In recent years, biomimetic technologies have emerged as a key theme in robotics research. Biomimetics has been employed to advance the development of cognitive and collaborative functionalities as well as improving the dexterous and versatile manipulation capabilities of
robots. This progress has been enabled by a multi-disciplinary approach, including new materials, bio-inspired actuators, human motor control, and AI algorithms. By mimicking natural creatures, robots can translate biological principles into improved artificial methods for perception, cognition
and cooperation, particularly for interactive tasks with humans. Such robots are able to support the disabled, take care of the elderly, and play with children in a more assistive and human-friendly manner.


Unfortunately, although biomimetic technologies have been investigated by roboticists in different fields, a comprehensive and holistic approach to integrate these separate advancements is missing. One might anticipate that far greater impact can be achieved when a co-robot is equipped
with biomimetic hardware and software for perception, cognition and control. For example, bionic manipulations may only be realized with multi-modal sensors that actively perceive their environment with signals as informative as those encoded biologically, under the guidance of skill
learning and task-planning methods. To help overcome these technological barriers and provide a cross-disciplinary platform for future advances, this special issue aims to integrate various research fields under the common background of biomimetic intelligent robotics.

This special issue will cover the subjects including intelligent sensors, biomimetic mechanical design, robotic cognition-related learning, bioinspired control, and human-friendly interaction. This issue will focus on recent progress and new multi-disciplinary biomimetic technologies that have practical potential and the potential for profound impact on the real world. We welcome submissions from all related topics in academic research and industry, including but not limited to the following:

  • Intelligent sensors (e.g., vision, tactile etc.) for perception and exploration
  • Mechanical design of biomimetic robots
  • Advanced multimodal sensing information fusion
  • Computational neuroscience of perception and action
  • Intelligent learning methods from a biomimetic view
  • Learning from Demonstrations
  • Bioinspired robotic learning and control
  • Applications of biomimetic robotics in industry, e.g., manipulation, robot assisted surgery.
  • Other related topics


Important Dates
1 February 2022- Submission deadline
1 May 2022- First decision to authors
15 June 2022- Revised paper
20 August 2022- Final acceptance decision
10 September 2022- Final manuscripts
20 September 2022- Guest Editorial Due
December 2022 Publication


Guest Editors:

Chenguang Yang
Professor Chenguang Yang

University of the West of England, UK.

Charlie.Yang@uwe.ac.uk

 

Shan Luo
Dr. Shan Luo

University of Liverpool, UK.

 shan.luo@liverpool.ac.uk

 

Nathan Lepora
Prof. Nathan Lepora

University of Bristol, UK.

n.lepora@bristol.ac.uk

 

Fanny Ficuciello
Dr Fanny Ficuciello

Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Italy

 fanny.ficuciello@unina.it

 

Dongheui Lee
Professor Dongheui Lee

Technical University of Munich, Germany

 dhlee@tum.de

 

Weiwei Wan
Dr Weiwei Wan

Osaka University, Japan

 wan@sys.es.osaka-u.ac.jp

 

Chun Yi Su
Professor Chun-Yi Su

Concordia University, Canada

 chun-yi.su@concordia.ca

Aim and Scope 

The home healthcare industry is under growing pressure of delivering services more  effectively within its already-stretched capacity. Especially, providing efficient, cost effective homecare for the growing number of older adults will require major changes in  ways providers gather information from and deliver care services to care recipients. As  many homebound older adults have been isolated in the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for innovations in the home healthcare industry is becoming more urgent. 

Robots are in a unique position to monitor, assess/evaluate, and prevent situations that  could put older adults at-risk. Research in robots, especially assistive robots and companion  robots, has been attracting growing interest in recent years. Robot-based homecare technologies can record health-related data with advanced sensors, and then automatically processthe data and provide personalized advice or automated actions. For healthcare workers, these technologies allow for more comprehensive monitoring and free them to address the more complex aspects of their work. These technologies also make possible individualized care that promotes independence and safety of the care recipients. 

The goal of this special issue is to provide readers an overview of the state of the art in  robot-assisted home healthcare, identify and promote the future research directionsin this  emerging field. By presenting the achievement and future opportunities in this  multidisciplinary research area that crosscuts robotics, automation, AI and healthcare, this  special issue will have great impact on the robotics and automation research community. 

Topics of interest 

  1. Hardware and software architectures of robot-based homecare 
  2. Theories and methodologies for robust robotic perception in home environments 3. Robot-based human activity monitoring 
  3. Robot-based physical health monitoring 
  4. Robot-based mental health monitoring 
  5. Robotic intervention for home healthcare 
  6. Medication adherence monitoring in home healthcare 
  7. Cognitive assessment and cognitive fitness for home healthcare 
  8. Robot companionship through natural language conversation 
  9. Root-assisted telehealth
  10. Rehabilitation and assistive robotics for homecare 12. Human-robot interaction in homecare robots 13. Privacy protection in homecare robots 
  11. Personalization and adaptation in homecare robots 15. Case studies of robot-based homecare 
  12. Human subject tests with homecare robots 
  13. Future research problems and trends  

Important Dates 

1 December 2021- Call for papers 

1 May 2022- Submission deadline

15 July 2022- First decision to authors 

1 September 2022- Resubmission 

15 October 2022- Final decision 

30 October 2022- Final manuscript upload 

30 November 2022 Guest editorial due 

March 2023 Publication 

 


Associate Editor

weihua sheng

Weihua Sheng 

Professor

School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK, USA 

weihua.sheng@okstate.edu 


Guest Editors

Hesheng Huang

Hesheng Wang 

Professor, Department of Automation,  

Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China 

wanghesheng@sjtu.edu.cn 

 

Yingzi Lin

Yingzi Lin 

Professor 

Intelligent Human Machine Systems Laboratory 

Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Bioengineering Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA 

yi.lin@northeastern.edu

 

Hirata

Yasuhisa Hirata 

Professor 

Graduate School of Engineering 

Department of Robotics 

Tohoku University, Japan 

hirata@srd.mech.tohoku.ac.jp 

 

Stefano Mazzoleni

Stefano Mazzoleni 

Assistant Professor 

Department of Electrical and Information Engineering Politecnico di Bari, Italy 

stefano.mazzoleni@poliba.it

 

Aim and Scope

Extended reality (XR), which combines the real and the virtual worlds, is greatly enhancing interaction possibilities between robots and humans, leading to a paradigm shift where the two entities can intuitively cooperate to perform a shared-target task. Many XR devices are essentially performing the same spatial perception tasks as mobile robots (e.g., visual simultaneous localization and mapping) and thus XR provides an opportunity for robots and the humans using these devices to colocalize through a common understanding of their space, which also enables easier human-robot interaction.

Extended reality interfaces can be realized through Augmented Reality (AR), where an operator’s perception of the real world is enhanced through the superimposition of virtual objects and information, Virtual Reality (VR), where the operator is immersed in a 3D virtual world, or Mixed Reality (MR), where the user can both see and interact with digital content that is superimposed over the real world. A key enabler of human-robot collaboration is the colocalization and shared spatial intelligence that AR and MR can provide. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted an unprecedented need for immersive platforms that can facilitate safer working conditions through tele-robotics control. Healthcare workers, for example, can use XR technologies to enable intuitive collaboration for remote perception and control, such as diagnosis, treatment planning or patient monitoring. In this context, research efforts have received a significant push towards realizing fascinating promises in several application fields, with extended reality being a prime contender to offer immersive experiences, even from remote locations. For instance, they can enable immersive remote inspection in dangerous environments.

This special issue will explore recent advances in AR, VR and MR for human-robot interactions in different application fields (e.g., healthcare, manufacturing, inspection in hostile environments, education, entertainment and retail). This is a unique opportunity to present recent results in this research field and discuss further possible target applications and development opportunities.

