News & Events

1,233 News items, Awards, Events and Talks related to MERL and its staff.




  •  NEWS   MERL Researchers Demonstrate Robot Learning Technology at CEATEC'18
    Date: October 15, 2018 - October 19, 2018
    Where: CEATEC'18, Makuhari Messe, Tokyo
    MERL Contacts: Devesh Jha; Daniel Nikovski; Diego Romeres; Alan Sullivan; Jeroen van Baar; William Yerazunis
    Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Data Analytics, Robotics
    Brief
    • MERL's work on robot learning algorithms was demonstrated at CEATEC'18, Japan's largest IT and electronics exhibition and conference held annually at Makuhari Messe near Tokyo. A team of researchers from the Data Analytics Group at MERL and the Artificial Intelligence Department of the Information Technology Center (ITC) of MELCO presented an interactive demonstration of a model-based artificial intelligence algorithm that learns how to control equipment autonomously. The algorithm developed at MERL constructs models of mechanical equipment through repeated trial and error, and then learns control policies based on these models. The demonstration used a circular maze, where the objective is to drive a ball to the center of the maze by tipping and tilting the maze, a task that is difficult even for humans; approximately half of the CEATEC'18 visitors who tried to steer the ball by means of a joystick could not bring it to the center of the maze within one minute. In contrast, MERL's algorithm successfully learned how to drive the ball to the goal within ten seconds without the need for human programming. The demo was at the entrance of MELCO's booth at CEATEC'18, inviting visitors to learn more about MELCO's many other AI technologies on display, and was seen by an estimated more than 50,000 visitors over the five days of the expo.
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  •  EVENT   MERL is a Proud Sponsor of the Grace Hopper Celebration 2018!
    Date: Wednesday, September 26, 2018 - Friday, September 28, 2018
    MERL Contacts: Chiori Hori; Elizabeth Phillips
    Location: Houston, Texas
    Research Areas: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Machine Learning
    Brief
    • "MERL, in partnership with Mitsubishi Electric was a Gold Sponsor of the Grace Hopper Celebration 2018 (GHC18) held in Houston, TX on September 26-28th. Presented by AnitaB.org and the Association for Computing Machinery, this is world's largest gathering of women technologists. Chiori Hori and Elizabeth Phillips from MERL, and Yoshiyuki Umei, Jared Baker and Lien Randle from MEUS, proudly represented Mitsubishi Electric at the recruiting expo, that drew over 20,000 female technologists this year.
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  •  EVENT   Dr. Petros Boufounos is co-organizing workshop on the Intersection of Information Theory and Signal Processing
    Date: Sunday, October 28, 2018 - Friday, November 2, 2018
    MERL Contact: Petros Boufounos
    Location: Banff International Research Station (BIRS), Alberta, Canada
    Research Areas: Computational Sensing, Signal Processing
    Brief
    • Dr. Petros Boufounos, Prof. Stark Draper (U. of Toronto) and Prof. Yonina Eldar (Technion) are co-organizing a workshop on the intersection of Information Theory and Signal Processing. The 5-day workshop will take place Oct. 28 - Nov. 2 at the Banff International Research Station (BIRS) in Alberta, Canada. The workshop schedule includes invited talks from prominent researchers in the two fields, coming together from all over the world. Parts of the workshop will be streamed live through the BIRS website.
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  •  EVENT   MERL 3rd Annual Open House
    Date & Time: Thursday, November 29, 2018; 4-6pm
    MERL Contacts: Marissa Deegan; Elizabeth Phillips; Jeroen van Baar; Anthony Vetro
    Location: 201 Broadway, 8th floor, Cambridge, MA
    Research Areas: Applied Physics, Artificial Intelligence, Communications, Computational Sensing, Computer Vision, Control, Data Analytics, Dynamical Systems, Electric Systems, Electronic and Photonic Devices, Machine Learning, Multi-Physical Modeling, Optimization, Robotics, Signal Processing, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • Snacks, demos, science: On Thursday 11/29, Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs (MERL) will host an open house for graduate+ students interested in internships, post-docs, and research scientist positions. The event will be held from 4-6pm and will feature demos & short presentations in our main areas of research including artificial intelligence, robotics, computer vision, speech processing, optimization, machine learning, data analytics, signal processing, communications, sensing, control and dynamical systems, as well as multi-physyical modeling and electronic devices. MERL is a high impact publication-oriented research lab with very extensive internship and university collaboration programs. Most internships lead to publication; many of our interns and staff have gone on to notable careers at MERL and in academia. Come mix with our researchers, see our state of the art technologies, and learn about our research opportunities. Dress code: casual, with resumes.

