Deadline EXTENDED: 14 December 2015

The IEEE Robotics and Automation Society is seeking applications for the Member Activities Board's Student Activities Committee (SAC). There are three available positions; one Chair and two co-Chairs. These positions are a great opportunity to learn more about the Society, have an international impact, and expand one's professional network. The chair will serve for two calendar years (2016–17), and the co-chairs for one-year term in 2016 and renewable for a second year.

SAC LogoIf you wish to be considered, please send the following information to ras@ieee.org before 15 November 2015.
1. A letter indicating why you are interested in serving on the SAC board (2 pages maximum)
2. A copy of your CV or resume (2 pages maximum)
3. A letter of support from a faculty member at your college or university, who is a member of IEEE RAS.

For more information on the SAC and current activities, refer to the webpage or email Lauren Miller, 2014-2015 SAC Chair at lmiller@u.northwestern.edu.

updated 20 November 2015


 

The next challenge will be held at ICRA 2016, in Stockholm, Sweden, May 2016.
http://www.isr.uc.pt/HRATC2016
http://www.icra2016.org/conference/challenges/

DEADLINE:
Description Papers due 14 December 2015

According to the UN Mine Action Service, landmines kill 15,000-20,000 people every year (mostly children) and maim countless more across 78 countries. Demining efforts cost US$ 300-1000 per mine, and, for every 5000 mines cleared, one person is killed and two are injured. Thus, clearing post-combat regions of landmines has proven to be a difficult, risky, dangerous and expensive task with enormous social implications for civilians. Motivated by these considerations, the IEEE Robotics & Automation Society Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (RAS SIGHT) is inviting the academic and non-academic community to participate in the third Humanitarian Robotics and Automation Technology Challenge (HRATC) at the 2016 International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2016).

Following on the footsteps of the success of the HRATC Challenge that was held at ICRA 2014 in Hong Kong and ICRA 2015 in Seattle, this HRATC edition will continue to focus on promoting the development of new strategies for autonomous landmine detection using a mobile (ground) robot. The Challenge will take place in three phases: 1) Simulation Phase, 2) Testing Phase, and 3) Challenge Phase. The strategies developed by the participating teams will be objectively and quantitatively evaluated according to the following criteria: exploration time and environmental coverage; detection and classification quality; and landmine avoidance. Teams will be progressively eliminated after each phase and the remaining teams would move on to the next phase culminating in the Challenge (Finals) phase at ICRA 2016.

All teams will use the same robot, called FSR-Husky, that will be available before (for remote practice runs) and during the Challenge. Furthermore, participants will have access to a ROS-based simulator to develop and test their code before testing it remotely on the real robot.

How To Participate in the Challenge
All potential participants should submit a paper (1-2 pages) in the standard IEEE format including figures that describes the motivation and previous experiences/research (if any). The organizers will then evaluate this paper and an acceptance notification containing further steps would follow. All submissions should be sent to <hratc2016@gmail.com>. The Challenge will take place remotely in Coimbra, Portugal, and beamed in real time to the Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre during ICRA 2016. Necessary logistics and travel support will be provided depending on the number of qualifying teams.

More details on HRATC 2014 and HRATC 2015 can be found at http://www.isr.uc.pt/HRATC2014/ and http://www.isr.uc.pt/HRATC2015/, respectively, and from following summary published in the IEEE-RAS Robotics and Automation Magazine (RAM):
2015 Humanitarian Robotics and Automation Technology Challenge by Madhavan, R.; Marques, L.; Prestes, E.; Maffei, R.; Jorge, V.; Gil, B.; Dogru, S.; Cabrita, G.; Neuland, R.; Dasgupta, P. IEEE-RAS Robotics and Automation Magazine, Sept. 2015.

About IEEE RAS-SIGHT
The IEEE RAS SIGHT is the first IEEE Society to have a SIGHT! The mission of RAS-SIGHT is the application of robotics and automation technologies for promoting humanitarian causes around the globe, and to leverage existing and emerging technologies for the benefit of humanity and towards increasing the quality of life in underserved, underdeveloped areas in collaboration with existing global communities and organizations. To engage the international community in these causes, RAS-SIGHT has been organizing Challenges and funding small projects centered on humanitarian causes.

