Natural Sciences and Engineering
Associate Professor Amir Patel

Department of Electrical Engineering
University of Cape Town

Professor Amir Patel is a Mechatronics Engineer. His pursuit of designing the next generation of robots informed his research on cheetahs and has been groundbreaking in understanding rapid manoeuvres (turning, acceleration and braking) of both animals and robots, resulting in novel robots, innovative sensing systems and new algorithms for the simulation of robotic systems. Prof Patel obtained his PhD in Biomechanics at the University of Cape Town. In 2016, he won the Claude Leon Merit for Young Researchers and was appointed Visiting Research Scholar at Carnegie Mellon University and Johns Hopkins University. In 2019, his team developed Africa’s first bipedal robot, “Baleka”, prominently featured in the media. He co-founded the African Robotics Unit, Africa’s first robotic research unit, and currently serves as its director. He was named as one of only two Africans to receive the Google Research Scholar award and was promoted to Associate Professor at UCT. He currently supervises three PhD and seven Master’s students, and has graduated seven students to completion. His publications include one book chapter, two international patents, 17 journal articles, and 15 conference proceedings.