      Pre-registration for the event is strongly encouraged:
      merlopenhouse.eventbrite.com

      Current internship and employment openings:
      www.merl.com/internship/openings
      www.merl.com/employment/employment

      Information about working at MERL:
      www.merl.com/employment
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  •  NEWS   MERL collaborates with MIT on heat management in compact fusion reactors
    Date: October 11, 2018
    MERL Contacts: Piyush Grover; Christopher Laughman
    Research Area: Multi-Physical Modeling
    Brief
    • A new approach to heat management in compact fusion reactors that emerged from a class at MIT, developed by graduate student Adam Kuang and 14 other MIT students, engineers from Commonwealth Fusion Systems as well as Piyush Grover and Chris Laughman from MERL, and Professor Dennis Whyte, was recently published in Fusion Engineering and Design. This solution was made possible by an innovative approach to compact fusion reactors, using high-temperature superconducting magnets. This method formed the basis for a massive new research program launched this year at MIT and the creation of an independent startup company to develop the concept. The new design, unlike that of typical fusion plants, would make it possible to open the device's internal chamber and replace critical components; this capability is essential for the newly proposed heat-draining mechanism.

      In the one-semester graduate class 22.63 (Principles of Fusion Engineering), students were divided into teams to address different aspects of the heat rejection challenge. These teams evaluated alternate concepts and subjected candidate designs to detailed calculations and simulations based, in part, on data from decades of research on research fusion devices such as MIT's Alcator C-Mod, which was retired two years ago. C-Mod scientist Brian LaBombard also shared insights on new kinds of divertors, and two engineers from MERL worked with the team as well. Several of the students continued working on the project after the class ended, ultimately leading to the solution described in this new paper.
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  •  EVENT   MERL hosts Workshops for 2018 American Modelica Conference
    Date & Time: Monday, October 8, 2018 - Thursday, October 11, 2018; 8am-5pm
    MERL Contact: Christopher Laughman
    Location: MIT Samberg Conference Center, Cambridge, MA
    Research Areas: Control, Multi-Physical Modeling
    Brief
    • The 2018 American Modelica Conference, the first North American conference focused on the Modelica multiphysics modeling language, will be held on Tuesday and Wednesday, October 9-10, 2018 at the Samberg Conference Center at MIT in Cambridge, MA. Chris Laughman, a team leader in the Multiphysical Systems and Devices group, is the local chair for the conference.

      This conference will feature over 40 papers and user presentations on the Modelica language and its application to a wide variety of problem domains, including thermofluid, aerospace, automotive, and energy systems. There will also be 2 keynote addresses by John McKibben (Proctor & Gamble) and Hilding Elmqvist (Mogram AB). Nearly 100 attendees from 11 different countries have already registered for the conference, and it promises to be a very educational experience.

