Human-Robotic Mimetic Haptic Control Framework

Case ID:

This technology is a method for training a robot to perform the tasks that typically require skilled manual labor with a trowel when installing Exterior Insulation Finishing Systems (EIFS). It measures a human’s motions while using a tool (in this case a trowel), which is then used to teach the robot to perform similarly.

Exterior Insulation Finishing Systems are a type of cladding that is added to the exterior of buildings to insulate and waterproof them while also maintaining a stylish appearance. EIFS installation is very labor-intensive and typically requires skilled manual use of a trowel. This technology seeks to make EIFS installation easier, by learning how actual skilled workers use a trowel and replicating their behavior.

While this invention is designed primarily to assist with automation of EIFS installation, it has many additional possible applications where there is a demand for automation of skilled manual work. For example, it could be used for painting, sculpting, and other construction or destruction-related tasks. In essence, it can be applied to many situations where skilled manual use of a tool is typically required.


  • Construction
  • Exterior Insulation Finishing System (EIFS) installation
  • Masonry
  • Sculpture
  • Painting
  • Robotic learning


  • Automates labor-intensive process
  • Ideal for hazardous environments
Patent Information:
Contact For More Information:
Rakhi Gibbons
Director of Licensing & IP
The University of Arizona
Lead Inventor(s):
Wolfgang Fink
Mark Tarbell