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Blake Hannaford

  • Professor, Electrical Engineering
  • Director, Biorobotics Laboratory
  • Adjunct Professor, Bioengineering, Mechanical Engineering, Surgery

Before graduate study, Blake Hannaford held engineering positions in digital hardware and software design, office automation and medical image processing. At Berkeley he pursued thesis research in multiple target tracking in medical images and the control of time-optimal voluntary human movement. From 1986 to 1989 he worked on the remote control of robot manipulators in the Man-Machine Systems Group in the Automated Systems Section of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech. He supervised that group from 1988 to 1989. Since September 1989, he has been at the University of Washington in Seattle except for work at Google Life Sciences from 2014-15. He was awarded the National Science Foundation’s Presidential Young Investigator Award and the Early Career Achievement Award from the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Hannaford’s currently active interests include haptic displays on the internet, surgical biomechanics and biologically based design of robot manipulators. He co-founded a spinout company, Applied Dexterity, in 2013.


Representative Publications

  • Hannaford, B. and Rosen, J. and Friedman, Diana DW and King, H. and Roan, P. and Cheng, L. and Glozman, D. and Ma, J. and Kosari, S.N. and White, L. (2013) Raven-II: AN Open Platform for Surgical Robotics Research. IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, 60. pp. 954-959.
  • Hu, Danying (2015) Path Planning for Semi-automated Simulated Robotic Neurosurgery. In: 2015 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Sep28-Oct02, 2015, Hamburg.
  • Lindsay, J. and Adams, R. and Hannaford, B. (2013) Improving Tactile Feedback with an Impedance Adapter. In: Proc. 2013 World Haptics Congress, Daejon, Korea.
  • Adams, R.J. and Olowin, A. and Krekovich, E. and Hannaford, B. and Lindsay, J.I.C and Homer, P. and Patrie, J. and Sands, S. (2013) Glove-Enabled Computer Operations (GECO): Design and Testing of an Extravehicular Activity Glove Adapted for Human-Computer Interface. In: Proc. 43rd International Conference on Environmental Systems.
  • Lindsay, J.I.C and Jiang, I. and Larson, E. and Adams, R.J. and Patel, S. and Hannaford, B. (2013) Good Vibrations; An Evaluation of Vibrotactile Impedance Matching for Low Power Wearable Applications. In: Proc. UIST 13.
  • Hannaford, B. and Buttolo, P. and King, H. (2014) Multi-finger Haptic Displays for Characterization of Hand Response. In: The Human Hand: A Source of Inspiration for Robotic Hand: Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics (STAR) series,. Springer, Heidelberg., pp. 363-388.
Blake Hannaford Headshot
Phone(206) 543-2197
Box 352500
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195



  • Ph.D. Electrical Engineering, 1985
    University of California, Berkeley
  • MS, Electrical Engineering, 1982
    University of California, Berkeley
  • BS, Engineering and Applied Science, 1977
    Yale University