See http://www.ieee-ras.org/educational-resources-outreach/humanitarian-efforts for more details.

Acknowledgments
The Challenge organizers thank the FP7-TIRAMISU project (http://www.fp7-tiramisu.eu/) and Clearpath Robotics, Inc. for their support and partnership in organizing HRATC 2016.

Congratulations to the six RAS members elected by the membership to serve a three-year term beginning 1 January 2016. We wish the newly elected members of the Administrative Committee success and thank all candidates for their willingness to serve and for permitting their names to be included on the ballot.

AdCom Members Elected at Large:

antonelli pic1 1

Gianluca Antonelli
University of Cassino and Southern Lazio, Italy

 

Corke

Peter Corke
Queensland University of Technology, Australia

 

AdCom Member from RAS Geographic Area 1 (the Americas):

Bill Hamel

Bill Hamel
University of Tennessee, (TN) USA

 

AdCom Members from RAS Geographical Area 2 (Europe, Africa, Middle East--IEEE Region 8):

Francois.Chaumette

François Chaumette
Inria Rennes, France

 

CTorras

Carme Torras
Institut de Robòtica i Informàtica Industrial (CSIC-UPC) Barcelona, Spain

 

AdCom Member from RAS Geographical Area 3 (Asia, Australia, Pacific Rim):

Meng

Max Q.-H. Meng
Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China

 

 posted 9 November 2015

 


 

 


 

Proposals due 10 December 2015!

Robotics & Automation (R&A) Technologies have the potential to transform and improve the lives of humanity by addressing the world's toughest challenges. The IEEE Robotics and Automation Society - Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (RAS-SIGHT) is engaging the academic and non-academic community to propose viable solutions in R&A to address relevant world problems through several initiatives that include challenges in robotics conferences, funding projects, establishment of collaboration networks with academia, industry, and governments.

RAS is the first IEEE Society to have a SIGHT! The mission of RAS-SIGHT is the application of robotics and automation technologies for promoting humanitarian causes around the globe, and to leverage existing and emerging technologies for the benefit of humanity and towards increasing the quality of life in under-served, under-developed areas in collaboration with existing global communities and organizations. As an example of this initiative, RAS-SIGHT has organized two editions of the Humanitarian Robotics and Automation Technology Challenge at the 2014 and 2015 International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA). For additional information, see articles in the IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine:
http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/articleDetails.jsp?arnumber=7254314 &
http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/articleDetails.jsp?arnumber=6894711.

RAS-SIGHT envisions HRATCs as an unprecedented opportunity for technologists from around the world to collaborate using their skills and education to benefit humanity. The problems (challenges) are framed with the environmental, cultural, structural, political, socio-economic, and resource constraints so that solutions can be developed, deployed, and sustained.

In this vein, RAS-SIGHT is soliciting proposals that when implemented would improve the quality of life for the beneficiaries.
Some important points worth noting:
- The problem that you propose to solve should utilize robotics and automation technologies
- It is strongly encouraged that the solution be developed and deployed with active involvement from the community or the end-users that it is intended to benefit
- Sustainability beyond the completion of the project will be a key consideration

If you are interested, please submit a *4 page (max.) proposal* in the standard IEEE conference format (http://www.ieee.org/conferences_events/conferences/publishing/templates.html) outlining:
- the problem,
- the solution,
- related work, similar initiatives, and how the proposed project will achieve new results than what is currently available,
- proposed partnerships with existing initiatives,
- number of people who would be impacted,
- previous experiences, both in terms of research and deployment,
- project development timeline,
- a breakdown of anticipated costs, and how the funds would be used to support the project
- short biographies of project members (with URLs of your website)

