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  • 2019 - Present: Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • 2015 - 2019: B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
  • 2010 - 2014: B.S., Biological Sciences, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH


  • Ocular Therapeutic Delivery Through Real-time Endoscopic B-scan OCT-guided Tools and Robotic Assistance

Research Interests

  • Collaborative Surgical Robotics
  • Robot Design for Tasks with Micro-Anatomy



Education Information

  • 2016 - Present: PhD student, Mechanical Engineering, A.R.M.A. Laboratory, Vanderbilt University
  • 2015 - 2016: Research Fellow, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Harvard University
  • 2011 - 2015: B. Sc. in Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Research Interests

  • Design, Modelling, Control and Telemanipulation of Continuum Robots and Active Catheters
  • Sensing Modules and Situational Awareness Aids for Surgery and Manufacturing in Confined Spaces
  • Design of Biologically Inspired (Soft) Robots
  • Minimally Invasive Surgery


  • 2011-2015: United World Colleges (UWC) Davis Scholarship
  • 2016-2017: Vanderbilt Engineering Graduate Fellowship
  • 2018-2020: Vanderbilt Institute for Surgery and Engineering (VISE) Training Fellowship

Publications at ARMA Lab

Prior Publications

  • Holland, D., Abah, C., Velasco-Enriquez, M., Herman M., Bennett, G., Vela, E. and Walsh, C., "The Soft Robotics Toolkit: Strategies for Overcoming Obstacles to the Wide Dissemination of Soft-Robotic Hardware", IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine, Vol. 24, No. 1, pp. 57-64,DOI: 10.1109/MRA.2016.2639067, 2017.
  • Payne, C., Wamala, I., Abah, C., Thalhofer, T., Saeed, M., Bautisda-Salinas, D., Horvath, M., Vasilyev, N., Roche, E., Pigula, F. and Walsh, C., "An Implantable Extracardiac Soft Robotic Device for the Failing Heart: Mechanical Coupling and Synchronization", Soft Robotics Journal, Vol. 4, No. 3, pp. 241 - 250, DOI 0.1089/soro.2016.0076, 2017.
  • Payne, C.J., Wamala, I., Abah, C., Thalhofer, T., Saeed, M., Bautista-Salinas, D., Horvath, M.A., Vasilyev, N.V., Roche, E.T., Pigula, F.A. and Walsh, C.J., 2017, June. Wearable Soft Robotic Device Supports the Failing Heart in vivo. In The Hamlyn Symposium on Medical Robotics (p. 37).
  • Payne, C. , Wamala, I., Bautisda-Salinas, D., Saeed, M., Van Story, D., Thalhofer, T., Horvath, M., Abah, C., Pedro, J., Walsh, C., M., Vasilyev, "Soft robotic ventricular assist device with septal bracing for therapy of heart failure", Science Robotics, Vol. 2, No. 12, DOI: 10.1126/scirobotics.aan6736, 2017.

Contact Information

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  • https://www.linkedin.com/in/coletteabah/

Rashid Yasin

Education Information


Master of Science, Mechanical Engineering, University of California Los Angeles 2014
Bachelor of Science, Engineering Sciences, Harvard College 2012

Contact Information
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Current Projects
Robotic Exploration of Unstructured Environments
Middle Ear Robotic Surgery
Cochlear Implant Surgery


