ellexi Wickstrom
  • Andrew Williams
  • Bixing Yan
  • Xingyu Zhou
  • Jahel Carrera Zuniga