Machine Intelligence Laboratory

Cambridge University Department of Engineering

Fabio Giardina Fabio Giardina

Position: PhD Student

E-mail: ffg20 [AT]

Office: BN3-02

Thesis Title: On the discretisation of locomotion dynamics: Impulse- and shape-based modelling for hopping robots

Supervisor: Dr. Fumiya Iida


I received my B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in mechanical engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH), Switzerland, in 2010, and 2012, respectively. I am currently working toward the doctoral degree in the Biologically Inspired Robotics Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.

Research Interests

I am interested in the effect of morphology on the dynamics of locomotion in animals and robots. My approach is largely theoretical, but I have built various robots to test my hypotheses experimentally. Have a look at our YouTube channel


Publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals

Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2018). Efficiency and stability of impulse-actuated locomotion robots with strictly convex foot shapes. IEEE Transactions on Robotics. Accepted.
Saar, K. A., Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2018). Model-Free Design Optimisation of a Hopping Robot and Its Competition with a Human Designer. IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters.
Hughes, J., Culha, U., Giardina, F., Guenther, F., Rosendo, A., & Iida, F. (2016). Soft manipulators and grippers: A review. Frontiers in Robotics and AI, 3, 69.
Hunt, J., Giardina, F., Rosendo, A., & Iida, F. (2016). Improving efficiency for an open-loop-controlled locomotion with a pulsed actuation. IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics, 21(3), 1581-1591.

Peer-reviewed conference proceedings

Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2016, October). Discrete Foot Shape Changes Improve Dynamics of a Hopping Robot. In International Symposium on Experimental Robotics (pp. 113-122). Springer.
Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2016, June). Simulation of forward hopping dynamics in robots and animals using a template with a circular foot and impulsive actuation. In Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics (BioRob), 2016 6th IEEE International Conference on (pp. 7-12). IEEE.
Gunther, F., Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2014, May). Self-stable one-legged hopping using a curved foot. In Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2014 IEEE International Conference on (pp. 5133-5138). IEEE.

Contributions to books

Culha, U., Hughes, J., Rosendo, A., Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2017). Design Principles for Soft-Rigid Hybrid Manipulators. In Soft Robotics: Trends, Applications and Challenges (pp. 87-94). Springer International Publishing.

Contributions to international conferences

Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2017). Towards limits of energy efficiency in legged locomotion. Dynamic Walking Conference.

General contributions to science

Culha, U., Giardina, F., (2015). Hot Glue Kit.
Rosendo, A., Hughes, J., Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2016). News and Views: Soft Solutions for Hard Problems. IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine, 23(3), 125-127.

Under review

Giardina, F., & Iida, F. (2017). Collision-based energetic analysis of rolling and hopping over obstacles. PLOS ONE. Under review.