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Newsmaker: Carmel Majidi

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Carmel Majidi, 32, CMU professor and robotics researcher

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Monday, March 25, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

Noteworthy: Recently awarded a $360,000 research grant from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research's Young Investigator Program to continue his work on soft matter electronics to improve power sources for air vehicles and flight suits.

Occupation: Assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University

Residence: East End

Age: 32

Education: Bachelor's degree in civil and environmental engineering, Cornell University, 2001; master's in electrical engineering and computer sciences, University of California at Berkeley, 2004; doctorate in electrical engineering and computer sciences, University of California at Berkeley, 2007.

Background: Majidi, a principal researcher at CMU's Soft Machines Lab, is working to develop the next generation of autonomous robots from soft materials that can harvest electricity from their environment.

Quote: “I'm extremely grateful for this award as I continue my research. … These types of new materials will be the building blocks for a new generation of devices and robots composed entirely of soft materials and fluids.”

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