      MERL is also hosting two free workshops on October 8 to provide opportunities to engineers looking to increase their familiarity with the language and its applications. An introductory workshop will be led by engineers from Modelon during that morning, and then a second workshop on the application of Modelica to building systems will be led by Michael Wetter from Lawrence Berkeley National Labs in the afternoon. MERL will also host a Modelica user meeting on October 11 that will provide more details and discussion about trends in the use and development of Modelica in the larger engineering community.
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  •  NEWS   MERL researcher gave an invited talk of polar coding at MIT Lincoln Laboratory in Boston Photonics Seminar Series
    Date: September 19, 2018
    Where: MIT Lincoln Laboratory
    MERL Contact: Toshiaki Koike-Akino
    Research Areas: Communications, Signal Processing
    Brief
    • Toshiaki Koike-Akino gave an invited talk on new trends of forward error correction codes based on polar coding at seminar series of IEEE Boston Photonics Society at MIT Lincoln Laboratory. The talk covered recent advancement of polar code design for ultra-high-throughput decoding, suited for future Tera-bit optical interconnects.
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  •  EVENT   SANE 2018 - Speech and Audio in the Northeast
    Date: Thursday, October 18, 2018
    MERL Contacts: Takaaki Hori; Jonathan Le Roux
    Location: Google, Cambridge, MA
    Research Area: Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • SANE 2018, a one-day event gathering researchers and students in speech and audio from the Northeast of the American continent, will be held on Thursday October 18, 2018 at Google, in Cambridge, MA. MERL is one of the organizers and sponsors of the workshop.

      It is the 7th edition in the SANE series of workshops, which started at MERL in 2012. Since the first edition, the audience has steadily grown, with a record 180 participants in 2017.

      SANE 2018 will feature invited talks by leading researchers from the Northeast, as well as from the international community. It will also feature a lively poster session, open to both students and researchers.
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  •  NEWS   Takaaki Hori leads speech technology workshop
    Date: June 25, 2018 - August 3, 2018
    Where: Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
    MERL Contacts: Takaaki Hori; Jonathan Le Roux
    Research Area: Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • MERL Speech & Audio Team researcher Takaaki Hori led a team of 27 senior researchers and Ph.D. students from different organizations around the world, working on "Multi-lingual End-to-End Speech Recognition for Incomplete Data" as part of the Jelinek Memorial Summer Workshop on Speech and Language Technology (JSALT). The JSALT workshop is a renowned 6-week hands-on workshop held yearly since 1995. This year, the workshop was held at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore from June 25 to August 3, 2018. Takaaki's team developed new methods for end-to-end Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) with a focus on low-resource languages with limited labelled data.

      End-to-end ASR can significantly reduce the burden of developing ASR systems for new languages, by eliminating the need for linguistic information such as pronunciation dictionaries. Some end-to-end systems have recently achieved performance comparable to or better than conventional systems in several tasks. However, the current model training algorithms basically require paired data, i.e., speech data and the corresponding transcription. Sufficient amount of such complete data is usually unavailable for minor languages, and creating such data sets is very expensive and time consuming.