Topics

Augmented reality in robotics

Virtual reality in robotics

Mixed reality in robotics

Human-robot interaction

Industrial robotics

Medical robotics

Agricultural Robotics

Remote Maintenance Robotics

Space robotics

Situation/ context awareness

Remote control

Telerobotics

 

April 2021 - Call for papers

15 July 2021 - Submission deadline

15 September 2021 - First decision to authors

30 October 2021- Resubmission

1 December 2021 - Final decision

15 December 2021 - Final manuscripts upload

20 December 2021 - Guest editorial due

March 2022 - Publication

 

Guest Editors:

 elena di momi

Elena De Momi

Politecnico di Milano

Milan, Italy

elena.demomi@polimi.it

 

 Minor 200x200 2

Mark A. Minor

University of Utah, USA

mark.minor@utah.edu

 

 Paul Chippendale 2

Paul Chippendale 

Fondazione Bruno Kessler

Italy

chippendale@fbk.eu

 

  8DG2640 work2 f 2

Mahdi Tavakoli

University of Alberta

Canada

mahdi.tavakoli@ualberta.ca

 

 GiovanniRossini 1

Giovanni Rossini

Artiness

Italy

giovanni.rossini@artinessreality.com 

 

delmerico headshot 2

Jeffrey Delmerico

Microsoft Mixed Reality and AI Lab

Switzerland

Jeffrey.Delmerico@microsoft.com 

 

 Antonio Frisoli 2

Antonio Frisoli

Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna (SSSA)

Pisa, Italy

e-mail: antonio.frisoli@santannapisa.it

Aim and Scope

While automated vehicle are ready to evolve in restricted and dedicated areas, autonomous vehicles are still facing difficulties to sense, interpret and decide their actions when facing situations in different environments. Various environments concern offroad environment, shared environment, crowdy and human populated environment, Among the difficulties, the first one is to succeed in the task to sense and interpret the scene in order to be aware about the situation and its evolution. The second one is to deal with the uncertainty of modelling, sensing, interpretation in decision and control. The third one is to take into account human behavior as manual drivers, pedestrians or human using new electric mobility system. The most challenging is to the understand and incorporate the changes in the environment for long term and safe navigation. With the recent revival of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Data and Model driven approaches and algorithms offer the new opportunity to develop autonomous vehicles by improving their perception, Decision and control. This special issue aims to present the recent advances in Artificial Intelligence, Modelling, Perception, Decision and Control for extending the autonomy of robots. This is an opportunity to gather researchers in developing fundamental principles to discuss and share original research works and practical experiences. 

 

Topics 

 

Autonomous navigation  Semantic planning  Dynamic modelling Risk-based maneuver selection
Path Integral control Human vehicle interaction Real-time motion planning Safe navigation
Stochastic Control Unexpected events Decision making Risk Assessment
Robust control Learning & modeling behaviors Bayesian modelling
Model predictive control Situation awareness POMDP
Motion Planning Uncertainty modelling Integrity and Safety issues

 

Important Dates

1 February 2021 Submission deadline
1 May 2021 First decision to authors
15 June 2021 Revised paper 
20 August 2021 Final acceptance decision
10 September 2021 Final manuscripts
December 2021 Publication

 

 

Guest Editors

 

Marcelo Ang portrait
Marcelo Ang
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
National University of Singapore (NUS)
Singapore
Christian Laugier portrait
Christian Laugier
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
Inria Rhône-Alpes
Montbonnot-Saint-Martin, France
Roland Lenain portrait
Roland Lenain
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
French National Institute for Agriculture, Food, and Environment (INRAE)
Paris, France
Philippe Martinet portrait
Philippe Martinet
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (INRIA)
Sophia Antipolis, France
Cristina Olaverri-Monreal portrait
Cristina Olaverri-Monreal
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
Johannes Kepler University Linz - JKU
Linz, Austria
Danwei Wang portrait
Danwei Wang
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
Nanyang Technological University
Singapore
Ming Yang portrait
Ming Yang
Special issue on Autonomous Vehicle: Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control
University of Michigan- Shanghai Jiao Tong University Joint Institute
Shanghai, China

 

Paper Submission Authors are invited to submit papers bringing new contributions to the scientific field addressed by this Special Issue of RAS Magazine. 

Submission Guidelines Authors are encouraged to write scientific articles (8 pages). More details are given on the RAS-Mag webpage https://www.ieee-ras.org/publications/ram/information-for-authors-ram. Each submitted paper will be analyzed by at least three reviewers of RAS-Mag in order to assess its technical quality, relevance, results and contributions. Manuscripts must be submitted electronically at https://ras.papercept.net/journals/ra- mag/scripts/login.pl, by selecting "Special Issue on Autonomous Vehicles : Artificial Intelligence and Model based techniques in Decision and Control ". 

Aim and Scope

Rapid progress in Robotics, AI, Automation and IoT leads to an exponential growth of the number of connected intelligent systems, devices, robots and AIs. Current cloud-based approaches to Smart Cities, Smart Lands, Direct and Inverse Logistics (needed for the circular economy applications) and the likes show serious issues when implemented in a multivendor technologically heterogeneous market driven environment. Moreover, the centralization of data management by a small number of global hubs - that current cloud approaches require, raise concerns about citizens’ privacy and excessive data, capital and thus power concentration, for many countries of their borders.

 

The blockchain, a distributed ledger whose information is protected by a consensus algorithm, enables the creation of complex networks of heterogeneous robotic devices, smart sensors and AIs. Secure distributed computing and data storage platforms such as the Ethereum blockchain are already showing the opportunity to make robotic applications more responsive, secure and simplified in development. Blockchain technologies may play a pivotal role in the desired transition to smart society. There are numerous alternative options for the development of heterogeneous robotic applications based on the blockchain technologies. 

 

The aim of this Special Issue is to provide a reference on the state of the art and the opportunities and issues related to the development of very large multivendor multiplatform complex robotics, AI and Automation networks as expected in the Smart Cities, Smart Lands and Supply Chains of the future. We look for original research articles about recent advances in the applications of blockchain Robotics and Automation.

 

In the last couple of years, the editors have organized a few workshops on the topic, at the European Robotics Forum and IEEE RAS Ro-Man, plus two Symposia which were organized at the MIT Media Lab. 

 

Topics

 

• Blockchain for Robots and AI agent networked systems and IoT
• Smart Contracts for Robot Coordination
• Blockchain for Multi-Agent systems
• Blockchain and Industry 4.0
• Blockchain techniques for privacy and security for robotic systems in Smart cities, Smart Logistics, Smart X.
• Blockchain techniques for Privacy and security for Trustworthy Human Robot interaction
• Digital Markets for the Coordination of Large Multivendor Heterogeneous Networks of Robots in Smart Cities and Smart Economies 
• Blockchain for Swarm Robot application 
• Blockchain for Heterogeneous Decentralized Multi-Robot collaboration  
• Ethical and Cultural Issues

 

Important Dates

 

1 December 2021 - Submission deadline

15 January 2021 - First decision to authors

15 February 2022 - Resubmission

15 March 2022 - Final decision

25 March 2022 - Final manuscripts upload

31 March 2022 - Guest editorial due

June 2022 - Publication

 

Guest Editors

 

Fabio Bonsignorio 106001 

F. Bonsignorio

Heron Robots

Via Malta, 3/7

16121 Genova (Ge), Italy

tel: +39 339 84 06 011

fabio.bonsignorio@heronrobots.com, fabio.bonsignorio@gmail.com

 

Sooyong Park 108684

Sooyong Park

Professor at Sogang University

Director of Blockchain Research Center at Sogang University

Sogang University

35 Baekbeom-ro, Daeheung-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea

sypark@sogang.ac.kr

 

Eduardo Castello Ferrer 232839

Eduardo Castello-Ferrer

MIT Media Lab, 

75 Amherst St, Cambridge, 

MA 02139, USA

ecstll@media.mit.edu

 

Onder Gurcan 249806

Önder Gürcan

CEA LIST, University Paris Saclay

CEA Saclay-Nano-INNOV Bât. 862-PC 174

91191 Gif-sur-Yvette, France

onder.gurcan@cea.fr, onder.gurcan@gmail.com.

 

Aleksandr Kapitonov 215145

Alexander Kapitonov

ITMO University

Kronverksky Pr., 49, 197101

Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation

kapitonov.aleksandr@corp.ifmo.ru

 

The coronavirus pandemic has quickly become the most dramatic and disruptive event experienced by this generation.
The disease has spread very quickly around the world and the growing number of new infections and patients in need of intensive medical care has pushed clinical services care beyond their limits, revealing a shortage of trained personnel and lifesaving equipment, such as ventilators. In addition, frontline health professionals operate in highly infectious areas, exposing themselves to the risk of becoming infected. The most common political response to mitigate the spread of the disease has been to promote social distancing, and locking down entire countries. Although being effective, these measures impose heavy social and economic consequences.