  • Yasin, R., Wang, L., Abah, C., & Simaan, N. (2018). Using continuum robots for force-controlled semi autonomous organ exploration and registration. In Medical Robotics (ISMR), 2018 International Symposium on (pp. 1-6). IEEE.
  • Simaan, N., Yasin, R. M., & Wang, L. (2018). Medical Technologies and Challenges of Robot-Assisted Minimally Invasive Intervention and Diagnostics. Annual Review of Control, Robotics, and Autonomous Systems1, 465-490.
  • Salman, H., Ayvali, E., Srivatsan, R.A., Ma, Y., Zevallos, N., Yasin, R., Wang, L., Siman, N. and Choset, H. (2017). Trajectory-optimized sensing for active search of tissue abnormalities in robotic surgery. IEEE Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA).
  • Chalasani, P., Wang, L., Yasin, R., Simaan, N., & Taylor, R. H. (2018). Preliminary Evaluation of an Online Estimation Method for Organ Geometry and Tissue Stiffness. IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters3(3), 1816-1823.
  • Wang, L., Chen, Z., Chalasani, P., Yasin, R. M., Kazanzides, P., Taylor, R. H., & Simaan, N. (2017). Force-controlled exploration for updating virtual fixture geometry in model-mediated telemanipulation. Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics9(2), 021010.
  • Yasin, R., Aiello, G. & Simaan, N (2017). Exploring Reflected Light Intensity to Estimate Depth of the Basal Turn in Cochlear Implant Surgery. In The Hamlyn Symposium on Medical Robotics.
  • Yasin, R., O'Connell, B. P., Yu, H., Hunter, J. B., Wanna, G. B., Rivas, A. et al. (2017). Steerable Robot-assisted Micromanipulation in the Middle Ear: Preliminary Feasibility Evaluation. Otology & Neurotology, 38(2), 290–295.
  • O'Connell, B., Yu, H., Rivas, A., Hunter, J., Yasin, R., Wanna, G. B. et al (2016). Steerable Robot Assisted Micro-Manipulation in the Middle Ear: Preliminary Feasibility Evaluation. In Combined Otolaryngology Society Meeting (COSM). Chicago, Illinois.
  • Wang, L., Chen, Z., Chalasani, P., Yasin, R. M., Kazanzides, P., Taylor, R. H. et al. (2016). Force-Controlled Exploration for Updating Virtual Fixture Geometry In Model-Mediated Telemanipulation. Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics, In press.

Prior to ARMA Lab:

  • S Mikaiel, R Yasin, S Ross, MW Wahi-Anwar, J Simonelli, D Lu, K Sung, T-C Tsao, HH Wu. Imaging Assessment and Feasibility of a Hydrostatically Actuated Robotic Systems for Real-Time MRI-Guided Interventions. Proceedings ISMRM Twenty-Third Scientific Sessions, 2015, p4142.
  • Y.C. Chang, B Berry-Pusey, R Yasin, N Vu, B Maraglia, A.X. Chatzijoannou, and T.C. Tsao. An Automated Mouse Tail Vascular Access System by Vision and Pressure Feedback. IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics. Vol 10. 2014
  • Yasin, R., Mikaiel, S., Sung, K., Lu, D., Wu, H., Tsao, T.C. "A Hydrostatically Actuated Robotic System for Real-time MRI-guided Interventions"  10th Interventional MRI Symposium 2014, Leipzig, Germany.
  • Frech, Abraham., Orozco, D., Davoudi, K., Ding, C., Field, R., Yasin, R., Roche, E., Holland, D., Walsh, C. "Laparoscopic Device for Direct and Indirect SuctionJ. Med. Devices 7(3), 2013.


Medical and flexible robotics

Google Scholar




  • 2016 - 2021: Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • 2012 - 2016: B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN


  • NSF Graduate Research Fellowship (2016)

Research Interests

  • Design and control of robots for surgery
  • Modeling and shape sensing of continuum robots


Refereed Journal Articles

  1. C. Abah, A. L. Orekhov, G. L. H. Johnston, N. Simaan "A Multi-Modal Sensor Array for Human-Robot Interaction and Confined Spaces Exploration Using Continuum Robots," IEEE Sensors Journal, 2022 (in press).
  2. G. Del Giudice, A. L. Orekhov, J. Shen, K. Joos, N. Simaan. “Investigation of Micro-motion Kinematics of Continuum Robots for Volumetric OCT and OCT-guided Visual Servoing,” IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics, 2020.
  3. A. L. Orekhov and N. Simaan, “Directional Stiffness Modulation of Parallel Robots With Kinematic Redundancy and Variable Stiffness Joints,” Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics, vol. 11, p. 051003, Oct. 2019. [video]
  4. A. L. Orekhov, C. B. Black, J. Till, S. Chung, and D. C. Rucker, “Analysis and Validation of a Teleoperated Surgical Parallel Continuum Manipulator,” IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters, vol. 1, pp. 828-835, July 2016. [video]