We anticipate to fund 8-10 proposals in the US$2000-$2500 range.
*** Deadline: 10 December 2015 ***
*** Acceptance notification: 10 January 2016 ***
All submissions and questions should be sent to Raj Madhavan, Chair, RAS-SIGHT via email at <raj.madhavan@ieee.org>.

posted 5 November 2015

 


 

The 36th edition of the "Guido Dorso Award" was presented to Bruno Siciliano on 15 October 2015 in a ceremony held at the Senate of the Republic in Rome by the Rector of University of Naples Federico II. Every year, the Guido Dorso Award recognizes fellows who have contributed their work to support the needs of development and progress of Southern Italy. Siciliano received the award for the section "University". Distinguished fellows from the political, economic and cultural world received the award in the past years, including two Nobel prizes.
http://www.unina.it/-/10640377-bruno-siciliano-e-tra-i-vincitori-della-36a-edizione-del-premio-dorso

PremioDorso Oct15 14

Fifty-six year old, professor of Control and Robotics at University of Naples Federico II and Coordinator of the Programme in Automation Engineering, Bruno Siciliano is the scientific director of PRISMA Lab, the Laboratory of Projects for Industrial and Service Robotics, Mechatronics and Automation in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology.

Professor Siciliano coordinates a staff of 25 researchers including junior faculty, fellows, graduate students and post-docs from four continents. His group has participated in 15 projects financed by the European Union for a total funding of 8.5 million euro in the last 8 years. He has held representative positions within professional societies, including President of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society for 2008-2009. Professor Siciliano is the only European to be a Fellow of the three most important scientific associations in the sector of automation (IEEE, ASME and IFAC ) and has received numerous awards at national and international levels.

His research interests are in force control, visual control, bimanual manipulation, aerial robotics, coexistence between robots and humans, and service robotics. He has published 300 articles in journals and conference papers and 7 books on robotics; his book Robotics: Modelling, Planning and Control is one of the most adopted texts in the universities around the world and has been translated into Italian, Chinese and Greek. He is Co-Editor of the Springer Handbook of Robotics, which was awarded the highest award for scientific publishing: 2008 AAP PROSE Award for Excellence in Physical Sciences & Mathematics, and Award for Engineering & Technology. He has held 20 plenary lectures at international conferences and more than 100 invited seminars at foreign institutions, and has carried out an intense publishing activity.

Equally intense has been his activity to disseminate robotics and science to the general public. The results of his research have earned him numerous awards and hundreds of articles in national and foreign newspapers and magazines, as well as many appearances on radio and TV.

posted 3 November 2015

 


 

The IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS2015) was held 28 September – 2 October 2015, in Hamburg, Germany. Congratulations to the following winners - announced on 1 October.

IROS Distinguished Service Award
To recognize individuals who have performed outstanding service for the benefit and advancement of IROS.
Toshio Fukuda - "For his outstanding services in founding and supporting IROS conferences"
Tzyh-Jong Tarn - "For his outstanding services to IROS Advisory/Steering Committee and IROS conferences"

IROS Toshio Fukuda Young Professional Award
DSC 6654To recognize individuals in the early stage of their career, who have made an identifiable contribution or contributions which have had a major impact on the robotics field.
Rainer Bischoff - "For his technical contributions to the personal robotic assistant HERMES and his effort in uniting the European robotics community"

 

 

IROS 2015 Best Paper Award 
To recognize the most outstanding paper presented at the conference, based on quality of contribution, of a written paper, and of the oral presentation. 
Xin Alice Wu, Srinivasan Suresh, Hao Jiang, John Ulmen, Elliot Wright Hawkes, David Christensen and Mark Cutkosky
"Tactile Sensing for Gecko-Inspired Adhesion"

IROS 2015 ABB Best Student Paper Award
To recognize the most outstanding paper authored primarily and presented by a student at the conference, based on the quality of the contribution, of the written paper and of the oral presentation.
YuFeng Chen, Elizabeth Farrell Helbling, Gravish Nicholas, Kevin Ma and Robert Wood
"Hybrid Aerial and Aquatic Locomotion in an At-Scale Robotic Insect"