 

All that has an impact on the perspective we can take on robotics and its progress. The robots’ possibilities for human replacement and remote operation in risky environments and tasks, as well as in proxying social interaction, have gained interest and value for potential help in the pandemic. Robotics and automation technologies are already playing a critical role in this crisis, since testing and life supporting equipment are in general automated, but in the past months we have seen the human creativity emerge in the fight against this pandemic, using robots in applications never seen before, such as helping to protect people by disinfecting risky environments, detecting disease, monitoring social distancing, providing remote care, promoting social interaction of confined patients, supporting remote work, delivering medical supplies to hospitals and goods to persons at home or in hard to reach places, etc.
These applications, which typically involve the deployment of robots in normal living environments, their operation by non-skilled personnel and the interaction with the common population, impose significant research challenges that need to be addressed and overcome. Additionally, the use of robots for the regulated fields of health care and for public safety as well as for interaction with common citizens raises ethical, safety and reliability concerns that also need to be carefully considered.

 

This special issue, edited by the IEEE RAS Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technologies (SIGHT), aims to present up-to-date results and innovative advanced solutions on how robotics and automation technologies are used to fight the outbreak, giving particular emphasis to works involving the actual deployments of robots with meaningful analysis and lessons learned for the robotics community. The editors will accept both conventional full length contributions and short contributions reporting practical solutions to the problem that have proven effective in the field. The topics of interest for paper submissions include, but are not limited to:

-autonomous or teleoperated robots for hospital disinfection and disinfection of public spaces.

-telehealth and physical human-robot interaction systems enabling healthcare workers to remotely diagnose and treat patients.

-hospital and laboratory supply chain robots for handling and transportation of samples and contaminated materials.

-robots use by public safety and public health departments for quarantine enforcement and public service announcements.

-social robots for families interacting with patients or with relatives in nursing homes.

-robots enabling or assisting humans to return to work or companies to continue to function.

-case studies of experimental use of robots in the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Important Dates:

 

May 2020 – Call for papers
14 August 2020 – Submission deadline
15 September 2020 – First decisions on manuscripts
30 October 2020 - Resubmission
30 November 2020 – Final decisions
10 December 2020 – Final manuscripts uploaded
March 2021 – Publication

 

Kaspar Althoefer portrait
Kaspar Althoefer
Editors- Special Issue on robotics response for the COVID-19 outbreak
Queen Mary University of London
London, UK
Cecilia Laschi portrait
Cecilia Laschi
Editors- Special Issue on robotics response for the COVID-19 outbreak
National University of Singapore
Singapore
Lino Marques portrait
Lino Marques
Editors- Special Issue on robotics response for the COVID-19 outbreak
University of Coimbra
Coimbra, Portugal
Robin  Murphy portrait
Robin Murphy
Editors- Special Issue on robotics response for the COVID-19 outbreak
Texas A&M University
College Station (TX), USA
Satoshi Tadokoro portrait
Satoshi Tadokoro
Editors- Special Issue on robotics response for the COVID-19 outbreak
Tohoku University
Sendai, Japan

special issue

CALL FOR PAPERS

This special issue will explore cutting-edge technologies in robotic grasping and manipulation that have gone further than pure research environments and are currently being tested or implemented in real-world scenarios. In particular, submission of joint works between industries and research centers in diverse application areas such as production lines, entertainment, medical devices, and human-robot collaboration are encouraged. The special issue will bring attention on the most recent applied advances in robotic manipulation and grasping, and most importantly, the main challenges addressed to transfer these technologies to the
productive world.

The main topics targeted with this special issue include, but are not limited to:
● New design paradigms for robotic hands and hand prostheses
● New control paradigms for robotic grasping and dexterous manipulation
● Artificial Intelligence applied to robotic grasping and manipulation
● Human-robot co-manipulation and handover: safety, ergonomy, ease of learning, and mutual understanding.
● Technology transfer challenges from research labs to industry in scenarios ranging from purely autonomous robotics to human-robot collaboration.
● Incorporating new paradigms into existing companies: do we need to restructure the working place for the new systems?
● Problems and solutions when integrating several existing research outputs into an overall working solution: description of successfully integrated systems and their working principles.

Important Dates:

  • September 1, 2020 - Submission deadline
  • October 18, 2020 - End of the first review round
  • October 28, 2020 - First decision recommendation to EiC by GEs
  • November 1, 2020 - First decision communicated to authors by EiC
  • December 15, 2020 - Revised paper submitted\Start of the second round of review
  • February 1, 2021 - End of the second review round
  • February 10, 2021 - Final decision recommendation to EiC by GEs
  • February 20, 2021 - Final acceptance decision communicated to authors
  • March 1, 2021 - Guest Editorial, Order of Publication and Cover Story\Pictures to EiC by GEs
  • March 10, 2021 - final manuscripts uploaded by authors
  • March 20, 2021 - final manuscripts forwarded to publisher
  • June 10, 2021 - issue mailed to all members

GUEST EDITORS
The Guest Editors will selectively choose the manuscripts showing cutting-edge technologies or complex integration solutions which are applied or being tested in real-world robotic grasping and manipulation scenarios. By selecting and disseminating these works we hope to bring attention to the latest related developments and encourage progress and collaborations between the academic and industrial communities.

 

Arash Ajoudani portrait
Arash Ajoudani
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
Insitituto Italiano di Tecnologia
Genova, Italy
Kensuke Harada portrait
Kensuke Harada
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Tsukuba, Japan
Osaka University, Osaka, Japan
Monica Malvezzi portrait
Monica Malvezzi
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
University of Siena and Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
Siena, Italy
Maria Pozzi portrait
Maria Pozzi
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
University of Siena and Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
Siena, Italy
Maximo Roa portrait
Maximo Roa
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
DLR - German Aerospace Center
Weßling, Germany
Leonel Rozo portrait
Leonel Rozo
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
Bosch Center for Artificial Intelligence (BCAI)
Renningen, Germany
Virginia Ruiz Garate portrait
Virginia Ruiz Garate
Special Issue on Emerging Paradigms for Robotic Manipulation: from the Lab to the Productive World
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT)
Italy

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
This special issue will be encouraged and supported from the EU H2020 projects of “SOPHIA” (no.
871237) and “INBOTS” (no. 780073), and the ERC Starting Grant “Ergo-Lean” (G.A: 850932).

Call for Papers

The past few years have seen a significant increase of research activities focusing on the use of active or inherent material compliance in robotic systems, generally known as soft robotics. The underlying reason is the importance of soft and deformable structures to develop robotic systems that are safer, cheaper and more adaptable than the level that can be achieved by the conventional rigid-material robots. Soft robotic systems are characterized by several unique aspects like their elastic and deformable bodies, large number of degrees of freedom, possible use of unconventional material and the involvement of intrinsic passive mechanical dynamics. In order to properly handle the characteristics, it is crucial to understand the modern view of intelligence, commonly referred to as embodied intelligence or morphological computation, which emphasizes the importance of the task distribution among the brain or controller of a robot, the morphology such as shape, size and materials composing the robot; as well as the environment. In this modern view of intelligence, optimizing the design of the soft robots are therefore of a great importance. While the design optimization can be either or both led by machines and/or humans, or taking inspiration from biological systems, it will eventually decide the behavior and characteristics of the robot.

The special issue of “Design Optimization of Soft Robots” in IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine aims to summarize the state of the art and disseminate the current advances on the design optimization of soft robots. The desired outcome of this special issue is a general consensus of the shared scientific goals, the relevant perspective and challenges in the research field, as well as high impact applications.