Refereed Conference Papers

  1. A. L. Orekhov, N. Simaan "Solving Cosserat Rod Models via Collocation and the Magnus Expansion," 2020 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Oct. 2020. [arXiv]
  2. G. L. H. Johnston, A. L. Orekhov, N. Simaan, "Kinematic Modeling and Compliance Modulation of Redundant Manipulators Under Bracing Constraints," 2020 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), May 2020. [arXiv]
  3. C. Abah, A. L. Orekhov, G. L. H. Johnston, P. Yin, H. Choset, and N. Simaan, “A Multi-modal Sensor Array for Safe Human-Robot Interaction and Mapping,” 2019 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), May 2019. [video]
  4. C. Abah, A. L. Orekhov, and N. Simaan, “Design Considerations and Redundancy Resolution for Variable Geometry Continuum Robots,” in 2018 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), pp. 767-774, May 2018. [video]
  5. A. L. Orekhov, V. A. Aloi, and D. C. Rucker, “Modeling parallel continuum robots with general intermediate constraints,” in 2017 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), pp. 6142-6149, May 2017.
  6. K. O. Butler, A. L. Orekhov, J. Childs, and C. Rucker, “A Rigid Mechanism With Uniform, Variable Curvature,” Journal of Medical Devices, vol. 10, p. 030953, Sept. 2016.
  7. A. L. Orekhov, C. E. Bryson, J. Till, S. Chung, and D. C. Rucker, “A surgical parallel continuum manipulator with a cable-driven grasper,” in 2015 37th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), pp. 5264-5267, Aug. 2015.
  8. J. Till, C. E. Bryson, S. Chung, A. Orekhov, and D. C. Rucker, “Efficient computation of multiple coupled Cosserat rod models for real-time simulation and control of parallel continuum manipulators,” in 2015 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), pp. 5067-5074, May 2015. 

Book Chapters

  1. A. L. Orekhov, C. Abah, and N. Simaan, “Snake-like robots for minimally invasive, single-port, and intraluminal surgeries,” in The Encyclopedia of Medical Robotics, vol. 1, pp. 203-243, World Scientific, Aug. 2018. [arXiv]


  1. A. L. Orekhov, G. L. H. Johnston, C. Abah. "An In-Situ Collaborative Robot for Manufacturing in Confined Spaces," 2021 ASME Student Mechanisms and Robotics Design Competition, Aug. 2021. (1st Place Prize)  [link]
  2. A. L. Orekhov, J. Seo, N. Simaan. "Kinematics and Shape Sensing of a Collaborative Continuum Robot," IROS 2020 workshop on "Application-Oriented Modelling and Control of Soft Robots,"  Nov. 2020. (2nd Place Poster Prize) [pdf]
  3. A. L. Orekhov, G. L. H. Johnston, C. Abah, H. Choset, and N. Simaan, “Towards Collaborative Robots with Sensory Awareness: Preliminary Results Using Multi-Modal Sensing,” in ICRA 2019 workshop "Physical human-robot interaction: a design focus,"  May 2019. [pdfvideo]






nima sarli


  • 2013 - 2018: PhD. in Mechanical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN
  • 2011 - 2013: MSc. in Mechanical Engineering, Northeastern University, Boston, MA
  • 2008 - 2011: MSc. in Mechanical Engineering, Amirkabir University of Tech. (Tehran Polytechnic), Tehran, Iran
  • 2004 - 2008: BSc. in Mechanical Engineering, Amirkabir University of Tech. (Tehran Polytechnic), Tehran, Iran

Research Interests

  • Medical Robotics
  • Robotics & Control
  • Telerobotics



  • Stability and Transparency Analysis of Discrete-Time Time-Delayed Bilateral Teleoperation
  • AFM-Based Nano-telemanipulation Design
  • Stick-Slip Piezo-Actuator Modeling & Control Design
  • Stable Multi-User Interaction with Cooperative Haptic Virtual Environments


