Dr. Yoseph Bar-Cohen, JPL, is a Senior Research
Scientist, the supervisor of the Electroactive Technologies Group (x355N), Resident NDE Expert, as well as in-charge of the Nondestructive
Evaluation and Advance Actuators (NDEAA) Lab that he established in 1991. He received his Ph. D. in Physics (1979) and M.Sc. in
Materials Science (1973) from the Hebrew University, Jerusalem,
Israel. He is a physicist
specializing in electroactive materials/mechanisms, biomimetics and ultrasonic
Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE).
Under his leadership many innovative concepts and mechanisms were
initiated, analytically modeled, simulated, developed, and experimentally
tested for planetary exploration, commercial, medical, and other
applications. He made two
notable discoveries of ultrasonic wave phenomena in composite materials:
the polar backscattering (1979) and the leaky Lamb waves (LLW) (1983). From Nov. 2009 to Sept. 2011, he served
as the Chair of the JPL’s Senior Research Scientists Council. Dr. Bar-Cohen is a Fellow of two
technical societies: The International Society for Optical Engineering
(SPIE), and the American Society for Nondestructive Testing (ASNT).
His scientific, engineering and
technology accomplishments and leadership have earned him two NASA Honor
Award Medals - NASA Exceptional Engineering Achievement Medal (2001), and
NASA Exceptional Technology Achievement (2006), the JPL’s Magellan Award
(2016) for extraordinary work in advancing the field of electroactive
materials and mechanisms, two SPIE’s Lifetime Achievement Awards – NDE
(2001) and Smart Materials and Structures (2005), the ASNT’s 2002 Lester
Honor Lecture Award, the 2006 ASNT Sustained Excellence award, the 2007
SPIE President’s Award as well as many other honors and awards. Dr.
Bar-Cohen is listed on 34 Who’s Who Biographic Directories and his brief
bio is listed on Wikipedia with links to his websites at JPL. Also, the Nov. 2001 issue of Tech Briefs
featured him as a Who’s Who in NASA. His research and accomplishments with his
teams received extensive media coverage including interviews
with radio and TV stations, NASA Press Releases, JPL's Universe, as well as
articles in daily newspapers, magazines, and technically related
His prior affiliations include: Principal
Specialist, McDonnell Douglas Corp., Long Beach, CA (1983-1991); Sr.
Physicist, Systems Research Lab (SRL), Dayton, Ohio, at the Air Force
Materials Lab. (AFML) (1980-1983); Post-doctorate, National Research
Council (NRC) at AFML (1979-1980); and Sr. NDE Specialist, Israel Aircraft
Industry (IAI) (1971-1979).
Currently, he is responsible for developing ultrasonic drills
and planetary samplers, sample containerization method using inductively heated brazing (for
simultaneously performing separation, seaming, sealing, and sterilization
of double-wall containers); electroactive
mechanisms, ultrasonic NDE and health monitoring methods, as well as high
power ultrasonic techniques. The
containerization method addresses the critical need for the extremely
strict planetary protection requirements of the Mars Sample Return (MSR)
mission to prevent contamination of Earth.
His professional expansion into the field of electroactive
technologies started from his initiated collaboration with MIT to apply his
elastic plate wave related expertise to jointly develop piezoelectric
motors under a NASA Telerobotic task. He followed his success with numerous
initiatives and tasks leadership funded by JPL, NASA, and reimbursable
sources including: AFOSR, AGA, Army, Boston Scientific, Consolidated Edison,
DARPA, the Federal Highway Administration, NIH, Placidus and Teleflex.
He made significant contributions to NDE of composites and bonded
solids as well as aging aircraft structures. He initiated and led the development of
real time monitoring of composites curing, broadband transducers, and a
device for nondestructive determination of elastic properties of
composites. Using the expertise that he established in electroactive
technologies, he pursued innovation and R&D in biomimetics and
robotics, including the Multifunctional Automated
Crawling System (MACS), and an on-command exoskeleton. The crawler MACS was designed to serve as
a robotic platform for PC-board base instruments. As a follow-on effort, he edited and
co-authored an ASNT book on the subject of robotics for NDE (published by
ASNT in 2000). Since 1995, he has
actively pioneered technology for applications in the field of medicine,
which has recently become a strategic emphasis of the JPL’s Executive Council.
He initiated and led developments of novel devices for noninvasive
diagnostics and treatment using piezo-sensors and actuators resulting in
many NTRs and registered patents.