Best ICROS Application Paper Award
Sponsored by the Institute of Control, Robotics, and Systems (ICROS)
Nishanth Koganti, Jimson Gelbolingo Ngeo, Tomoya Tamei, Kazushi Ikeda and Tomohiro Shibata
"Cloth Dynamics Modeling in Latent Spaces and its Application to Robotic Clothing Assistance"

JTCF Novel Technology Paper Award for Amusement Culture
This award recognizes practical technology contributing to toys, toy models, and amusement culture.
Sponsored by the Japan Toy Culture Foundation
Gilad Refael and Amir Degani
"Momentum-Driven Single-Actuated Swimming Robot"

RoboCup Best Paper Award
Sponsored by the RoboCup Federation
Kegui Wu, Wee Sun Lee and David Hsu
"POMDP to the Rescue: Boosting Performance for Robocup Rescue"

posted 29 October 2015

 


 

Nominations are due 31 January 2016 for the 2017 IEEE Technical Field Award in Robotics and Automation. This is the most prestigious award presented by the IEEE in the field of robotics and automation and includes a medal and a $US 10,000 honorarium. IEEE TFAs are awarded for contributions or leadership in a specific field of interest of the IEEE and are among the highest awards presented on behalf of the IEEE Board of Directors.

Visit http://www.ieee-ras.org/awards-recognition/ for a description of the award criteria and instructions on submitting a nomination.

The 2016 IEEE Technical Field Award in Robotics and Automation will be presented to Raffaello D'Andrea "For pioneering contributions to design and implementation of distributed, cooperative robotics and automation systems for commercial applications." The presentation will take place at the Award Ceremony held during ICRA 2016 in Stockholm, Sweden from 16-21 May 2016.

posted 29 October 2015

 


 

The Deadline to vote is 21 October 2015!

RAS members are voting to elect six new members of the RAS Administrative Committee to serve 3-year terms beginning 1 January 2016. All RAS members (Graduate Student Members and above) have received voting instructions, the biographies, and statements of the candidates by email. RAS membership must be active as of 13 August 2015 to be eligible to vote. Members who do not have valid emails registered with the IEEE or have opted not to receive e-mail from IEEE, have received their election materials by post.

vote 2015 1

Click here to review the candidates' bios and position statements.

posted 15 October 2015

 


 

To foster the entrepreneurial spirit and to provide a platform to encourage researchers and practitioners to transition ideas and prototypes to commercializable products, the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society's Industrial Activities Board invited the robotics and automation community to participate in an Entrepreneurship Forum and Start-up Competition (EFSC) at the 2015 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS'15) held in Hamburg, Germany on 1 October 2015. The event was intended to inspire, educate, enable, and empower researchers, students, young professionals, and anyone else who has the 'start-up bug' in starting companies of their own but is not sure of how to go about it.

After a rigorous review process, 12 finalists were selected to make their final 'pitches' in Hamburg. In an interim Coaching stage, the finalists were paired with an expert to fine-tune their presentation and ideas to present at the Finals, where they made a 5 min. presentation (followed by a 5 min. Q&A session) to a distinguished judging panel of from the industry, and academia. The presentations were judged based on the following seven criteria: business idea, customer benefit, competitive advantage, market analysis, management, traction, and financial concept.

The judges were IEEE and RAS Member Dominik Boesl (Corporate Innovation Manager, KUKA AG, Germany), Francois Boucher (Chief Business Development Officer, Kinova, Canada)IEEE and RAS Member Ryan Gariepy (CTO, Clearpath Robotics, Canada), IEEE and RAS Member Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos (Distinguished McKnight University Professor, Univ. of Minnesota, USA), Slawomir Sander (Bosch Robotics, Germany), IEEE and RAS Member Alin Albu-Schaeffer (Head of the Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics, DLR, Germany), and IEEE and RAS member Nicola Tomatis (CEO, Bluebotics, Switzerland).

