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Research profile

Lucas C. (Luuk) van Laake is a researcher at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) in the Dynamics and Control group of the Department of Mechanical Engineering. He currently works on soft robotics for medical and haptics applications as well as embodied (artificial) intelligence. Luuk pursues an academic career that combines research and teaching with societal impact and valorization.

Academic background

In 2018, Lucas C. (Luuk) van Laake started his academic career as a researcher at AMOLF, with a background of 10+ years in R&D across disciplines ranging from digital printing and renewables to the creative industries.

At AMOLF, an academic institute for fundamental physics with high societal relevance in Amsterdam, he pursued his PhD in the Soft Robotic Matter Group led by J.T.B. (Bas) Overvelde. During his PhD he worked on improving the autonomy of soft robots based on embedded intelligence. He applied his methods to the development of a control system for a soft Total Artificial Heart that beats autonomously - without any electronics.

In 2006, van Laake obtained his MSc (cum laude) in Mechanical Engineering from TU/e. For his MSc thesis he developed a fast heating desktop reactor for carbon nanotube (CNT) growth with A. John Hart and Alexander Slocum at MIT.

After obtaining his MSc degree, he worked at Océ Research (currently: Canon) and XEMC Darwind (renewables, wind turbine development) as a researcher and project manager. In 2011 he started Digiluce, where he is working with world-renowned artists and designers to combine science with art.


The miracle of life is that we can never fully understand it, and yet we are living it every day. That is why I am most interested in two extremes on the creative spectrum: very fundamental research, and very applied work.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy


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