      The goal of Takaaki's team project was to expand the applicability of end-to-end models to multilingual ASR, and to develop new technology that would make it possible to build highly accurate systems even for low-resource languages without a large amount of paired data. Some major accomplishments of the team include building multi-lingual end-to-end ASR systems for 17 languages, developing novel architectures and training methods for end-to-end ASR, building end-to-end ASR-TTS (Text-to-speech) chain for unpaired data training, and developing ESPnet, an open-source end-to-end speech processing toolkit. Three papers stemming from the team's work have already been accepted to the 2018 IEEE Spoken Language Technology Workshop (SLT), with several more to be submitted to upcoming conferences.
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  •  EVENT   Fourth Annual Celebrating "Women in Science" Luncheon
    Date: Thursday, July 19, 2018
    MERL Contacts: Marissa Deegan; Kerry McKeon; Elizabeth Phillips; Jinyun Zhang
    Location: MERL
    Brief
    • We hosted the 4th Annual "Women in Science at MERL," event on July 19th. This year we celebrated the contributions of the eleven female interns, three female researchers, and some female members of HQ staff. MERL executives, managers and researchers participated in the event. MERL's interns and researchers were asked probing questions about how they are fulfilled in their work and how they facilitate innovation. This resulted in every participant feeling as though they were moving their field of science forward. Everyone left feeling inspired.
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  •  NEWS   MERL Organizes session on Autonomous Vehicles at 2018 Conference on Control Technologies and Applications
    Date: August 21, 2018 - July 24, 2018
    Where: CCTA2018 Copenhagen
    MERL Contact: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Control
    Brief
    • MERL researchers Karl Berntorp and Stefano Di Cairano organized an industry session on Autonomous Vehicles at the 2018 Conference on Control Technologies and Applications, Aug. 21-24. (http://ccta2018.ieeecss.org/) They will present the main tutorial paper in the session. Such industry sessions are organized by researchers that are well established in terms of both academic relevance and real-world impact of their research.
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  •  NEWS   MERL researcher presented an invited talk and 2 papers at Advanced Photonics Congress 2018.
    Date: July 2, 2018 - July 5, 2018
    Where: Advanced Photonics Congress 2018
    MERL Contacts: Toshiaki Koike-Akino; Keisuke Kojima; David Millar; Kieran Parsons; Ye Wang
    Research Areas: Communications, Signal Processing
    Brief
    • Three papers from the Optical Communication team were presented at Advanced Photonics Congress, held at ETH Switzerland from 2-5 July 2018. One of the papers was an invited talk of MERL's recent advancement in high-speed reliable coded modulation schemes based on polar coding. The other papers are related to fiber nonlinearity mitigation techniques based on pulse-shaping filter optimization and deep neural networks.
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  •  NEWS   MERL demonstrated Advanced All-digital Transmitter at 5G Interactive Theater during International Microwave Symposium(IMS)2018 Week
    Date: June 13, 2018
    Where: Philadelphia, PA
    MERL Contacts: Rui Ma; Philip Orlik
    Research Areas: Communications, Electronic and Photonic Devices, Signal Processing
    Brief
    • Invited by IEEE MTT-S (Microwave Theory and Techniques Society), Researcher Dr. Rui Ma attended and presented MERL's cutting edge technology demonstration on real-time of multi-band All-Digital Transmitter at 5G Interactive Theater, which was held during IMS2018 in Philadelphia, PA on June 13th 2018. All-digital transmitter (ADT) is envisioned as a key enabling technology for next generation software defined radio.
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  •  NEWS   Stefano Di Cairano organizes and presents a tutorial on "Real-Time Optimization and Model Predictive Control for Aerospace and Automotive Applications" at the 2018 American Control Conference
    Date: June 27, 2018
    Where: American Control Conference, 2018
    MERL Contact: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Control
    Brief
    • MERL's Stefano Di Cairano, in collaboration with University of Michigan's Prof. Ilya Kolmanovsky have organized a tutorial session at the 2018 American Control Conference on "Real-Time Optimization and Model Predictive Control for Aerospace and Automotive Applications", and will present the main tutorial paper.