The top 3 finishers of the first IEEE RAS Start-up Competition were:
GRAND WINNER
Start up winner 1
IEEE and RAS Student Member Alvin Chen, from VascuLogic whose business idea was a portable, image-guided medical robot that improves the accuracy, safety, and cost-effectiveness of venipuncture by drawing blood and performing intravenous procedures in an automated fashion. 

SECOND PLACE
Start up second place 1
IEEE and RAS Member Kenji Suzuki,  from PLIMES Ltd. whose business idea was social problem solving by dramatically enhancing Quality of Life of people with lower body paralysis or elderly people through the use of passive exoskeletons with smart mechatronics in personal mobility.

 THIRD PLACE 
Start up third place 1
Francesco Maria Petrini
and Stanisa Raspopovic from SensArs Neuroprosthetics Sàrl whose business idea was SENSY, a unique device enabling amputees don't have feelings from their prosthesis to feel skin softness or a stone trampled during walking.

  

The three winners took home US$15,000, US$10,000, and US$5,000, respectively. All finalists were provided travel support of up to US$1250. Financial sponsorship provided by IEEE-RAS, IEEE, and KUKA is gratefully acknowledged.

More information on the Start-up Competition, the 12 finalists and their business ideas are available from
http://iros2015.org/index.php/program/entrepreneurship-forum-start-up-competition/.

 

posted 14 October 2015

 


 

The IEEE Robotics & Automation Society's second standard, Robot Map Data Representation for Navigation, has been approved by the IEEE Standards Board for publication! RAS was the Sponsor of this standard, P1873 (http://standards.ieee.org/findstds/standard/1873-2015.html).

This standard defines a common representation for two-dimensional robot map data, including metric and topological maps. It is intended to facilitate interoperability among different navigating robots, extending their operational range and application areas by defining a recommended format for exchanging map data. This standard is expected to overcome the incompatibility among map data formats of the different software tools, easing re-use of existing software and integration of system components coming from different stakeholders.

The Working Group Chairs are Wonpil Yu (ETRI, Korea) and Francesco Amigoni (Politecnico di Milano, Italy). Congratulations to all WG members!

 

posted 21 September 2015

 


 

This year's joint Lunch with Leaders and Young Professionals Luncheon event aims at introducing the RAS Young Reviewer Program (YRP), a new initiative to provide the IEEE RAS students with sound practices in peer reviewing of scientific papers. This event hosts the RAS community's distinguished leaders:

Raja Chatila - RAS President, Fumihito Arai, Allessandro De Luca, Oussama Khatib, Ron Lumia, Kevin Lynch, Tony Maciejewski, Raj Madhavan, Allison Okamura, David Orin, Stefano Stramigioli, Satoshi Tadokoro, Jing Xiao
and three invited speakers
Nancy Amato, Seth Hutchinson, Wolfram Burgard

The Speakers will introduce and openly discuss the most salient challenges in peer reviewing of the scientific papers. Wolfram Burgard will talk on "writing skills" of the scientific papers. Seth Hutchinson will talk about "peer-reviewing" of the scientific papers. The session will be moderated by Nancy Amato, and will be followed by general discussions, offering multiple perspectives from leaders of the RAS about what it takes to be a leader in our profession.

The Luncheon will be held at IROS 2015 in Hamburg, Germany on September 30: Congress Center Hamburg - Hall 6
Advanced registration is required. The cost is $5 per lunch.
Click here to register

 ********************************

 About the Young Reviewer Program (YRP)

The Young Reviewer Program (YRP) aims at introducing Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) students and young professionals to sound practices in peer reviewing of scientific papers. To achieve this objective, student YRP members will be supervised by Senior Reviewers (SR) in regular RAS review procedures. In addition to such a mentor-mentee relationship, YR members will have the opportunity of attending webinars and online tutorials to further explore and improve their writing and reviewing skills. Once a certain level of expertise is achieved, the YR will graduate with an overall qualification grade.

