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Seminar Series in Physical Artificial Intelligence (PAI)

Online Archiv

19. January 2023

Empa Dübendorf and Online


 No material leak, large-scale (even roll-to-roll), and mold-free near net-shaping of advanced ceramics is possible


Speaker: Ozge Akbulut, Associate Professor at Sabancı University, Istanbul


!! Join us online: Here. Passcode: 186405



In product design, when we need long-term use, high thermal stability, high strength, and resistance to chemicals, we usually end up in a materials selection region that is covered by ceramics. On the other hand, these properties that single out ceramics for "extreme applications" are obstacles to conventional manufacturing methods, and most of the time, the uncomfortable outcome is settling for either a sub-optimal material or shape. At present, we do not have cost- and energy-effective, standard processing routes for ceramics that utilize current setups for rapid prototyping, and manufacturing in low/high numbers. There is a clear need for alternative methods that are specifically designed for ceramics.


We generate self-standing doughs of advanced ceramics that can be shaped by hand, and via traditional and laser machining at the green state. We design particle-specific polymeric additives that homogeneously coagulate ceramic suspensions through polymer bridging, imparting a clay-like rheology to the suspensions of zirconia, alumina, magnesia and many other technologically relevant ceramic systems. Starting from a self-standing structure that can withstand machining forces enables the exploitation of existing setups for machining of metals. The additive content in these formulations is less than 2 wt. %; the formulation can be reused, and the products reach 99.5–99.9% of the theoretical density after sintering. Large-scale imprinting and injection molding are also applicable. This “no-material leak” route offers an unprecedented, cost-effective scheme for mass and low-number production of ceramics.


Roll-to-roll processing: https://vimeo.com/776127399

Milling: https://vimeo.com/756323910

Turning: https://vimeo.com/756325510


About the speaker



Ozge Akbulut is an Associate Professor at Sabancı University, Istanbul. She received her B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering at Sabancı University in 2004. Her PhD from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2009) focused on the cost-effective fabrication of biomolecular devices and surface science. She continued her studies as a post-doctoral fellow at Harvard University, (2009–2011) on developing tools/techniques for resource-limited settings. Her main research interests are the near-net fabrication of ceramics (both additive and subtractive) and silicone-based composites. She also co-founded a company, Surgitate, on the design and fabrication of tactile surgical training platforms, in 2014.



The seminar series in PAI is hosted by the Materials and Technology Centre of Robotics:


The Seminar is moderated by Mirko Kovac, Head of the Materials and Technology Center of Robotics at Empa.


The general guiding theme and vision of the new Empa Materials and Technology Centre of Robotics is to develop novel soft robotic systems for infrastructure maintenance and environmental monitoring. The main research method of the Centre is Physical Artificial Intelligence (PAI). Physical Artificial Intelligence (PAI) refers to the theory and practice of synthesizing lifelike robotic systems that are capable of performing tasks typically associated with intelligent organisms


The center is based on an institutional partnership between Imperial College London and the Empa. Research thrusts include aerial robotics platform development, soft robotics, material science and digital infrastructure systems.