Topics of Interest

We invite both original research or review/position papers of topics related to design optimization of soft robots, both those focusing on the use of active compliance or inherent material compliance. The topics include but not limited to the followings:

  • Additive manufacturing for model-free design automation
  • Bio-inspired approaches for design optimization of soft robots
  • Brain-soft body co-optimization
  • Design of artificial skin and stretchable sensors
  • Design optimization for soft and safe physical human-robot interactions
  • Design optimization in continuum robots
  • Design optimization in soft arms, manipulation and grasping 
  • Design optimization in self-healing soft robots
  • Design optimization through modeling and simulation of soft bodies
  • Morphological computation and embodied intelligence
  • Optimizing soft actuator design
  • Soft modular robots
  • Soft robot design optimization for energy efficiency
  • Wearable robots design optimization

Important Dates

1 March 2020 - Submission deadline

17 April 2020 - End of the first review round

24 April 2020 - First decision recommendation to EiC by GEs

1 May 2020 - First decision communicated to authors by EiC

15 June 2020 - Revised paper submitted\Start of the second round of review

1 August 2020 - End of the second review round

10 August 2020 - Final decision recommendation to EiC by GEs

20 August 2020 - Final acceptance decision communicated to authors

1 September 2020 - Guest Editorial, Order of Publication and Cover Story\Pictures to EiC by GEs

10 September 2020 - final manuscripts uploaded by authors

20 September 2020 - final manuscripts forwarded to publisher

10 December 2020 - issue mailed to all members

 

Guest Editors

Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots

Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots

Dario Floreano portrait
Dario Floreano
Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL)
Lausanne, Switzerland
Fumiya Iida portrait
Fumiya Iida
Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots
University of Cambridge
Cambridge, UK
Jeffrey Lipton portrait
Jeffrey Lipton
Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots
University of Washington
Seattle, Washington, USA
Surya Nurzaman  portrait
Surya Nurzaman
Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots
Monash University
School of Engineering, Malaysia
Daniela Rus portrait
Daniela Rus
Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Cambridge (MA), USA
Liyu Wang portrait
Liyu Wang
Special Issue on Design Optimization of Soft Robots
University of California Berkeley
Berkeley, California, USA

 

Submission Procedures

Papers submitted to the Special Issue will undergo the usual reviewing process of IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine. For further information on this Special Issue, please refer to the web site of the IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine.

Call for Papers

Deep learning and Machine Learning have gone through a massive growth in the past several years. In many domains, such as perception, vision, image recognition, image captioning, speech recognition, machine translation, and board games, in particular, deep learning has drastically outperformed traditional methods and overtaken them to become the method of choice. Will the same happen to robotics and automation? These approaches typically require massive amounts of labeled data, i.e., big data, and massive amounts of compute. In many real robotics and automation applications data is abundant but labeling sparse and expensive. (Deep) reinforcement learning often requires significantly more iterations than are feasible on real systems. Hence collecting sufficient amounts of data is impractical at best. Therefore, a lot of work is done in purely digital or virtual environments. In this special issue we will focus on approaches that have been validated on real world robots, scenarios, and automation problems. While a lot of progress has been achieved on this front in robotic and automation applications, still a lot of progress needs to be made in order to render deep learning approaches directly applicable. Robots and automation systems are interacting with the real world. Hence mistakes that might be costly in terms of lost revenue in approaches that operate in a purely digital world, can cause significant damage and loss of human lives. Therefore, safe learning becomes paramount. A related issue is interpretable learning, i.e. the capability to interpret learning processes, moving towards approaches where humans have the option to be in control and understand with sufficient human-readable details the decision processes of the machine. Successful applications in ‘neighboring’ fields characterized by limited amounts of sparse, labeled data coming from physical systems will also be considered.

Papers should follow the standard RAM guidelines. A full peer-review process will be utilized to select papers for the special issue. Submissions should be made through the RAM submission website by August 1, 2019.

Contributions are expected to present original research on deep learning and machine learning with real world applications in robotics and automation.

Topics of Interest

  • deep/machine learning
    • supervised
    • unsupervised
    • reinforcement
  • sample efficient learning
    • new methods
    • use of models
    • simulation to real transfer
    • data augmentation
    • embedding prior knowledge
  • safe learning
    • confidence estimates
    • guarantees
    • verification
    • interpretable learning
  • real applications and use case scenarios of deep/machine learning
    • robotics
      • perception
      • control
      • planning
      • navigation
      • manipulation and grasping
    • automation
      • maintenance and inspection
      • production
      • quality management and assurance
      • product tracking
    • success stories of deep/machine learning technologies in robotics and automation
    • common issues and solutions in deep/machine learning applications in robotics and automation and neighboring fields such as:
      • gravitational waves detection
      • geophysics
      • high energy physics

Tentative Schedule/Important Dates

15 September 2019  1 August 2019 - Submission deadline EXTENDED
15 November 2019  1 November 2019 - First decision communicated to authors EXTENDED
1 January 2020 15 December 2019 - Revised paper submitted EXTENDED
20 February 2020 - Final acceptance decision communicated to authors
10 March 2020 - Final manuscripts uploaded by authors
10 June 2020 - Special issue

Guest Editors

Special Issue- Deep Learning and Machine Learning in Robotics Guest Editors

Special Issue on Deep Learning and Machine Learning in Robotics

Fabio Bonsignorio portrait
Special Issue on Deep Learning and Machine Learning in Robotics
Heron Robots and Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna, Italy
Italy
David Hsu portrait
Special Issue on Deep Learning and Machine Learning in Robotics
National University of Singapore
Singapore
Matthew Johnson-Roberson portrait
Special Issue on Deep Learning and Machine Learning in Robotics
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
Jens  Kober portrait
Special Issue on Deep Learning and Machine Learning in Robotics
Delft University of Technology
Delft, Netherlands

Topical Area

We are pleased to invite you to submit your research to the upcoming special issue on ”Humanoid robot applications in real world scenarios”, to be published in the IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine.

Humanoid robotics is a key challenge due to the inherent complexity of locomotion, balancing and interaction with humans or unknown environments. Striving to overcome these difficulties, companies, international competitions and research projects have highlighted the potential of bipedal technologies and demonstrated how it is now approaching the level of maturity required for autonomous operation in unstructured environments.

For example, Airbus, inside the COMANOID project, pointed out how other mobile robot designs did not apply to their use case, either because the base of support is too large or the mobility is limited to known environments. Consequently, bipedal humanoid robots became the de facto best viable solution for now. Meanwhile, Honda has advanced its humanoid robot technologies for disaster intervention with the E2-DR prototype and, in the same direction, the WALK-MAN EU Project developed a humanoid robot in collaboration with the Italian Civil Protection to intervene in hazardous environments. Boston Dynamics made available the Atlas robot to participants to the DARPA Robotics Challenge and recently demonstrated extraordinary dynamic motion capabilities, inside and outside the lab, using an upgraded version of the platform. The figure below shows other examples of advanced humanoid platforms E2-DR, HRP-4, TALOS and TORO, that have been showcased as mature enough to perform tasks in real and unstructured environments.

An increasing number of companies and research institutes are now developing middle and large size humanoid robots for different purposes. International projects aim to use these bipeds as human coworkers for industrial manufacturing and warehouse tasks, or tele-operated for inspection and intervention in hazardous environments. These scenarios require advanced locomotion and in-teraction capabilities which are being addressed, not only with classical stiff position control, but also with advanced compliant torque/force control.


Call for Papers

This special issue on humanoid robot applications in real world scenarios will make the research community aware of the latest and upcoming trends in this field, which is becoming increasingly appealing to industrial companies, includ-ing actors that were not previously involved in robotics.

In particular, the special issue will report the current state of the art and analyze open issues with the aim of sharing common experience and propose future directions to open problems.

The special issue will target papers in the following research areas:

  • real applications and use case scenarios of humanoid bipedal robots
  • hardware design for harsh environments
  • whole-body multi-contact planning and control for real world applications
  • loco-manipulation strategies in dynamic environments
  • agile motion generation and control of humanoid robots
  • performance benchmarking for bipedal robots
  • success stories of humanoid technologies
A IEEE RAM Special Issue on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World B IEEE RAM Special Issue on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World C IEEE RAM Special Issue on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World D IEEE RAM Special Issue on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World E IEEE RAM Special Issue on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World F IEEE RAM Special Issue on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World

Figure 1: a. HRP-4 and TORO robots, from Kawada Industries and DLR respectively, both applied to aircraft manufacturing scenarios as part of the H2020 EU Project COMANOID, b. Atlas, Boston Dynamics, in a warehouse box-handling scenario, c. Talos, from PAL Robotics, involved in the EU Project MEMMO d. and e. respectively ASIMO, performing weekly public demonstrations in Tokyo, and newly-developed humanoid robot E2-DR for disaster response, both from Honda f. the WALK-MAN robot during the execution of a task in a reconstructed disaster scenario.

Important Dates

15 March 2019: submission deadline
25 April 2019: end of the first review round
5 May 2019: first decision recommendation to EiC by GEs
12 May 2019: first decision communicated to authors by EiC
15 July 2019: revised paper submitted/start of the second round of review
15 August 2019: end of the second review round
10 August 2019: final decision recommendation to EiC by GEs
20 August 2019: final acceptance decision communicated to authors
1 September 2019: Guest Editorial, Order of Publication and Cover Story/Pictures to EiC by GEs
10 September 2019: final manuscripts uploaded by authors
20 September 2019: final manuscripts forwarded to publisher
10 December 2019: issue mailed to all members

Guest Editors

Guest Editors will select those contributions that apply humanoid robotics technology with clear practical applications. Through the selection of the recent and advanced contribution in this field, we hope to raise awareness and excite-ment in both the academic and industrial communities around the opportunities challenges offered by humanoid robotics.