Dr. Bar-Cohen played a key role in establishing the field of Electroactive
Polymers (EAP), edited the defining book, and also he defined the
sub-disciplines of ionic and field or electronic driven. For many years, he has been leading instructor
of annual SPIE course on EAP. In an
effort to promote rapid advances in the development of EAP, his initiatives
and proactive efforts led to the SPIE’s EAPAD annual conference (which he has been
chairing since 1999), as well as has been publishing the semi-annual WW-EAP Newsletter, and maintaining the WW-EAP Webhub. In 1999, Dr. Bar-Cohen posed a challenge
to the worldwide research and engineering community to develop a robotic
arm that is actuated by EAP (also known as artificial muscles) to win an arm-wrestling match against a human opponent. He held the
first wrestling match between EAP actuated arms and human on March 7, 2005
as part of the SPIE Annual International EAPAD Conference.
Three arms wrestled with a high school female student and she won
against all of them. This loss of the EAP actuated arms
highlighted the complexity and significance of the challenge that he posed
and it attracted enormous professional and public attention to the
field. The graphic representation, which he created to
illustrate the arm-wrestling challenge, has become the icon of the field of
EAP in technical presentations worldwide.
For his contributions to the field of EAP,
Business Week named him, under the category Gurus of Technology, as one of
“Five People Pushing Tech's Boundaries” and “The Brain behind Plastic Muscle”; Popular Science
(mirrored by CNN) named him the “Artificial Muscle Man”; SPIE’s OE magazine
described him as “redefining robotics” and Scientific American
described him as the “unofficial coordinator” of the field of EAP.
teaching and mentoring activity includes his serving an Adjunct Full
Professor at the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Dept., UCLA (1989 –
1993). At JPL, he served as a mentor of over 60 students and 9 postdocs, where
four of postdocs he hired as full-time JPL employees. Also, he taught many EAP courses during
the annual SPIE Smart Structures symposia and other forums. Dr. Bar-Cohen has established and is
maintaining a large international network of peers (over 2,600 worldwide) from
the academic, NASA and industry to whom he has been disseminating his
Edited Newsletters. These Newsletters
consist of scientists’ and engineers’ inputs from NASA, DoD, academia, and
industry. His first Newsletter
series were about NDE NASA-wide (13 issues), then about Materials and
Processes NASA-wide (2 issues), and his latest are about EAP and
Biomimetics worldwide (since the start in 1999, he published 35 issues).
Publication record: He (co)edited/(co)authored 9 books,
(co)authored over 380 publications of which 66 in refereed professional
journal and 72 book chapters, served as an Editor of 26 conference
proceedings, made hundreds of presentations (including 40 Plenary, Keynote
and Invited papers) at national and international conferences, and he is
the Biomimetics Book Series Editor for CRC Press; and Smart Materials,
Structures and Systems Book Series Editor for Artech
House. He is Co-Editor-in-Chief of
the International Journal of Advanced Robotic System, as well as a member
of the Editorial Board of 4 other journals (of robotics and
biomimetics). He served as a Guest
Editor for 4 special issues of professional journals (on topics related to
EAP, Smart Materials, and Biomimetics). He has (co)Chaired 47 national and
international Conferences/Symposia, served as
Symposia Track Coordinator of 7 Conferences, and co-Chaired 38 Symposia
Sessions. Moreover, he has
made over 50 colloquia presentations at academic institutes and lectures at
local societies’ monthly chapter meetings.
He gave two lectures (on Feb. 21 and 22, 2002 and Feb. 18 and 19,
2010) at the JPL’s Theodore von Kármán Lecture Series, which are held at
von Karman, JPL, and Pasadena City College (PCC). Moreover, he is a member of the
Board of the “Bioinspiration & Biomimetics:
learning from nature” Journal, The Institute of Physics, England (Since
Board of the Journal of Bionic Engineering (JBE) since December 2009.
board of the Advances in Materials Research Journal since May 2011.
Editor of the International Journal of Smart and Nano Materials, Taylor
& Francis Group, Since May 24, 2011
Editor in Chief, International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems,
Humanoid and Bioinspired Robotics, since April 2013
of the International Journal of Advanced Robotic System, since August 2013.
Book Series Editor, Taylor & Francis Group, Since 2010
Former Boards include: Editorial Advisory Board of the
International Journal of Structural Health Monitoring (IJSHM), Sept. 2001
to Nov. 2009
According to the Google Scholar (checked
on June 21, 2016), his publications have a high number of citations (10,368);
a Hirsch's Index 42; and i10-index of 163.
His introduction Chapter of his book about EAP has been cited by 1,657.
Innovation record: His innovation is
documented in 30 registered patents, 3 submitted patent disclosures, 10
Provisional Patents, 117 New Technology Reports (NTR), 73 Class 1 NASA Tech
Brief Awards, 90 Tech Briefs
publications, and 14 NASA Board (Space Act)
Honor Award Medals