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We are a curiosity-driven research group fascinated by nature, and more specifically by plants. Plants can transport liquids without pumps, move solids without muscles, and feel mechanical perturbations without nerves. These unlikely capabilities rely on a spectrum of physics and chemistry, but the underlying mechanisms are still largely notional. The NIFE lab seeks to uncover these mechanisms by leveraging mechanical and chemical processes at the cellular and organismal scales to develop bio-inspired devices for microfluidic networks, smart soft structures, and soft robotics.