Office: 232 Smith Hall

Google Scholar | RI webpage

Ruta Desai

I am a PhD student at the Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University working with Prof. Stelian Coros. My research interests lie in applying optimization techniques to solve complex design and engineering problems. For my current research, I build computational design tools for fabrication towards increasing accessibility of robotics. In the long term, I would like to build technologies that enhance the life and well-being of community at large.

In past, I have had not-so-brief stints in the area of human motor control and biomechanical simulations. During my Masters, I worked with Prof. Hartmut Geyer on understanding human control of leg placement. I have also spent some time trying to understand human balance, and motor skill aquisition in people learning bongoboarding with Prof. Jessica K. Hodgins as an intern at Disney Research Pittsburgh.

I get enthusiastic about pretty much any idea on education, DIY and environment conservation. I love traveling and hiking.


Computational Design, Digital Fabrication

Computational Abstractions for Interactive Design of Robotic Devices
Ruta Desai, Ye Yuan and Stelian Coros
IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Singapore (2017).                          
PDF | Video
3D Printing Pneumatic Device Controls with Variable Activation Force Capabilities
Marynel Vazquez, Eric Brockmeyer, Ruta Desai, Chris Harrison and Scott E. Hudson
ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI), Seoul, Korea, (2015).
PDF | bib | Poster | Video

Biomechanics, Human Motion Modeling, Human Motor Control

A Simple Model of Skill Acquisition in a Dynamic Balance Task
Ruta Desai and Jessica K. Hodgins
Dynamic Walking, Columbus, USA (2015).
PDF | bib | Poster | Video
Virtual Model Control for Dynamic Lateral Balance
Ruta Desai, Hartmut Geyer and Jessica K. Hodgins
IEEE International Conference on Humanoid Robots (Humanoids), Madrid, Spain (2014).
PDF | bib
Integration of an Adaptive Swing Control into a Neuromuscular Human Walking Model
Seungmoon Song, Ruta Desai and Hartmut Geyer
IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC), Osaka, Japan (2013).
PDF | bib | Video
Muscle-Reflex Control of Robust Swing Leg Placement
Ruta Desai and Hartmut Geyer
IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Karlsruhe, Germany (2013).
PDF | bib
Robust Swing Leg Placement under Large Disturbances
Ruta Desai and Hartmut Geyer
IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Biomimetics (ROBIO), Guangzhou, China (2012).
PDF | bib


Robust swing leg controller under large disturbances
Ruta Desai and Hartmut Geyer
US 20150066156 A1 (2014).                                                                                                                 


CMU Laptop Rehab

Do you have an old laptop or computer lying unused that is too slow for your needs? Would you like to see it in the hands of a school child using it as a means to learn? :)

A bunch of us refurbish old laptops and desktops and donate them to schools. Read more!

Women In Technology

RI-Meta Seminars

I help run this new seminar series started by a fellow PhD student Felix Duvallet, which covers a variety of high-level (meta) topics that we all do as robotics researchers.

Interested in giving a talk?
Read more!


Office: 232 Smith Hall