Research at EPFL’s Flexible Structures Laboratory (the fleXLab) focuses on developing a fundamental understanding of the large deformation of slender structures that emerge in their post-buckling regime. We seek to harvest the underlying mechanical instabilities towards understanding and exploiting novel functional mechanisms, over a wide range of length scales.
Our work is rooted on the basis of recognizing scaled high-precision model experiments as a powerful tool for discovery and exploration in Mechanics, supported by theory and computation, in a vision of science-enabled engineering and engineering-motivated science. The final goal is to develop new classes of functional, flexible structures that can be rationally designed using predictive modeling frameworks.
We are passionate about engineering applications of flexible thin structures across a wide range of length scales, as well as opening up new curiosity-driven fundamental questions (and providing answers!) in this class of geometrically nonlinear mechanical systems.