Melissa Soderquist

Mentor: Dr. Scott Banks
College of Engineering
"I got involved in research to pursue my interests in both engineering and medicine, learn new concepts, advance my problem solving skills, and to challenge myself."


Mechanical Engineering



Research Interests

  • Biomechanics
  • Medical Devices

Academic Awards

  • University Scholars Program


  • Pi Tau Sigma
  • UF Pre-Med American Medical Student Association
  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers Mentoring Program


  • Equal Access Clinic Network
  • Health Outreach Quality Improvement Program
  • Organic Chemistry II Teaching Assistant

Hobbies and Interests

  • Photography
  • Painting

Research Description

Non-invasive Dynamic Muscle Tendon Force Measurement

This research seeks to non-invasively measure the tension in muscles in order to diagnose musculoskeletal problems, monitor post-surgical progress, and to validate computer models that allow new treatments to be developed. Current methods for quantifying muscle activity, namely EMG and ultrasound, do not provide accurate measures of muscle force. EMG (electromyography) is an indirect measure of muscle activity, and is extremely difficult to process in order to reliably indicate muscle force levels. Ultrasound can be used to quantify muscle and tendon stress states; however, it is a complex imaging technology for what is a simple mechanical system. This research seeks to use less complex technology to non-invasively measure tension in muscles.