      Tutorial sessions are organized by researchers that are well established in terms of both academic relevance and real world impact of their research.
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  •  NEWS   Control and Dynamical Systems members to deliver 10 papers at American Control Conference
    Date: June 26, 2018 - June 29, 2018
    Where: ACC2018 Milwakee
    MERL Contacts: Heejin Ahn; Ankush Chakrabarty; Stefano Di Cairano; Uroš Kalabić; Rien Quirynen; Yebin Wang; Avishai Weiss
    Research Area: Control
    Brief
    • At the American Control Conference June 26-29, http://acc2018.a2c2.org/, MERL members will give 10 papers on subjects including model predictive control, embedded optimization, urban path planning, motor control, estimation, and calibration.
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  •  NEWS   Best doctoral dissertation award received by Visiting Research Scientist Thiago Serra
    Date: June 4, 2018
    Where: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
    MERL Contacts: Arvind Raghunathan; Thiago Serra
    Research Area: Optimization
    Brief
    • Thiago Serra, currently a Visiting Research Scientist in the Data Analytics group, has been awarded the Gerald L. Thompson Doctoral Dissertation Award in Management Science from the Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University. This is awarded each year to honor an outstanding doctoral dissertation involving theoretical, computational and applied contributions in the area of Management Science. One of the thesis chapters, "The Integrated Last-Mile Transportation Problem" was work performed at MERL in conjunction with Arvind Raghunathan during a summer internship. This work resulted in a patent application and will be presented at the 2018 International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling (ICAPS).
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  •  AWARD   Best Student Paper Award at IEEE ICASSP 2018
    Date: April 17, 2018
    Awarded to: Zhong-Qiu Wang
    MERL Contact: Jonathan Le Roux
    Research Areas: Speech & Audio, Artificial Intelligence
    Brief
    • Former MERL intern Zhong-Qiu Wang (Ph.D. Candidate at Ohio State University) has received a Best Student Paper Award at the 2018 IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech and Signal Processing (ICASSP 2018) for the paper "Multi-Channel Deep Clustering: Discriminative Spectral and Spatial Embeddings for Speaker-Independent Speech Separation" by Zhong-Qiu Wang, Jonathan Le Roux, and John Hershey. The paper presents work performed during Zhong-Qiu's internship at MERL in the summer 2017, extending MERL's pioneering Deep Clustering framework for speech separation to a multi-channel setup. The award was received on behalf on Zhong-Qiu by MERL researcher and co-author Jonathan Le Roux during the conference, held in Calgary April 15-20.
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  •  NEWS   MERL presenting 9 papers at ICASSP 2018
    Date: April 15, 2018 - April 20, 2018
    Where: Calgary, AB
    MERL Contacts: Petros Boufounos; Takaaki Hori; Toshiaki Koike-Akino; Jonathan Le Roux; Dehong Liu; Hassan Mansour; Philip Orlik; Pu (Perry) Wang
    Research Areas: Computational Sensing, Digital Video, Speech & Audio, Artificial Intelligence, Signal Processing
    Brief
    • MERL researchers are presenting 9 papers at the IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech & Signal Processing (ICASSP), which is being held in Calgary from April 15-20, 2018. Topics to be presented include recent advances in speech recognition, audio processing, and computational sensing. MERL is also a sponsor of the conference.

      ICASSP is the flagship conference of the IEEE Signal Processing Society, and the world's largest and most comprehensive technical conference focused on the research advances and latest technological development in signal and information processing. The event attracts more than 2000 participants each year.
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  •  NEWS   LOBPCG method of Andrew Knyazev used on the K computer in Japan for superconductivity research
    Date: March 20, 2018
    Where: Asian Conference on Supercomputing Frontiers
    MERL Contact: Joseph Katz
    Research Areas: Control, Optimization
    Brief
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  •  NEWS   Andrew Knyazev (MERL) presents at WPI SIAM Industry Speaker Series about his career path
    Date: April 19, 2018
    Where: Room 202 Stratton Hall Worcester Polytechnic Institute
    MERL Contact: Joseph Katz
    Brief
    • Andrew Knyazev, Distinguished Research Scientist of MERL, has accepted an invitation to speak at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) chapter of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) located in Worcester, MA, at a series of industry speakers about different career paths for applied mathematicians.

      Andrew Knyazev studied at the Department of Computational Mathematics and Cybernetics of the Moscow State University in 1976-1981. He obtained PhD Degree in Numerical Mathematics at the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) in 1985. Knyazev worked at the Kurchatov Institute in 1981-1983 and at the Institute of Numerical Mathematics RAS in 1983-1992, where he collaborated with Academician Bakhvalov (Erdos number 3 via Kantorovich) on numerical methods for homogenization. In 1993-1994, Knyazev held a visiting position at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences of New York University. From 1994 and until retirement in 2014, he was a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Colorado Denver (CU Denver), supported by many grants from the National Science Foundation and the United States Department of Energy. He was awarded the title of CU Denver Professor Emeritus and named the SIAM Fellow in 2016. During his 30 years in the academy, Knyazev supervised 7 PhD students. He is best known for his Locally Optimal Block Preconditioned Conjugate Gradient (LOBPCG) eigenvalue solver. In 2012, Knyazev starts his industrial research career joining Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories (MERL) in Cambridge, MA, where he invents and develops algorithms for control, machine learning, data sciences, computer vision, coding, communications, material sciences, and signal processing, having 11 US patent applications filed (6 issued, 5 pending) and over 20 papers published.
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