News & Events

25 Events and Talks were found.


  •  TALK   Threat Assessment and Semi-Autonomous Control of Manned and Unmanned Vehicles
    Date & Time: Monday, July 16, 2012; 2:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Karl Iagnemma, Director, MIT Robotic Mobility Group
    MERL Host: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • Operator error is a significant factor in a majority of manned and unmanned vehicle accidents. In this talk, a framework for semi-autonomous vehicle accident avoidance will be presented that has been shown to effectively mitigate collisions caused by operator error. The framework analyzes sensor data (from vision and/or LIDAR data) to identify "no go" regions in the environment, and automatically synthesize constraints on vehicle position. An optimal trajectory and associated control inputs are then found via linear or nonlinear model predictive control. The "threat" to the vehicle is quantified from various metrics computed over the optimal trajectory. A number of approaches for arbitrating between operator and control system authority, based on the predicted threat, will be discussed. Extensive simulation and experimental testing will be described for both manned and unmanned scenarios. Future directions in threat assessment and semi-autonomous control, based on the integration of vision-based sensing and active steering control, will also be discussed.
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  •  EVENT   ACC 2012 - Sponsored Session: Oppportunities at Mitsubishi Electric Research
    Date & Time: Wednesday, June 27, 2012; 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
    MERL Contact: Scott Bortoff
    Location: Montreal, Canada
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • In this session, MERL researcher Scott Bortoff will describe Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (MELCO)'s businesses, discuss mechatronics and controls research at MERL and describe opportunities for collaboration and employment. Areas of current research interest include optimal control especially of nonlinear and hybrid systems, model predictive control, nonlinear dynamical systems, and modeling and control of multi-physical heterogeneous systems. Research projects at MERL typically address fundamental problems that are industrially-motivated, and involve application of advanced control theory or dynamical systems theory to MELCO products resulting in new technology that is transferred into the corporate R&D laboratories for subsequent product development. Areas of current application include elevators, HVAC, power generation and distribution, satellites, robot manipulation, servo systems and laser processing systems. MERL has a tradition of open collaboration and hosts visitors and interns especially during the summer months when our population increases by 50%. Researchers and students who have an interest in collaboration, visits, sabbatical leaves or permanent employment are invited.
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  •  TALK   A Real-Time Algorithm for Nonlinear Model Predictive Control and Its Applications
    Date & Time: Monday, June 25, 2012; 10:30 AM
    Speaker: Prof. Toshiyuki Ohtsuka, Osaka University
    MERL Host: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • In this talk, a real-time algorithm for nonlinear model predictive control and its applications will be introduced. The continuation method is combined with an efficient linear solver GMRES to trace the time-dependent optimal solution without iterative searches. Applications of the algorithm include position control of an underactuated hovercraft, route tracking of a ship with redundant actuators, and path generation for an automobile. Automatic code generation by symbolic computation and other related topics will also be introduced.
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  •  TALK   Control Design with Uncertain Predictions in Autonomous Systems: Theory and Practice.
    Date & Time: Friday, March 16, 2012; 10:00 AM
    Speaker: Prof. Francesco Borrelli, UC Berkeley
    MERL Host: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • Forecasts will play an increasingly important role in the next generation of autonomous and semi-autonomous systems. In nominal conditions, predictions of system dynamics, human behavior and environmental envelope can be used by the control algorithm to improve safety and performance of the resulting system. However, in practice, constraint satisfaction, performance guarantees and real-time computation are challenged by the (1) growing complexity of the engineered system, (2) uncertainty in the human/machine interaction and (3) uncertainty in the environment where the system operates.

      In this talk I will present the theory and tools that we have developed over the past ten years for the systematic design of predictive controllers for uncertain linear and nonlinear systems. I will first provide an overview of our theoretical efforts. Then, I will focus on our recent results in addressing constraint satisfaction and real-time computation in nonlinear systems and large-scale networked systems. Throughout the talk I will use two applications to motivate our research and show the benefits of the proposed techniques: Safe Autonomous Cars and Green Intelligent Buildings.
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  •  TALK   Research and Development in JSK Robotics Lab, Univ. of Tokyo
    Date & Time: Thursday, March 8, 2012; 9:30 AM
    Speaker: Prof. Masayuki Inaba, Professor, Director of JSK Robotics Lab<br /> Department of Creative Informatics<br /> Department of Mechano-Informatics<br /> Graduate School of Information Technology and Science<br /> The University of Tokyo
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • This talk introduces a history and ongoing activities of the research and development in JSK Robotics Lab, The University of Tokyo including hand-eye coordination in rope handling, correlation-based tracking vision, vision-based robotics, wireless remote-brained approach, whole-body behaviors on humanoids, tactile deformable devices for robot sensor suit, musculoskeletal spined humanoids, power systems for human speed and torque perfomance, learning and assistive activities on HRP2 (Japanese Humanoid Robot Project Platform) and PR2 (Willow Garages's Personal Robot Platform for Open Source Robot Operating System:ROS), common software architecture in all JSK robots, and their mother environment for inherited research and development in JSK.
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