Dr.-Ing. Svenja Spindeldreier (née Tappe)

Dr.-Ing. Svenja Spindeldreier

Dr.-Ing. Svenja Spindeldreier
Dr.-Ing. Svenja Spindeldreier
Group Leader
Medical Technology & Image Processing
Research Staff
Institute of Mechatronic Systems


The investigation of difficult to reach cavities through narrow accesses is called borescopy in the technical environment and endoscopy in medicine. If manipulation is to be performed in addition to pure inspection, a stable working platform is required to withstand manipulation forces in combination with good adaptability to curved paths.

One approach to address the resulting requirements for the systems used are snake-like robots. Their hyper-redundant structure of individual actuators allows for versatile positioning. Although the use of binary, tilt-stable actuators limits the working space to a few discrete points, they offer - depending on the drive mechanism - particularly high holding torques and thus enable a targeted system stiffening. A combination of both approaches to the class of binary actuated, hyper-redundant manipulators is able to meet the required requirements, however, there is a clear need for research into methods for optimal design and the targeted pursuit of reference paths, so that the core of the present work consists the investigation of model-based motion planning of this robot class.

A prerequisite for a high path following accuracy is that the manipulator is able to adapt well to a given reference path. The degree of limitation due to discrete positionability of the manipulator depends on the geometric parameters of the individual segments. The studies in this thesis show that the analysis of kinematic performance characteristics, such as work space (density) or achievable radius of curvature, does not lead to a generally valid optimal design. Therefore, a dimensional synthesis is developed under consideration of boundary conditions, in which optimal geometric parameters of a single binary actuator are synthesized. Based on this, a path following according to the "Follow-the-Leader" principle is elaborated. The basic idea is that the end effector segment explores the reference path, while all other actuators automatically follow the leading segment. Since binary actuators have a discontinuous switching process, a model-based approach is proposed for determining optimal switching sequences that guarantee high path accuracy at all times. The subsequent experimental evaluation is performed after modelling and identification of relevant parameters for the prototype of an electromagnetic tilting actuator chain. In principle, the functionality of the motion planning methods investigated in this thesis are proven both in simulation and experimentally.  




seit 2021: Head of Medical Technology and Image Processing Group at Institut of Mechatronic Systems, Leibniz University Hannover  

12/2020:  PhD Defence

2020:  Parental Leave

2017 - 2019: Head of Robotics and Autonomous Systems Group at Institut of Mechatronic Systems,  Leibniz University Hannover

2013 - 2017: Research assistant in the Robotics and Autonomous Systems Group at Institut of Mechatronic Systems,  Leibniz University Hannover



Supervised student research projects


  • Project thesis: Identification of model parameters and experimental evaluation of the path-following accuracy of a hyperredundant electromagnetic manipulator


  • Project thesis: Influence of the systems dynamic on the motion planning of a hyper-redundant, electromagnetically actuated manipulator
  • Diploma thesis (external): Development and evaluation of a sensor fusion method for vehicle localization using classified landmarks from a visual sensor
  • Master thesis (external): Development of a visual inspection system for the detection and localization of tire flashes
  • Master thesis (external): Virtually Guided Path Planning for Autonomous Guided Vehicles
  • Master thesis: Development and implementation of a mobile robot with an implement for autonomous weed control
  • Project thesis: Navigation of a robot for autonomous weed removing
  • Master thesis: Time Efficient Motion Planning for a Hyper-Redundant, Binary Actuated Robot
  • Project thesis (external): Adaptive zero-velocity thresholding for foot-mounted inertial navigation systems


  • Master thesis: Avoidance of unintended movements of a binary-actuated, hyper redundant snake-like robot by increasing the holding torques of the tilting actuators
  • Bachelor thesis: Fitting Algorithms for Hyper-Redundant, Binary Actuated Robots
  • Master thesis: Proprioception of a hyperredundant endoscopic system based on a sensitive sheath
  • Master thesis: Evaluation of the Path Following Accuracy of a Hyper-Redundant, Electromagnetically Actuated Robot
  • Project thesis: Estimation of the Influence of External Forces on the Positioning Capabilities of a Snake-Like Robot
  • Diploma thesis: Concept, Implementation and Evaluation of a Hardware Module for Follow-the-Leader Control of a snake-like robot
  • Project thesis: Development of a Reference Modell for the Synthesis a Hyper-Redundant Manipulator Based on Binary Actuation
  • Project thesis: Evaluation of the Influence of different Materials on the Thermal Behaviour of an Electromagnetic Tilting Actuator
  • Master thesis (external): Modeling of the Robot Workcell using Low-Cost 3D Sensor


  • Bachelor thesis: Design of a Continuous End-Effector Segment for Position Error Compensation of a Binary Actuated Robot
  • Master thesis: „Follow-the-Leader“ Control Algorithm for a Binary Snake-like Robot with a Continuously Actuated End-Effector Platform
  • Master thesis: Complexity Reduction of the “Follow-the-Leader” Control Technique for a Snake-like Robot
  • Project thesis (external): Conception and Development of a ROS-based Mobile Autonomous System for Material Handling on the Basis of a Volksbot RT3 


  • Bachelor thesis: Evaluation of Path Following Capabilities for the Synthesis a Hyper-Redundant Manipulator Based on Binary Actuation


  • Master thesis: Optimized Follow-the-Leader Control for a Hyper-Redundant Robot Based on Electromagnetic Bending Actuators