  • Sarli, N., "Design, Modeling & Control of Continuum Robots & Dexterous Wrists with Applications to Transurethral Bladder Cancer Resection.", PhD dissertation, Vanderbilt University, Sep 2018.
  • Sarli, N., Del Giudice, G., De, S., Dietrich, M. S., Herrell, S. D. and Simaan, N., "TURBot: a System for Robot-Assisted Transurethral Bladder Tumor Resection", IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics, Submitted.
  • Sarli, N., Noh, S. and Simaan, N., "Modeling and Performance Characterization of an Open-ended Wire-Driven Wrist Architecture for Robotic Minimally Invasive Surgery", Mechanism and Machine Theory, Submitted.
  • Sarli, N., Del Giudice, G., De, S., Dietrich, Mary S., Herrell, S. D. & Simaan, N. (2018). "Preliminary Porcine in vivo Evaluation of a Telerobotic System for Transurethral Bladder Tumor Resection & Surveillance". Journal of Endourology, vol. 32, no. 6, June 2018.
  • Sarli, N., Simaan, N. (2017). Minimal Visual Occlusion Redundancy Resolution of Continuum Robots in Confined Spaces . International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS2017).
  • Sarli, N., Marien, T., Mitchell, C. R., Giudice, G. D., Dietrich, M. S., Herrell, S. D. et al. (2016). Kinematic and Experimental Investigation of Manual Resection Tools for Transurethral Bladder Tumor Resection. The International Journal of Medical Robotics and Computer Assisted Surgery.
  • Sarli, N., Giudice, G. D., Herrell, D. S. & Simaan, N. (2016). A Resectoscope for Robot-Assisted Transurethral SurgeryASME Journal of Medical Devices 2(10), 020911.
  • Sarli, N., Giudice, G. D., Herrell, D. S. & Simaan, N (2016). A Resectoscope for Robot-Assisted Transurethral Surgery. In 2016 Design of Medical Devices Conference(DMD'2016). Minneapolis, MN, USA.
  • Giudice, G. D., Sarli, N., Herrell, S. D. & Simaan, N (2016). Design Considerations for Continuum Robot Actuation Units Enabling Dexterous Transurethral Bladder Cancer Resection. In International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (ASME IDETC/CIE2016). Charlotte,NC,USA.
  • Sarli, N., Marien, T., Herrell, S. D. & Simaan, N (2015). Characterization of resection dexterity in transurethral resection of bladder tumor: A kinematic study. In IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA2015), pages 5324 - 5329.
  • Marien, T., Sarli, N., Mitchell, C., Del Giudice, G., Simaan, N. & Herrell, S. D (2015). Surgeon Resection Performance DuringTransurethral Resection of Bladder Tumor (TURBT): A Quantified Study. In 30th annual meeting of Engineering and Urology Society.
  • N., Sarli, S., M., Rezaei, S., S., Ghidary, M., Zareinejad, H., A., Talebi, M. Dehghan, On Stability and Transparency of a Time-Discretized Time-Delayed Impedance- Controlled Force-Reflecting Teleoperation. (IFAC2011)  (pdf)
  • N., Sarli, I., Kardan, S., Shiri, Ghidary, K., Baghestan, Robust H_Infinity and Mu-Synthesis Controller Design for an Underwater Unmanned Vehicle. Proc. 18th Annual International Conference on Mechanical Engineering, Iran (ISME2010)
  • S., Samadzade, M., H., Korayem, N., Sarli, M., Zareinejad, Stability in a Neural Network-Based Nano-telemanipulation through Adaptive Tuning of the Haptic Interface Dissipation. (Digest Journal of Nanomaterials & Biostructures)
  • S., Samadzade, M., Habibnejad, Korayem, N., Sarli, A Novel Approach for the Design of a 1-DOF Nano-Telemanipulation System Involving a Virtual Slave and Environment Based on Passivity and Coupled Stability Theory. Proc. ASME 2010 Int. Mechanical Engineering Cong. & Expo. (IMECE2010)
  • S., Samadzade, M., Habibnejad, Korayem, N., Sarli, AFM-Based Nano-Telemanipulation for Indenting on a Human Chromosome Using Sliding-Mode Impedance-Based Controller for the Slave. Proc. 17th Int. Conference on Biomedical Engineering, (ICBME2010)
  • R. Jaberzadeh Ansari, M. Zareinejad, S.M. Rezaei, K. Baghestan, N. Sarli, Stable multi-user interaction with cooperative haptic virtual environments by a modification of passive set-position modulation. (IET Control Theory & Applications)


  • Northeastern University Excellence Fellowship
  • Best Paper Award at 33th Annual meeting of Engineering and Urology Society, San Francisco, USA