It is important to note here that within the YRP, the timing and the quality of the review to be delivered to the Associate Editors (AE), will be monitored and certified by the SRs. In addition, YRP will apply multiple safeguards to maintain confidentiality in the peer review process.

To join the Young Reviewer Program, please register at https://parasol.tamu.edu/ieee/ras-yrp

YRP Committee:
Arash Ajoudani (Arash.Ajoudani@iit.it), Tamás Haidegger (haidegger@ieee.org) and Seth Hutchinson (seth@illinois.edu)

posted 16 September 2015

 


 

Ballots were mailed and emails with election information were sent on 9 September 2015 to all Higher Grade IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Members and Affiliates (excluding Students) whose memberships were effective prior to 10 August 2015. If you did not receive an email from ieee-rasvote@ieee.org or a paper ballot by 24 September 2015, but you feel your membership was valid before 10 August 2015, you may email ieee-rasvote@ieee.org or call +1 732 562 3904 to check your member status. (Provide your member number, full name, and address.)

vote 2015 1Use https://eballot4.votenet.com/IEEE to access the ballot and cast your vote now. If you do not remember your password, you may retrieve it on the voter login page.

Voting must be completed no later than 21 October 2015. Any returns received after this date will not be counted. The online voting site will close at 4:00 pm Eastern Time.

If you have any questions about the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society voting process, please contact ieee-rasvote@ieee.org or +1 732-562-3904.

The 11th annual IEEE International Conference on Automation Science and Engineering (CASE 2015) was held on 24-28 August 2015, in Gothenburg, Sweden. IEEE CASE represents the flagship automation conference of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society. The conference aims to bring together researchers in automation from both industry and academia, together with industrial practitioners, to present and discuss the latest advances and developments in automation science and engineering.

Congratulations to the following winners of IEEE RAS and CASE Awards:

IEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering
Best Paper Award - Two Recipients this Year!

 

Ahmed Nazeem, Spyros Reveliotis
"Efficient Enumeration of Minimal Unsafe States in Complex Resource Allocation Systems"
vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 111-124, 2014

Wooram Park, Gregory S. Chirikjian
"An Assembly Automation Approach to Alignment of Noncircular Projections in Electron Microscopy"
vol. 11, no. 3, pp. 668-679, 2014

 

IEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering
Best New Application Paper Award - Two Recipients this Year!

 

Hamal Marino, Christos Bergeles, Bradley J. Nelson
"Robust Electromagnetic Control of Microrobots Under Force and Localization Uncertainties"
vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 310-316, 2014

Kevin R. Gue, Kai Furmans, Zäzilia Seibold, Onur Uludag
"GridStore: A Puzzle-Based Storage System With Decentralized Control"
vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 429-438, 2014

 

Best Conference Paper Award 2

Best Conference Paper Award - Two Recipients this Year!

 

Cong Zhao, Jingshan Li, Ningjian Huang
"Plant Flexibility Planning: Problem Formulation and Performance Estimation"

Qilong Huang, Qing-Shan Jia, Xiaohong Guan
"Multi-timescale Optimization between Distributed Wind Generators and Electric Vehicles in Microgrid"

 

Best Application Paper Award 

 

Saigopal Nelaturi, Gregory Burton, Christian Fritz, Kurtoglu Tolga
"Automatic Spatial Planning for Machining Operations"

 

Best Student Paper Award

 

Peng Wang (Student), Xinyao Tang, Robert Gao
"Automated Performance Tracking for Heat Exchangers in HVAC"

 

posted 31 August 2015

 


 

We're excited to announce that the Entrepreneurship Forum & Start-up Competition (EFSC) at IROS'15 will provide travel support for all finalists, and prizes for the top 3 finishers, totaling $45k. Don't miss this exciting opportunity to be mentored and evaluated by a distinguished panel of coaches and judges in a forum where you can fine-tune and pitch your ideas at one of the premier conferences of robotics and automation. We look forward to receiving your application.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP FORUM & START-UP COMPETITION (EFSC)
1 October 2015
2015 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS'15)
http://iros2015.org/index.php/program/entrepreneurship-forum-start-up-competition