Stephane Caron portrait
SI on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World Scenarios
CNRS-UM LIRMM
Montpellier, France
Francesco Ferro portrait
SI on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World Scenarios
PAL Robotics
Barcelona, Spain
Enrico Mingo Hoffman portrait
SI on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World Scenarios
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
Genoa, Italy
Luis Sentis portrait
SI on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World Scenarios
University of Texas at Austin
Austin (TX), USA
Nikos Tsagarakis portrait
SI on Humanoid Robot Applications in Real World Scenarios
Istituto Italiano Di Tecnologia
Genova, Italy

Call for Papers

 

AnDy Photo

Wearable robots have the potential to improve our lives in countless ways. People with weakened limbs can use exoskeletons to augment their strength or to retrain lost motor abilities, thus allowing them to nonetheless successfully perform activities of daily living. Similarly, workers of the future could use wearable robots to manipulate bigger and heavier loads, avoid injuries, and receive augmented feedback to enhance performance. Finally, wearable robots could even be used in sports, allowing wearers to move faster and farther.

Unfortunately, despite extensive research in this area, most wearable robots remain limited to controlled laboratory conditions. This is due to several reasons: insufficiently robust mechanical design and control, excessive weight or power consumption, insufficient evaluations with human subjects, unclear cost-effectiveness and other issues. However, these barriers are not insurmountable, and there are many opportunities for innovative solutions from research groups worldwide.

This special issue aims to bring wearable robots closer to broad real-world adoption by highlighting the latest innovations in the development of robust, intelligent wearable robots and their evaluations in real-world scenarios. It will focus on papers about working systems that are ideally evaluated with human subjects in order to determine the technology’s practical potential and impact on people with disabilities, workers, sportsmen, and others. Papers on stationary wearable robots will not be considered, though papers may be accepted if they describe the transfer of knowledge from stationary to wearable robotic technologies.

SPEXOR Photo

Papers should follow the standard RAM guidelines. A full peer-review process will be utilized to select papers for the special issue. Submissions should be made through the RAM submission website by 1 May 2019.This special issue aims to bring wearable robots closer to broad real-world adoption by highlighting the latest innovations in the development of robust, intelligent wearable robots and their evaluations in real-world scenarios. It will focus on papers about working systems that are ideally evaluated with human subjects in order to determine the technology’s practical potential and impact on people with disabilities, workers, sportsmen, and others. Papers on stationary wearable robots will not be considered, though papers may be accepted if they describe the transfer of knowledge from stationary to wearable robotic technologies. 

***The above photos are from the GEs’ wearable robotics work that can be used as part of the call for papers. One is from the An.Dy project (http://andy-project.eu/) while the other is from the SPEXOR project (http://www.spexor.eu/).

 Topics of Interest 

  • Mechanical design of robust wearable robots
  • Collaborative control strategies for such wearable robots
  • Reducing power consumption in wearable robots
  • Human subjects evaluations of existing wearable robots in lab and real-world settings
  • Human factors issues in real-world scenarios
  • Impact of wearable robots on human productivity and quality of life
  • Lessons learned when transferring wearable robots to different applications
  • Cost-benefit analyses of wearable robots

 

Important Dates

March 2019 - Call for papers
1 May 2019 - Submission deadline
1 August 2019 - First decisions on manuscripts
November 2019 - Final decisions on manuscripts
December 2019 - Final manuscripts uploaded
March 2020 - Publication

Guest Editors

Jan Babič portrait
Jan Babič
Special Issue on Wearable Robotics
Jožef Stefan Institute
Ljubljana, Slovenia
Domen Novak portrait
Domen Novak
Special Issue on Wearable Robotics
University of Wyoming
Laramie (WY), USA
Carlos Rodriguez Guerrero portrait
Carlos Rodriguez Guerrero
Special Issue on Wearable Robotics
Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Brussels, Belgium

1 Guest editors (GEs)

Domen Novak, University of Wyoming, dnovak1@uwyo.edu , PIN: 125995 (corresponding)

Carlos Rodriguez Guerrero, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, carlos.rodriguez.guerrero@vub.ac.be , PIN: 184362

Jan Babič, Jožef Stefan Institute, jan.babic@ijs.si , PIN: 107479

2 Updated timeline

Call for papers: March 2019
Submission deadline: May 1, 2019
First decisions on manuscripts: August 1, 2019
Final decisions on manuscripts: November 2019
Final manuscripts uploaded: December 2019
Publication: March 2020

4 Call for papers

Wearable robots have the potential to improve our lives in countless ways. People with weakened limbs can use exoskeletons to augment their strength or to retrain lost motor abilities, thus allowing them to nonetheless successfully perform activities of daily living. Similarly, workers of the future could use wearable robots to manipulate bigger and heavier loads, avoid injuries, and receive augmented feedback to enhance performance. Finally, wearable robots could even be used in sports, allowing wearers to move faster and farther.

Unfortunately, despite extensive research in this area, most wearable robots remain limited to controlled laboratory conditions. This is due to several reasons: insufficiently robust mechanical design and control, excessive weight or power consumption, insufficient evaluations with human subjects, unclear cost-effectiveness and other issues. However, these barriers are not insurmountable, and there are many opportunities for innovative solutions from research groups worldwide.

This special issue aims to bring wearable robots closer to broad real-world adoption by highlighting the latest innovations in the development of robust, intelligent wearable robots and their evaluations in real-world scenarios. It will focus on papers about working systems that are ideally evaluated with human subjects in order to determine the technology’s practical potential and impact on people with disabilities, workers, sportsmen, and others. Papers on stationary wearable robots will not be considered, though papers may be accepted if they describe the transfer of knowledge from stationary to wearable robotic technologies.

Papers should follow the standard RAM guidelines. A full peer-review process will be utilized to select papers for the special issue. Submissions should be made through the RAM submission website by May 1, 2019.

The topics of interest include but are not limited to:
- Mechanical design of robust wearable robots
- Collaborative control strategies for such wearable robots
- Reducing power consumption in wearable robots
- Human subjects evaluations of existing wearable robots in lab and real-world settings
- Human factors issues in real-world scenarios
- Impact of wearable robots on human productivity and quality of life
- Lessons learned when transferring wearable robots to different applications
- Cost-benefit analyses of wearable robots

4.1 Potential photos for call for papers

We have attached two photos from the GEs’ wearable robotics work that can be used as part of the call for papers. One is from the An.Dy project (http://andy-project.eu/) while the other is from the SPEXOR project (http://www.spexor.eu/).

Summary and Motivation

Demographic changes bring to light new challenges and issues to ensure care of an increasingly aging society with an unmet demand for dedicated professionals and increasing cost pressure. Moreover, statistics show that the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) among children is continuously increasing (as of 2017, in Japan 161 children per 10,000 children, in UK 94 children per 10,000 children, in USA 66 children per 10,000 children). Furthermore, according to the World Health Organization, 15 million people suffer stroke worldwide each year and stroke is the leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States. In addition to these, there are also many other diseases and disorders such as obesity, Parkinson disease, etc. (this list is far from being exhaustive). All these vulnerable populations need long-term personalized assistive care and, due to serious shortage of health care professionals, socially assistive robots have been shown as a viable complementary tools to address this need.

 


Image Credits: Maya Association - Nao in interaction with a child with autism (left image) and ENRICHME project- TiaGO robot in interaction with an elderly person suffering of MCI (right image)

The goal of socially assistive robotics (SAR) is enabling robots with the ability to help people through social interaction in a non-contact manner during their daily tasks, in rehabilitation, training, and education. This special issue is intended to collect the state-of-the-art as well as recent novel results in the field of socially assistive robotics.

 

Call for Papers

Continuous new developments in robotics allow an increase in the introduction of robots in our daily life. The optimal assistive robot should share a human centered environment, be able to cope with human presence, interact in a very engaging way, monitor the human’s behavior, provide useful feedback, adapt to the human’s profile over time, allow for long-term interaction, etc. Moreover, interacting with vulnerable populations is also very challenging and introduces new issues such as empathy, paternalism, etc.

