Nabil Simaan receives prestigious Benjamins Award for 2010

Nabil Simaan

, associate professor of mechanical engineering, has received the 2010 Benjamins Award. The Benjamins Award is given by the Collegium Oto-Rhino-Laryngologicum Amicitiae Sacrum (CORLAS) and is regarded by many as the most impressive international award by the Otolaryngology society.  Simaan and his research partners won the award for their work on robotic insertions of steerable cochlear implant electrodes.Their work was presented last month at the annual Collegium in Budapest, Hungary.

Simaan received his B.Sc., M.Sc., and Ph.D. degrees in mechanical engineering from the Technion—Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa,Israel in 1996, 1999 and 2002. His masters and Ph.D. research focused on the design, synthesis and singularity analysis of parallel robots for medical applications, stiffness synthesis and modulation for parallel robots with actuation and kinematic redundancies.

In 2003, Simaan was appointed as a postdoctoral research scientist at Johns Hopkins University National Science Foundation (NSF) Engineering Research Center for Computer-Integrated Surgical Systems and Technology (ERC-CISST) where he focused on minimally invasive robotic assistance in confined spaces. He joined Columbia University as an assistant professor of mechanical engineering and the director of the Advanced Robotics and Mechanisms Applications (ARMA) Laboratory in 2005.

During the course of his research, Simaan designed and constructed compact parallel robots for medical applications and compact and down scalable surgical slaves for minimally invasive surgery of the throat and upper airway.  In 2009 he received the NSF Career award for young investigators to design new algorithms and robots for safe interaction with the anatomy.