Standards Committee



Craig Schlenoff portrait
Craig Schlenoff
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Gaithersburg (MD), USA
E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The Standing Committee for Standards Activities (SCSA) under the Industrial Activities Board (IAB) of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) has been actively working with the research and industrial communities and other Standards Developing Organizations (SDOs). The standardization efforts are formally being pursued under different Working Groups (WGs), with RAS as the official sponsor.

The Working Group for the IEEE/RAS Standard 1873-2015 for Robot Map Data Representation for Navigation will hold a meeting during ICRA 2016 on Monday, 16 May from 9:00-17:00 in Room 32 of the ICRA conference venue (Stockholm Waterfront Congress Center).

The main goal of the meeting is to solicit and discuss requirements from industrial and academic stakeholders for extending the current 2D standard for map data representation (MDR) to 3D maps. Based on the outcomes of the meeting, the working group will start developing extended specifications from the current specifications to be included in the IEEE-sponsored, official standard for 3D maps for robot navigation.

Since the room capacity is limited, please register your attendance to working group secretary Wonpil Yu: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Overview of agenda
- Location: Room 32, Stockholm Waterfront Congress Center
- Date: May 16 (Monday), 2016, 09:00-16:30
- 09.00-09.30 Welcome and introduction items
- 09.30-09.50 Dissemination of the current (2D) MDR standard specification
- 09.50-14.15 Invited talks: Industry requirements and use cases for 3D maps (lunch break included)
- 14.30-16.00 Discussion: Future directions for standardisation of map data representation
- 16.00-16.15 Next meeting

What is the MDR standard
The MDR standard aims to standardise a common representation and encoding for the map data used for navigation by mobile robots. The encoding will be used when exchanging map data between systems. The standard focuses on interchange of map data between components and systems, particularly those that may be supplied by different vendors. As well as the encoding, the standard aims to specify examples of APIs and protocols for the interchange process so that navigation-related components from multiple vendors may inter-operate.

What does the MDR standard not do
It does not aim to standardise the format of map data used internally in systems, such as for performing navigation calculations, obstacle avoidance, or for storage in a database. Vendors supplying robot components relevant to navigation who choose to conform to the standard may use any encoding they choose for internal representation, provided the map data is available in the standard encoding when accessed through the standard APIs.

What does the standard target
The MDR standard is aimed at mobile robots operating in both indoor and outdoor environments. No restrictions are placed on the complexity of the environment. Applications include, but are not limited to, factory logistics systems, defence and rescue robots, construction and mining robots, agricultural robots, household robots, and general service robots. Metric maps, topological maps, and combined metric/topological maps are supported equally by the standard. However, maps with dynamic information are not explicitly supported.

The current version of standard 1873-2015 is available at:


The goal of the IEEE-RAS Ontologies for Robotics and Automation Working Group (ORA WG) is to develop a standard ontology and associated methodology for knowledge representation and reasoning in robotics and automation, together with the representation of concepts in an initial set of application domains. The standard will provide a unified way of representing knowledge and will provide a common set of terms and definitions, allowing for unambiguous knowledge transfer among any group of humans, robots, and other artificial systems. To date, the working group has over 130 members containing a cross-section of industry, academia, and government, representing over twenty countries.

Location: Room 32, Stockholm Waterfront Congress Center, Stockholm, Sweden
Date: 13:00-17:00, 20 May 2016

The focus will be on the the recent work of the Industrial Robot Ontology study group. The chairs are:
Craig Schlenoff (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
Stephen Balakirsky (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
Sandro Fiorini (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
The WGs welcome your comments and participation in this standardization process. To be involved in the activities of the standards committee, neither RAS nor IEEE-SA memberships are mandatory.

Agenda for IEEE ORA WG:
13:00-13:30    Welcome and Status Update    Dr. Stephen Balakirsky
13:30-14:00    A Look Back at the IEEE ORA Effort    Dr. Craig Schlenoff
14:00-14:15    Workshop on Verification of Autonomous Systems Recap    Dr. Signe Redfield
14:15-14:45    Ontology-Driven Robotic Tasks: Application to Automotive Plug Sealing    Dr. Paulo Goncalves
14:45-15:00    Break
15:00-15:30    AdaLab semantics: reproducible protocols, dealing with uncertainties, representation of complex studies    Dr. Larisa Soldatova
15:30-16:00    Title TBD    Dr. Jacek Malec
16:00-17:00    Open Discussion    
17:00              Adjourn


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