This special issue aims to present state-of-the-art and recent advances in socially assistive robotics for various target populations (i.e., the elderly, people suffering of autism, stroke, Parkinson disease, etc.).

 

Topics relevant to this special issue includes, but are not limited to:

  • Long-term interaction
  • Machine learning for adaptive and personalized interaction
  • Multimodal perception for human behavior modelling
  • Performance indicators for HRI in assistive robotics
  • Empathy, trust, and acceptance in assistive robotics
  • Ethical issues and principles for assistive robotics
  • Data sharing and benchmarking HRI for assistive robotics
  • And others.

 

Guest Editors

Prof. Adriana Tapus, Autonomous Systems and Robotics Lab, ENSTA ParisTech, France (adriana.tapus@ensta-paristech.fr)
Prof. Ayanna Howard, Human-Automation Systems Lab (HumAnS), Georgia Tech, USA
(ah260@gatech.edu)
Dr. Isamu Kajitani, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Japan (isamu.kajitani@aist.go.jp )

Tentative Schedule/Important Dates

10 June 2018 - Call for papers
1 August 2018- Submission deadline
1 October 2018 - Notification of Acceptance
15 October 2018 –Preliminary/Final recommendation to EiC
1 November 2018 – Notifications to authors by EiC
15 December 2018 – Deadline for rebuttal
1 February 2019 – End of second review round
15 February 2019 – Final recommendation to EiC
1 March 2019 – Notifications to authors by EiC
1 March 2019 – Guest editorial submitted to EiC
15 March 2019 – Final submission and forward to publisher
10 June 2019 – Special Issue

 

Short Bio of the Guest Editors:

Prof. Adriana Tapus is Full Professor in the Autonomous Systems and Robotics Lab in the Computer Science and System Engineering Department (U2IS), at ENSTA-ParisTech, France. In 2011, she obtained the French Habilitation (HDR) for her thesis entitled “Towards Personalized Human-Robot Interaction”. She received her PhD in Computer Science from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland in 2005 and her degree of Engineer in Computer Science and Engineering from Politehnica University of Bucharest, Romania in 2001. She worked as an Associate Researcher at the University of Southern California (USC), where she was among the pioneers on the development of socially assistive robotics, also participating to activity in machine learning, human sensing, and human-robot interaction. Her main interests are on long-term learning (i.e. in particular in interaction with humans), human modeling, and on-line robot behavior adaptation to external environmental factors. Prof. Tapus is an Associate Editor for International Journal of Social Robotics (IJSR), ACM Transactions on Human-Robot Interaction (THRI), and IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems (TCDS) and in the steering committee of several major robotics conferences (General Chair 2019 of HRI, Program Chair 2018 of HRI, General Chair 2017 of ECMR). She has more than 150 research publications and she received the Romanian Academy Award for her contributions in assistive robotics in 2010. She was elected in 2016 as one of the 25 women in robotics you need to know about. She's also the PI of various EU and French National research grants. Further details about her research and her activities can be found at http://www.ensta-paristech.fr/~tapus .


Prof. Ayanna Howard is the Linda J. and Mark C. Smith Professor and Chair of the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Howard’s career focus is on intelligent technologies that must adapt to and function within a human-centered world. Her work, which encompasses advancements in AI, assistive technologies, and robotics, has resulted in over 200 peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Howard received her B.S. in Engineering from Brown University, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California. To date, her unique accomplishments have been highlighted through a number of awards and articles, including highlights in USA Today, Upscale, and TIME Magazine, as well as being recognized as one of the 23 most powerful women engineers in the world by Business Insider. In 2013, she also founded Zyrobotics, which is currently licensing technology derived from her research and has released their first suite of STEM educational products to engage children of all abilities. Prior to Georgia Tech, Dr. Howard was a senior robotics researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She has also served as the Associate Director of Research for the Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines, Chair of the Robotics Ph.D. program, and the Associate Chair for Faculty Development in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech.


Dr. Isamu Kajitani is Senior Researcher in the Service Robotics Research Team (SRRT) in the Robot Innovation Research Center (RIRC), at National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan. In 1999, he received his PhD in Engineering from University of Tsukuba Graduate School Division of Engineering, Japan in 1999. His research interests include assistive-product, prosthetic hand, service robot, social acceptance of such products, and applied behavior analysis. Further details about his research and his activities can be found at https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3178-9388

Summary and Motivation

Demographic changes bring to light new challenges and issues to ensure care of an increasingly aging society with an unmet demand for dedicated professionals and increasing cost pressure. Moreover, statistics show that the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) among children is continuously increasing (as of 2017, in Japan 161 children per 10,000 children, in UK 94 children per 10,000 children, in USA 66 children per 10,000 children). Furthermore, according to the World Health Organization, 15 million people suffer stroke worldwide each year and stroke is the leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States. In addition to these, there are also many other diseases and disorders such as obesity, Parkinson disease, etc. (this list is far from being exhaustive). All these vulnerable populations need long-term personalized assistive care and, due to serious shortage of health care professionals, socially assistive robots have been shown as a viable complementary tools to address this need.

 Socially Assistive Robotics 2.jpg  Socially Assistive Robotics 1

 

  

 


Image Credits: TiaGO robot in interaction with an elderly person suffering of MCI (left image). Maya Association - Nao in interaction with a child with autism (right image) and ENRICHME project.

The goal of socially assistive robotics (SAR) is enabling robots with the ability to help people through social interaction in a non-contact manner during their daily tasks, in rehabilitation, training, and education. This special issue is intended to collect the state-of-the-art as well as recent novel results in the field of socially assistive robotics.

Call for Papers

Continuous new developments in robotics allow an increase in the introduction of robots in our daily life. The optimal assistive robot should share a human centered environment, be able to cope with human presence, interact in a very engaging way, monitor the human’s behavior, provide useful feedback, adapt to the human’s profile over time, allow for long-term interaction, etc. Moreover, interacting with vulnerable populations is also very challenging and introduces new issues such as empathy, paternalism, etc.

This special issue aims to present state-of-the-art and recent advances in socially assistive robotics for various target populations (i.e., the elderly, people suffering of autism, stroke, Parkinson disease, etc.).

 Topics of Interest

  • Long-term interaction
  • Machine learning for adaptive and personalized interaction
  • Multimodal perception for human behavior modelling
  • Performance indicators for HRI in assistive robotics
  • Empathy, trust, and acceptance in assistive robotics
  • Ethical issues and principles for assistive robotics
  • Data sharing and benchmarking HRI for assistive robotics
  • And others

Tentative Schedule/Important Dates

10 June 2018 - Call for papers
1 September 2018 -1 August 2018 1  Submission deadline EXTENDED
1 October 2018 - Notification of Acceptance
15 October 2018 –Preliminary/Final recommendation to EiC
1 November 2018 – Notifications to authors by EiC
15 December 2018 – Deadline for rebuttal
1 February 2019 – End of second review round
15 February 2019 – Final recommendation to EiC
1 March 2019 – Notifications to authors by EiC
1 March 2019 – Guest editorial submitted to EiC
15 March 2019 – Final submission and forward to publisher
10 June 2019 – Special Issue

Guest Editors

Ayanna Howard portrait
Ayanna Howard
SI Socially Assistive Robotics
Georgia Institute of Technology
Atlanta (GA), USA
Isamu Kajitani portrait
Isamu Kajitani
SI Socially Assistive Robotics
National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)
Tokyo, Japan
Adriana Tapus portrait
Adriana Tapus
SI Socially Assistive Robotics
ENSTA-ParisTech
Paris, France

Short Bio of the Guest Editors:

Prof. Adriana Tapus is Full Professor in the Autonomous Systems and Robotics Lab in the Computer Science and System Engineering Department (U2IS), at ENSTA-ParisTech, France. In 2011, she obtained the French Habilitation (HDR) for her thesis entitled “Towards Personalized Human-Robot Interaction”. She received her PhD in Computer Science from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland in 2005 and her degree of Engineer in Computer Science and Engineering from Politehnica University of Bucharest, Romania in 2001. She worked as an Associate Researcher at the University of Southern California (USC), where she was among the pioneers on the development of socially assistive robotics, also participating to activity in machine learning, human sensing, and human-robot interaction. Her main interests are on long-term learning (i.e. in particular in interaction with humans), human modeling, and on-line robot behavior adaptation to external environmental factors. Prof. Tapus is an Associate Editor for International Journal of Social Robotics (IJSR), ACM Transactions on Human-Robot Interaction (THRI), and IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems (TCDS) and in the steering committee of several major robotics conferences (General Chair 2019 of HRI, Program Chair 2018 of HRI, General Chair 2017 of ECMR). She has more than 150 research publications and she received the Romanian Academy Award for her contributions in assistive robotics in 2010. She was elected in 2016 as one of the 25 women in robotics you need to know about. She's also the PI of various EU and French National research grants. Further details about her research and her activities can be found at http://www.ensta-paristech.fr/~tapus .

