SRI International

SRI International (2)

Curtis R. Carlson , Ph.D, president and CEO of SRI International, has been named a Charter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI).

Election to NAI Fellow status is a high professional distinction accorded to academic inventors who have demonstrated a highly prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and the welfare of society.

The 98 innovators elected to NAI Fellow status represent 54 universities and non-profit research institutes.  Together, they hold more than 3,200 U.S. patents.

Included in the Charter class are 8 Nobel Laureates, 2 Fellows of the Royal Society, 12 presidents of research universities and non-profit research institutes, 50 members of the National Academies (National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine), 11 inductees of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, 3 recipients of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, 4 recipients of the National Medal of Science, and 29 AAAS Fellows, among other awards and distinctions.

The NAI Charter Fellows will be inducted as Fellows by the U.S. Commissioner for Patents, Margaret A. Focarino , from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, during the 2nd Annual Conference of the National Academy of Inventors, on Feb. 22, 2013, in Tampa, Fla., at the Embassy Suites Hotel in the University of South Florida Research Park. Fellows will be presented with a special trophy and a rosette pin.

The NAI Charter Fellows will be recognized in a full page advertisement in The Chronicle of Higher Education on Jan. 18, 2013, in the Jan. 2013 issue of Inventors Digest, and in a future issue of Technology and Innovation – Proceedings of the National Academy of Inventors.

Dr. Carlson is widely sought as a speaker and thought leader on innovation and global competitiveness. He serves on the National Academy of Engineering Committee on Manufacturing, Design, and Innovation, and is a council member on the Government-University-Industry Research Roundtable (a joint body of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine). He serves as co-chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Singapore National Research Foundation. He is a founding member of the Innovation Leadership Council for the World Economic Forum and was selected to serve on President Obama's National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. He advises U.S. governors and prime ministers, economic ministers, and education ministers around the world on innovation, competitiveness, and educational reform. Carlson has published or presented numerous technical publications and holds fundamental patents in the fields of image quality, image coding, and computer vision.

Academic inventors and innovators elected to the rank of NAI Charter Fellow were nominated by their peers for outstanding contributions to innovation in areas such as patents and licensing, innovative discovery and technology, significant impact on society, and support and enhancement of innovation.

The NAI Fellows Selection Committee is comprised of 14 Members from the National Academies, recipients of National Medals, a National Inventors Hall of Fame inductee, and senior officials from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), the United Inventors Association and University Research Leadership.

The National Academy of Inventors® is a 501c3 non-profit organization comprised of more than 45 U.S. and international universities and non-profit research institutes, with over 2,000 individual academic inventor members, and growing rapidly. It was founded in 2010 to recognize and encourage inventors with a patent issued from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, enhance the visibility of academic technology and innovation, encourage the disclosure of intellectual property, educate and mentor innovative students, and translate the inventions of its members to benefit society. The NAI publishes a newsletter and edits the multidisciplinary journal, Technology and Innovation – Proceedings of the National Academy of Inventors, published by Cognizant Communication Corporation (NY).

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SRI International will exhibit dexterous telerobotics and demonstrate its wall-climbing robot during a Robot Block Party event at Stanford University's Volkswagen Automotive Innovation Lab (VAIL) on Thursday, April 14, from 1 to 7 p.m. SRI's dexterous telerobotics includes the organization's latest robotic prototype, which can be used to defeat vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs) from a safe distance.

The block party is part of the second annual National Robotics Week (NRW), organized by the Robotics Caucus of the U.S. Congress and leading robotics companies, schools, and organizations. The event, which is free and open to the public, is one of numerous events planned for April 9 to 17 to showcase robotics technology throughout the U.S.

"We look forward to participating again in this annual event where we can share SRI's robot technologies directly with the public," said Rich Mahoney, director of the Robotics Program at SRI. "We will show the unique contributions robotics are making in different industries, and we hope to inspire students to consider careers in robotics."

The purpose of NRW is to celebrate the U.S. as a leader in robotics technology development and to educate the public about how robotics technology impacts society — now and in the future. Goals of planned events include

* Recognizing the transformative role of robotics technology and the ability of robots to educate
* Highlighting robotics technologies helping to improve healthcare, national defense, homeland security, energy, manufacturing, logistics, transportation, agriculture, education, and consumer goods
* Inspiring students to consider careers in robotics and other Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)-related fields

SRI's History of Robotic Innovations

SRI has a long history in the field of robotics, beginning with Shakey, the first mobile robot to reason about its actions. Through the years, SRI has also pioneered medical and telepresence technologies. In 1995, SRI spun off Intuitive Surgical, Inc. to commercialize its revolutionary robotic surgical technology. More recently, SRI's M7 telesurgical robot was used in the first robotic surgery demonstration in a simulated zero-gravity environment, and in an experiment involving multiple biomedical robots manipulated from different locations.

In 2008, SRI developed its wall-climbing robot using electroadhesion — an electrically controllable adhesion technology. This robotic technology uses a small amount of power and has the ability to repeatedly clamp to wall surfaces covered in dust or debris. SRI has demonstrated its wall-climbing robot on surfaces such as concrete, wood, steel, glass, drywall, and brick. Potential applications include military use, first responders, inspection, or ladder safety.  

For more information about SRI's robot technologies, visit

For more information about Stanford University's Robot Block Party and National Robotics Week, visit and

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