Description: Description: Description: O'Malley bio picture.jpgMarcia K. O’Malley
Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering
Rice University
Dept. of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science - MS 321
6100 Main Street
Houston, Texas 77005-1892


Office:   Mechanical Engineering Building, Room 234
Phone:   713-348-3545
Fax:       713-348-5423
Email:   omalleym (-at-)


Lab:       Ryon Laboratory, Rooms B10 and B12

Lab Phone: 713-348-2300


Maps and Parking information



Mechatronics and Haptic Interfaces (MAHI) Lab



Marcia O’Malley is an Associate Professor in the Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science Department at Rice University, and is a co-founder of Houston Medical Robotics.  She holds a joint appointment in Computer Science at Rice, and is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Departments of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at both Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Texas Medical School at Houston. At Rice, her research interests focus on the issues that arise when humans physically interact with robotic systems. One thrust of her lab is the design of haptic feedback and shared control between robotic devices and their human users for training and rehabilitation in virtual environments. Psychophysical studies provide insight into the effect of haptic cues on human motor adaptation, skill acquisition, and the restoration of motor coordination. Another area of interest is nanorobotic manipulation with haptic feedback, and the use of vision-based sensing for control of robotic manipulators and the generation of force feedback to the operator.  She has also explored the use of haptic devices for teaching the fundamentals of dynamic systems and control in the mechanical engineering curriculum.  In 2008, she received the George R. Brown Award for Superior Teaching at Rice University. O’Malley is a 2004 Office of Naval Research Young Investigator and the recipient of the NSF CAREER Award in 2005. Additionally, she is chair of the IEEE Technical Committee on Haptics. She is a former Associate Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Haptics and currently serves on the editorial board of the ASME/IEEE Transactions on Mechatronics.


Research Interests


Modeling, design, and control of haptic interfaces

Modeling, design, and control of telemanipulation and human augmentation systems

Study of human-robot interactions


Research Links

Curriculum Vitae  (updated 2011)



For Current/Prospective Students


Letters of recommendation

A Message for Prospective Students (post-doc, graduate, and undergraduate)


Media Links


Courses taught

Current course webpages are available through OwlSpace on the Rice server.

MECH 343 – Modeling Dynamic Systems (as of 2004)

MECH 343 – Modeling Dynamic Systems (with MECH 411)

MECH 401 – Mechanical Design Applications

MECH 407/408 – Senior Design Projects (as of 2006)

MECH 407/408 – Senior Design Projects (with ELEC 491/492)

MECH 420 – Fundamentals of Control Systems

MECH 488/588 – Design of Mechatronic Systems

MECH 498/598 – Introduction to Robotics (cross-listed as ELEC 498 and COMP 498)




Photos (updated Jan 2012)





Mechanical Engineering

Vanderbilt University



Mechanical Engineering

Vanderbilt University



Mechanical Engineering

Purdue University





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