Prof. Ayanna Howard is the Linda J. and Mark C. Smith Professor and Chair of the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Howard’s career focus is on intelligent technologies that must adapt to and function within a human-centered world. Her work, which encompasses advancements in AI, assistive technologies, and robotics, has resulted in over 200 peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Howard received her B.S. in Engineering from Brown University, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California. To date, her unique accomplishments have been highlighted through a number of awards and articles, including highlights in USA Today, Upscale, and TIME Magazine, as well as being recognized as one of the 23 most powerful women engineers in the world by Business Insider. In 2013, she also founded Zyrobotics, which is currently licensing technology derived from her research and has released their first suite of STEM educational products to engage children of all abilities. Prior to Georgia Tech, Dr. Howard was a senior robotics researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She has also served as the Associate Director of Research for the Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines, Chair of the Robotics Ph.D. program, and the Associate Chair for Faculty Development in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech.

Dr. Isamu Kajitani is Senior Researcher in the Service Robotics Research Team (SRRT) in the Robot Innovation Research Center (RIRC), at National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan. In 1999, he received his PhD in Engineering from University of Tsukuba Graduate School Division of Engineering, Japan in 1999. His research interests include assistive-product, prosthetic hand, service robot, social acceptance of such products, and applied behavior analysis. Further details about his research and his activities can be found at https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3178-9388

Summary and Motivation

Demographic changes bring to light new challenges and issues to ensure care of an increasingly aging society with an unmet demand for dedicated professionals and increasing cost pressure. Moreover, statistics show that the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) among children is continuously increasing (as of 2017, in Japan 161 children per 10,000 children, in UK 94 children per 10,000 children, in USA 66 children per 10,000 children). Furthermore, according to the World Health Organization, 15 million people suffer stroke worldwide each year and stroke is the leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States. In addition to these, there are also many other diseases and disorders such as obesity, Parkinson disease, etc. (this list is far from being exhaustive). All these vulnerable populations need long-term personalized assistive care and, due to serious shortage of health care professionals, socially assistive robots have been shown as a viable complementary tools to address this need.

 


Image Credits: Maya Association - Nao in interaction with a child with autism (left image) and ENRICHME project- TiaGO robot in interaction with an elderly person suffering of MCI (right image)

The goal of socially assistive robotics (SAR) is enabling robots with the ability to help people through social interaction in a non-contact manner during their daily tasks, in rehabilitation, training, and education. This special issue is intended to collect the state-of-the-art as well as recent novel results in the field of socially assistive robotics.

 

Call for Papers

Continuous new developments in robotics allow an increase in the introduction of robots in our daily life. The optimal assistive robot should share a human centered environment, be able to cope with human presence, interact in a very engaging way, monitor the human’s behavior, provide useful feedback, adapt to the human’s profile over time, allow for long-term interaction, etc. Moreover, interacting with vulnerable populations is also very challenging and introduces new issues such as empathy, paternalism, etc.

This special issue aims to present state-of-the-art and recent advances in socially assistive robotics for various target populations (i.e., the elderly, people suffering of autism, stroke, Parkinson disease, etc.).

 

Topics relevant to this special issue includes, but are not limited to:

  • Long-term interaction
  • Machine learning for adaptive and personalized interaction
  • Multimodal perception for human behavior modelling
  • Performance indicators for HRI in assistive robotics
  • Empathy, trust, and acceptance in assistive robotics
  • Ethical issues and principles for assistive robotics
  • Data sharing and benchmarking HRI for assistive robotics
  • And others.

 

Guest Editors

Prof. Adriana Tapus, Autonomous Systems and Robotics Lab, ENSTA ParisTech, France (adriana.tapus@ensta-paristech.fr)
Prof. Ayanna Howard, Human-Automation Systems Lab (HumAnS), Georgia Tech, USA
(ah260@gatech.edu)
Dr. Isamu Kajitani, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Japan (isamu.kajitani@aist.go.jp )

Tentative Schedule/Important Dates

10 June 2018 - Call for papers
1 August 2018- Submission deadline
1 October 2018 - Notification of Acceptance
15 October 2018 –Preliminary/Final recommendation to EiC
1 November 2018 – Notifications to authors by EiC
15 December 2018 – Deadline for rebuttal
1 February 2019 – End of second review round
15 February 2019 – Final recommendation to EiC
1 March 2019 – Notifications to authors by EiC
1 March 2019 – Guest editorial submitted to EiC
15 March 2019 – Final submission and forward to publisher
10 June 2019 – Special Issue

 

Short Bio of the Guest Editors:

Prof. Adriana Tapus is Full Professor in the Autonomous Systems and Robotics Lab in the Computer Science and System Engineering Department (U2IS), at ENSTA-ParisTech, France. In 2011, she obtained the French Habilitation (HDR) for her thesis entitled “Towards Personalized Human-Robot Interaction”. She received her PhD in Computer Science from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland in 2005 and her degree of Engineer in Computer Science and Engineering from Politehnica University of Bucharest, Romania in 2001. She worked as an Associate Researcher at the University of Southern California (USC), where she was among the pioneers on the development of socially assistive robotics, also participating to activity in machine learning, human sensing, and human-robot interaction. Her main interests are on long-term learning (i.e. in particular in interaction with humans), human modeling, and on-line robot behavior adaptation to external environmental factors. Prof. Tapus is an Associate Editor for International Journal of Social Robotics (IJSR), ACM Transactions on Human-Robot Interaction (THRI), and IEEE Transactions on Cognitive and Developmental Systems (TCDS) and in the steering committee of several major robotics conferences (General Chair 2019 of HRI, Program Chair 2018 of HRI, General Chair 2017 of ECMR). She has more than 150 research publications and she received the Romanian Academy Award for her contributions in assistive robotics in 2010. She was elected in 2016 as one of the 25 women in robotics you need to know about. She's also the PI of various EU and French National research grants. Further details about her research and her activities can be found at http://www.ensta-paristech.fr/~tapus .


Prof. Ayanna Howard is the Linda J. and Mark C. Smith Professor and Chair of the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Howard’s career focus is on intelligent technologies that must adapt to and function within a human-centered world. Her work, which encompasses advancements in AI, assistive technologies, and robotics, has resulted in over 200 peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Howard received her B.S. in Engineering from Brown University, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California. To date, her unique accomplishments have been highlighted through a number of awards and articles, including highlights in USA Today, Upscale, and TIME Magazine, as well as being recognized as one of the 23 most powerful women engineers in the world by Business Insider. In 2013, she also founded Zyrobotics, which is currently licensing technology derived from her research and has released their first suite of STEM educational products to engage children of all abilities. Prior to Georgia Tech, Dr. Howard was a senior robotics researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She has also served as the Associate Director of Research for the Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines, Chair of the Robotics Ph.D. program, and the Associate Chair for Faculty Development in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech.


Dr. Isamu Kajitani is Senior Researcher in the Service Robotics Research Team (SRRT) in the Robot Innovation Research Center (RIRC), at National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan. In 1999, he received his PhD in Engineering from University of Tsukuba Graduate School Division of Engineering, Japan in 1999. His research interests include assistive-product, prosthetic hand, service robot, social acceptance of such products, and applied behavior analysis. Further details about his research and his activities can be found at https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3178-9388

Special Issue on Robots for in-situ interventions: From innovative approaches to industrial applications

Background and motivation

Conventionally, robot manufacturers focused their attention on automation of the production lines for brand-new products and/or repetitive tasks; as these are developed mainly for “open spaces” (e.g. large workshops) their ability to access confined spaces is limited from both dimensional and number of DoF point of view.

However, it seems that limited attention has been paid to the development of necessary robotic systems to assist with post-production works such as maintenance and repair.

