About Me

I am a robotics engineer with a passion for product design, mechatronics, and machine learning.

Currently, I manage mechanical design of the door trim and overhead module for a next-gen vehicle at Tesla. Previously, I was the lead engineer of the instrument panel for the Model 3 upgrade and Model Y Structural Pack. Before that, I designed a drivetrain for an electric skateboard company based out of Poland, created robotic kits and assembly guides for low-income school districts through C-STEM, and prototyped a handheld surgical tool used to treat pediatric ear infections at Tusker Medical.

I hold a Master's degree in robotics from Stanford University and a Bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from UC Davis.

A headshot of Shail Trivedi.


A 7 degree of freedom Franka Emika Panda robot manipulator arm is moving to balance a small green ball on a larger red plate.
BalancingBot: Maximizing Performance of a High-Complexity Manipulation Task Using Discrete Actions
Poster | Report | Code

Single-arm manipulator learns to balance a ball on a plate using a Deep Q-Network in a custom RoboSuite environment with a discretized action space.

Keywords: Deep Reinforcement Learning (RL), Deep Q-Network (DQN), Hindsight Experience Replay, Single Life RL, Robosuite, Markov Decision Process (MDP), Reward Shaping, PyTorch
An animation of a vehicle charging simulation with plots of the vehicle's battery and travel path over time.
Electric Vehicle Route Planning with Uncertainty in Charger Wait Times
Report | Code

Determine a policy that generates the optimal travel route for an electric vehicle from a randomized start and end point, while taking uncertainty in charging station wait time into account.

Keywords: Reinforcement Learning (RL), Markov Decision Process (MDP), Value Iteration, SARSA, Monte-Carlo Tree Search (MCTS), Reward Shaping
An animation of a haptic mini golf club and the final game setup on a laptop screen.
Haptic Mini-Golf

An interactive game where a user holds a 6-DOF handheld haptic golf club and tries to putt the virtual golf ball into a hole at the end of the green.

Keywords: Haptic feedback, IMU, Arduino, Processing simulation, 3D CAD, motor selection
A soccer match with bounding boxes overlaid on each player.
Multi-Object Detection for 2023 SoccerNet Player Tracking Challenge
Video | Report | Code

The SoccerNet challenge focuses on the analysis and comprehension of soccer videos. The task involves detecting multiple objects (MOT) from a single-camera soccer game and tracking their trajectories throughout the duration of the match.

Keywords: Object detection (Mask R-CNN, Faster R-CNN, YOLOv8, DETR, Segment Anything (SAM), Grounding DINO), object tracking (StrongSORT, OC-Sort, Byte-Track), PyTorch, Computer Vision, Deep Learning
A 3 degree of freedom Novint Falcon device is used to move a mouse away from the simulated robot arm trying to catch it.
Cat & Mouse Game
Video | Report | Code

An interactive game where the “cat”, a 7 degree of freedom Franka Emika Panda arm, uses a trajectory interception algorithm in order to chase and catch the user, a “mouse”, around an arena mapped by the robot’s reachable workspace. The user moves the "mouse" via a 3-DoF Novint Falcon haptic device which maps position to velocity in the virtual environment.

Keywords: Controller design (operational space, null space, proportional-derivative/PD), Haptic feedback, C++, SAI 2.0, teleoperation
An animation of an object's trajectory using the CCM-SLAM algorithm.
Overview of Centralized Collaborative Monocular SLAM (CCM-SLAM)
Presentation | Report

To experiment with the CCM-SLAM algorithm, we use the EuRoC Machine Hall dataset (Burri et al., 2016), which consists of multiple drones flying around the inside of a machine hall. Each drone is outfitted with a stereo camera, an onboard IMU, and an external laser tracker placed in the room to enable ground-truth trajectory acquisition. The drone data is packaged into ROSbags and played back to simulate the CCM-SLAM algorithm running in real time.

Keywords: Multi Agent Collaborative SLAM, ORB-SLAM, ROS 2.0, RViz, Visual Odometry
An animation of a ball rolling into a cylinder.
Dynamic analysis of a sphere rolling in a vertical cylinder
Report | Code

Analyze the dynamic behavior of a rigid ball as it is rolled into a cylindrical container with some initial tangential velocity.

