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Global Robotics Hub: How Pittsburgh Technology Companies are Disrupting Industries and Creating New Ones

Part of the PantherlabWorks Innovators Series presented by JPMorgan Chase

Pittsburgh has been called “Roboburgh,” but how are local robotics companies built and how do they thrive? How have local companies leveraged Robotics to automate mission critical, yet dangerous work? Join us for a dynamic panel discussion where we will explore:

  • Birth and growth of two dynamic local robotics companies solving complex problems
  • How leveraging automation can transform businesses from the earth to the moon
  • If the future is here now, what’s next?


  • Introduction: Jessica Sinclair (Director, PantherlabWorks)
  • Moderator: Justin Krauss (JPMorgan Chase)


  • John Thornton (CEO, Astrobotic)
    • John Thornton has grown Astrobotic’s business of delivering affordable space robotics technology and planetary missions by attracting technology contracts, equity investment, and payload customers. Under his leadership, the company has booked three lunar missions with its Peregrine, Griffin, and MoonRanger spacecraft. At Carnegie Mellon University, Thornton led the build of Scarab, a NASA concept rover for lunar drilling, and the first rover to carry a prototype of the NASA RESOLVE payload that will now be flying to the lunar south pole on the NASA VIPER rover aboard Astrobotic’s Griffin lander. Thornton also founded the Carnegie Mellon University Advanced Composites Lab, a research, training, design, and manufacturing program specializing in high performance, lightweight composites for robotics.
  • Jake Loosararian (CEO and Co-Founder, Gecko Robotics)
    • Jake Loosararian is the Co-Founder and CEO at Gecko Robotics, Inc., a company focused on making and using robots to predict infrastructure failure. Jake holds an Electrical Engineering degree from Grove City College and started Gecko during his time at school in 2013. Since then, Gecko has grown to over 130 employees providing services for the world’s largest Power, Energy and Manufacturing companies in the world such as Exxon, Chevron, BP, Shell, Duke Energy and the DOD. Gecko has raised $50M in funding from top VCs such as Founders Fund, Y Combinator and Drive Capital.
May 13, 2021
11:30 am - 12:30 pm
Webinar – registrants will receive link