Some key industries rely on post-production treatments (e.g. maintenance, repair) to sustain their business to: 

  • Ensure safe running of complex installations (e.g. nuclear power plants), highly engineered products (e.g. aero-engines) or civil engineering assets (e.g. bridges).
  • Avoid cost penalties associated with possible down-times of equipment (e.g. shut down of power plants, offshore oil rigs) that provide critical inputs (e.g. gas, electricity, oil) to wide range of industries.
  • To comply with health and safety when post-production operations are performed on some installations (e.g. works at heights, underwater, chemical exposure, restrained spaces, explosive environments).
  • To respond to the need in performing “against the clock” treatments on industrial equipment under constrained/dangerous environments (e.g. submersed installations or offshore rigs).

As such, due to the large scale of these key installations (e.g. power plants, offshore oil & gas platforms), most of the time, the post-production (e.g. maintenance/repair) works are performed in-situ and thus, the use of “off-the-shelf” robots to carry out such tasks might not be possible. 

Moreover, most of these post-production works require multi-task operations such as inspection, sampling, machining, metrological assessments; all these aspects indicate that there is not a simple solution for having an adequate tooling system if holistic (overall) in-situ treatments have to be done.

SI Robots for in situ interventionsThus, it becomes apparent that the development of innovative robotised solutions for performing in-situ holistic post-production works, on capital intensive and long service life equipment is of critical importance for ensuring safe and economical operation of key industrial sectors.

In such instances, the lack of appropriate robotic systems to perform holistic post-productions operations (e.g. inspection & maintenance & repair) in a versatile manner to cover a large field of applications not only results in insufficient exploitation of the existing installations but also hinders the development of new and ever-more sophisticated technologies (e.g. energy, aerospace, construction).

In the above context, it seems that a niche technology is that of miniature robotised machine systems to address holistic inspection, maintenance and repair works in restricted/hazardous environments.Miniature robotised machines refer here as advanced robotic systems that are able to navigate/access in-situ industrial installations and perform multi-task operations (e.g. inspection, removal/additive processing) for holistic in-situ maintenance/repair of complex installations. 

Call for papers

This Special Issue aims to select a set of recent advances in specialist robotics dedicated to in-situ interventions with emphasis to those solutions that not only perform “passive” (e.g. inspection) tasks but also able to perform “active” (e.g. machining, welding, etc) tasks.

To topics to be considered in this special issue include, but not limited to:

  • Design and modelling of novel concepts of robots for in-situ interventions
  • Control of robotics for navigation and manipulation of in-situ hazardous environments
  • Autonomous or teleoperated robots for in-situ interventions
  • Human-robot interaction to support operation of robots for in-situ interventions
  • Collaborative robots for performing complex tasks in-situ structured/unstructured environments
  • Smart mechatronics, including end-effectors, and sensing that enable robotic in-situ interventions
  • Others…

 

The Guest Editors aim to select those contributions that have clear evidence on their ability to perform real (near) industrial in-situ interventions. Through this, it is hoped that the academic and industrial community will get excited about the challenges and opportunities offered by robotics for in-situ interventions.

Important Dates

1 May 2018 - Deadline for paper submission  22 May 2018 - DEADLINE EXTENDED 
1 August 2018 - First review
20 November 2018 - Final review
March 2019 - Publication

Guest Editors

Dragos Axinte portrait
Dragos Axinte
SI on Robots for in situ interventions
University of Nottingham
Nottingham, UK
Xilun Ding portrait
Xilun Ding
SI on Robots for in situ interventions
Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Beijing, China
Ian Walker portrait
Ian Walker
SI on Robots for in situ interventions
Clemson University
Clemson (SC), USA

IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine seeks articles for a Special Issue on Floating-base (Aerial and Underwater) Manipulation.

During the last 20 years, underwater robots have been widely used as a tool for mapping the seafloor using optical and acoustic sensors, with applications to offshore sites inspection, marine geology, underwater archaeology to mention but a few. At the same time, aerial robots are also limited to monitoring and surveillance applications, and research has mainly focused on topics such as perception and navigation. However, a large number of applications exist that go beyond the survey capabilities, and the possibility of manipulating objects with these two challenging technologies could open up an entire set of new applications.

Both underwater and aerial robots are floating-base robotic systems, and this fact makes their control different from classic ground mobile manipulators. From a research perspective, topics and issues such as coordinated control of the whole floating manipulator system, safe interaction with the environment, disturbance rejection, object perception from a floating base, are still important challenges to be solved.

This special issue will provide up-to-date results and novel advanced solutions for floating manipulation, both from the point of view of aerial and underwater fields. In particular, this issue aims to bring together two communities that have so far operated in parallel but without too much interaction, despite the similarities between the two fields.

The topics of interest for paper submissions include, but are not limited to:

  • Design of aerial or underwater manipulation systems
  • Underwater/aerial hands and grippers
  • Mechatronics of manipulators optimized for floating operation
  • Coordinated control of floating base and manipulator
  • Cooperative control of multiple floating manipulators
  • Perception and precise localization for floating manipulation
  • Physical interaction of floating base manipulators
  • Techniques for assisted remote manipulation
  • Learning techniques for floating manipulation
  • Motion planning of floating manipulators
  • Fault tolerant approaches for floating manipulators
  • Any other key enabling technology for floating manipulation

Important Dates

17 December 2017 - Deadline for paper submission (Extended: 1 February 2018)
May 2018 - First review
August 2018 - Final review
December 2018 - Publication

 

Guest Editors

Matteo Fumagalli portrait
Matteo Fumagalli
Special Issue on Floating-base (Aerial and Underwater) Manipulation
University of Aalborg
Aalborg, Denmark
Enrico Simetti portrait
Enrico Simetti
Special Issue on Floating-base (Aerial and Underwater) Manipulation
University of Genova
Genova, Italy

Human-robot collaboration for production environments - CALL FOR PAPERS

Modern manufacturing companies are expected to quickly and efficiently adapt to production changes. Robotics has long been touted as the candidate solution for the required flexibility, although in many situations, full roboticization has either not been not economically viable or yielded all of the hoped for benefits. While robots have become faster, “smarter”, stronger, more accurate and reliable, challenges remain in adaptability, decision making and robustness to changing and uncertain situations.  To address these shortfalls and improve flexibility to fast production changes, future working environments will be populated by both humans and robots, sharing the same workspace. This scenario entails a series of issues and topics, such as safety, optimal tasks allocation and scheduling, learning and error recovery, which are still open questions for industrial settings. From a research perspective, the possibility for robotic manipulators to directly work alongside humans has stimulated a variety of novel research fields in recent years. From an industrial perspective, this newly available technology has been accepted by big manufacturing as well as small and medium enterprises. The most recent statistics indicate that the market for collaborative robots is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of near 60%, reaching 12 billion dollars in less than ten years.

ABBs Yumi Robot at Elektro Praga    Universal Robots UR10 at Paradigm Electronics

Image credits: ABB’s Yumi robot at Elektro-Praga (left) and Universal Robots’ UR10 at Paradigm Electronics (right)

This special issue will profile up-to-date results and novel advanced solutions in human-robot collaboration (HRC) with special emphasis on successful applications in many fields, including manufacturing, assembly and constructions sites. The topics of interest for paper submissions include, but are not limited to:

  • safety aspects of HRC, including injury assessment, safety monitoring and metrics, and safety control methods;
  • human perception, prediction and intention estimation;
  • sensing devices and situational awareness for HRC;
  • human-robot activity allocation and scheduling;
  • ergonomic aspects in HRC, including human augmentation devices;
  • interaction modalities in HRC;
    learning and transferring human skills to robotic manipulators;
  • ease of use of collaborative robots (programming);
  • mechatronic design of lightweight robots, including end-effectors;
  • incorporation of virtual reality tools in HRC;
  • and others …

Important Dates

1 August 2017 – Submission deadline
1 November 2017 – Notifications to authors by EiC 
15 December 2017 – Deadline for rebuttal
1 March 2018 – Notifications to authors by EiC
15 March 2018 – Final submission and forward to publisher 
June 2018 – RAM issue

Guest Editors

Elizabeth A. Croft portrait
Elizabeth A. Croft
Call for Papers- Human-robot collaboration for production environments
University of British Columbia
Vancouver, Canada
Hao Ding portrait
Hao Ding
Call for Papers- Human-robot collaboration for production environments
ABB Corporate Research
Ladenburg, Germany
Miao Li portrait
Miao Li
Call for Papers- Human-robot collaboration for production environments
Wuhan University
Wuhan, China
Andrea M. Zanchettin  portrait
Andrea M. Zanchettin
Call for Papers- Human-robot collaboration for production environments
Politecnico di Milano
Milan, Italy

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