Keywords: Python, Matplotlib, MotionGenesis, rigid body dynamics
A map of a simulated maze with waypoints for the Turtlebot to route to.
Navigating a turtlebot through a custom maze environment in Gazebo

Plan a trajectory for a turtlebot to navigate through a maze to reach waypoints while avoiding obstacles, obeying stop signs, and optimizing travel time.

Keywords: ROS 2.0, Gazebo, RViz, Turtlebot, motion planning (A*, RRT*), trajectory optimization, image detection (CNN)
An animation of a slotted acrylic disk being fitted into a robot wheel base.
C-STEM CPSBot: Cyber Physical Systems Robot

Designed modular robots to teach K-12 students in 100+ schools about robotic design and introductory programming, with an emphasis on Design for Assembly (DFA). Developed a quadrature encoder using a slotted, laser-cut, acrylic disk and photo interrupters to determine instantaneous robot velocity (verified via FEA and physical testing).

Keywords: Quadrature encoder design, laser cutting, rapid prototyping, Design for Assembly (DFA), Finite Element Analysis (FEA), SolidWorks CAD, 3D printing (FDM, SLA)
A video of a fingerprint activated door lock circuit.
Automated door lock with fingerprint sensor
Video | Report

Developed a functional demonstration and instruction set of an automated door locking system using an Arduino Uno microcontroller, stepper motors, LCD module, and fingerprint sensor.

Keywords: Arduino microcontroller, sensor integration, stepper motor control
A video of a chicken coop door opening and closing.
Automated chicken coop door
Poster |  Code

Designed and prototyped an automated chicken coop door that could identify unique chickens using RFID tags and ensure their presence in the coop after sunset using a photoresistor.

Keywords: Arduino microcontroller, sensor integration, DC motor driver, control logic, rapid prototyping
A video of the LabMatch solution finding good lab matches based on a user's research interests.
HackDavis 2019: LabMatch
Video | Webpage

LabMatch provides a tailored search solution for students and faculty members to connect regarding open research positions on campus. This web app was built in 24 hours and won the 'Best International Education Hack' award at HackDavis 2019.

Keywords: MongoDB, Express, React, Nodejs, Bootstrap Studio, responsive web design, HTML, CSS, JavaScript

Patents & Publications

An image of an electromagnet attracting a panel.
Electromagnetic latch for vehicle storage assembly | WO2023059624A1

This application relates to vehicle storage compartments, and more particularly relates to a storage compartment closure assembly for controlling latching of a compartment door on a vehicle.

Work Experience

Tesla spelled in red lettering.
Staff Mechanical Design Engineer, Tesla
July 2020 – Present

Led mechanical design of innovative interior structures, safety critical components, decorative trim elements, mechanisms, and storage compartments from initial concept through high-volume launch. Managed 4 direct reports. Filed 6 invention disclosures for novel designs.

Programs Supported:
- Model Y Structural Pack (Berlin & Austin)
- Cybertruck (temporary)
- Model 3 Upgrade
- Next-Gen Platform 🤫
An animation of the Teslaboards skateboard with larger tires for off-road performance.
Product Design Engineer, Teslaboards
January 2020 – June 2020

Designed and packaged an open differential drivetrain for an off-road consumer electric skateboard company based in Poland. Reduced mass by 38% with respect to previous generation board (17kg) and beat mass target by 19%. Achieved 27% increase in top speed, 0-25 mph acceleration in 5 sec, and smaller turning radius.

Key Skills: SolidWorks CAD, Finite Element Analysis (FEA), Failure Modes & Effects Analysis (FMEA), factorial Design of Experiments (DoE), concept selection matrix, trade study, product design cycle, low-volume part design, material selection, Design for Manufacturability (DFM), Design for Assembly (DFA)
Smith + Nephew logo spelled in orange lettering.
Mechanical Design Engineer, Tusker Medical
June 2018 – September 2018

Designed functional prototypes of a handheld surgical display that complemented Tusker Medical's TULA surgical tool and aided ENT (Ear, Nose, & Throat) physicians during a tympanostomy procedure. The models were designed to fit different LCD, battery, optics, and camera configurations, and also based upon anthropometric measurements/research to meet ergonomic constraints. Tusker Medical was acquired by Smith+Nephew in 2020.

Key Skills: SolidWorks CAD, LabVIEW, 3D printing (SLA), rapid prototyping, laser cutting, material selection, NI DAQ, quadrature encoder, circuit diagrams, PCB design, optics, ergonomic design



Co-founded a platform for mechanical & electrical engineers to prepare for technical job interviews. This was the first major technical interview resource in the hardware engineering space. Supported early content, forum deployment, UI design, and growth strategy. Reached 100k page views and 300+ signups through organic channels.

Status: Active


The Teslarati logo on a green background.
Subtle Mastery: The Magnetic Glove Box in the Tesla Model 3 Refresh
Article | Article

"The change makes sense considering Tesla’s attempts to reduce components in the new Model 3, and it also just appears satisfying to use. [...] The magnets allow the user a seamless closing experience [and] the glovebox looks slightly different than the pre-refresh Model 3, appearing to be a bit sleeker."
The UC Davis mechanical engineering department logo.
Making electric vehicles, autonomous fleets ubiquitous

"EQUIP helps UC Davis undergraduates develop an innovation mindset and experience entrepreneurship through interactive seminars."
The word "innovate" written in green lettering with an eyeball on the top right for the eye-related theme and 2019 in the bottom left for the date.
2019 Make-a-Thon Works to Make a Difference for People with Vision Impairments
Article Interview

"Organized and hosted by members of the UC Davis Chapter of the Biomedical Engineering Society, the annual event featured student teams creating computer models and working prototypes of medical devices for people with vision impairments."
Mercury News: Event for youth geared toward changing transportation habits

"The annual event, called Walk-One-Week, was started in 2009 by a Lawson Middle School student. In just two years, it grew to include 11 elementary and middle schools and garnered the support of the Cupertino City Council. Now in its sixth year, Walk-One-Week, is hoping to get at least 200 students from each participating school to join the movement."


My background is in automotive engineering, and I was impressed with the depth of research he performed during his design process. [...] Perhaps a great summary of both his technical and teamwork leadership on the project came from one of his peers, who indicated that Shail consistently offered to co-work on difficult tasks and that they appreciated his willingness to share his technical knowledge.

From my conversations with him, it became apparent that he has a rare combination of qualities that allow him to “hit the ground running” in a technical environment and make a significant contribution in a short period of time.

Patrick Gibson

Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of California, Davis

I’ve worked in injection mold and plastics for the automotive industry since 1985. Throughout my career, I’ve seen many young professionals enter this industry. Shail is one individual I’ve had the pleasure of working with who uniquely stands out. During our time of working together, Shail displayed great talents beyond his years. He was always prepared to discuss key topics, tackle tough tasks, and lead by action.

Based on my professional experiences and working relationship with Shail, I am absolutely confident he would be a tremendous asset to any organization of his choosing.

Tim Brown

Director of Business Development
Multi-Form Plastics Inc.

I worked with Shail for three years as part of the Cupertino Library Foundation Teen Council and the S^4-Super Summer Science Search Contest. Shail is a very perceptive leader and problem solver. He can see right through to the heart of an issue and then present a vision for creating a pathway to success. People around him naturally look to him for his wisdom and leadership skills.

He's a very dependable and intelligent person, who is also fun to be around thanks to his wit and engaging personality. He would be an asset to any organization.

Pam Marino

Teen Council Liaison
Cupertino Library Foundation

I had the opportunity to be Shail's staff advisor while he served on the City of Cupertino’s Teen Commission. This group of young leaders is selected through a formal interview process and is tasked with representing the youth of our City by advising City Council [on] teen related issues. Shail has exemplified leadership, maturity, and a high level of excellence during his tenure as a Teen Commissioner.

I have no doubt that he will excel in any future endeavors and I look forward to all of his achievements to come.

Dave Jahns

Teen Commission Liaison
City of Cupertino

Shail Trivedi was an outstanding intern for the Interiors Engineering department. His team had only amazing things to say about his work and personality. I'd highly recommend Shail for any job, but selfishly hope he returns to Tesla to continue helping us achieve our mission.

Chris Garinger

Vehicle Engineering Recruiter
Tesla Inc.