In the last few years, entrepreneurship in robotics and automation has received renewed interest due to several high profile acquisitions (e.g. Amazon's $775 million acquisition of Kiva Systems in early 2012 and Google's acquisition of eight robotics companies in late 2013) among other success stories (e.g. DJI valued at $8 billion as of May 2015). To foster the entrepreneurial spirit and to provide a platform to encourage researchers and practitioners to transition ideas and prototypes to commercializable products, the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (IEEE RAS) is inviting the robotics and automation community to participate in an Entrepreneurship Forum and Start-up Competition (EFSC) at the 2015 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS'15) in Hamburg (http://iros2015.org/).

The event is intended to inspire, educate, enable, and empower researchers, students, young professionals, and anyone else who has the 'start-up bug' in starting companies of their own but is not sure of how to go about it. We also believe that this event will create an ecosystem that will provide the much-needed support for start-ups to launch their initiatives while being realistic about their envisioned ideas and products. Previous IEEE RAS events centered on the entrepreneurship topic have been held at IROS'13 (Tokyo) and IROS'14 (Chicago) and served as starting points for discussions on identifying gaps and building bridges between industry, academia, government, and end-users (see http://www.iros2013.org/industry-forum.html and http://www.iros2014.org/program/industry-forumhttp://www.iros2014.org/program/industry-forum).

EFSC at IROS'15 will consist of three stages:
* In the first stage, submitted applications will be down-selected to arrive at a pool of qualified applicants based on a defined set of criteria developed by the organizers (see 'Application Form' information below).
* This will be followed by a remote stage where the selected applicants will be paired with coaches based on the proposal content and the expertise of the coaches. The coaches will then critique, and provide technical and professional assistance to refine the idea/product pitches.
* The final stage would allow for the refined pitches and content to be presented in front of a distinguished panel of venture capitalists, industry, and academic experts who have successfully funded, transitioned and have experience in commercialization of robotics and automation technologies.

WHO CAN PARTICIPATE?
Anyone with an idea or a prototype/product utilizing robotics and/or automation technology is welcome to submit an application provided that the entity is 1) less than 2 years old, and 2) has not received any funding from angel investors or venture capitalists in the last 5 years.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE?
Interested applicants should complete the Application Form available for download from http://iros2015.org/images/downloads/EFSC_IROS2015_ApplicationForm.doc.
Please email completed forms to iros2015.efsc@gmail.com.

TRAVEL SUPPORT & AWARDS
We anticipate travel support for all qualified applicants invited to IROS'15 in addition to awards for the top 3 finishers (totaling $45k). We gratefully acknowledge the support from IEEE and KUKA.

IMPORTANT DATES
* Submission of Application Forms: 20 August 2015
* Announcement of Selected Applicants: 1 September 2015
* Final Presentations at IROS'15: 1 October 2015

posted17 August 2015

 


 

"For pioneering contributions to design and implementation of distributed, cooperative robotics and automation systems for commercial applications"

 

2016 Robotics DAndrea photoSpanning academics, business, and the arts, Raffaello D'Andrea's career is built on his ability to bridge theory and practice. He was the faculty advisor and system architect of the Cornell Robot Soccer Team, four-time world champions at the international RoboCup competition. He was one of the first in the controls community to use a multi-vehicle testbed for research. At ETH Zurich, his research redefines what autonomous systems are capable of. He is co-founder of Kiva Systems, a robotics company that revolutionized material handling by deploying thousands of autonomous mobile robots in warehouses. He recently founded Verity Studios, a company developing a new breed of interactive and autonomous flying machines.

Prof. D'Andrea is Professor of Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich.

The IEEE Robotics and Automation Award was established in 2002 by the IEEE Board of Directors, and is presented for contributions in the field of robotics and automation. It includes but is not limited to: manufacturing automation; robotics and automation in unstructured environments; sensor design; integration and fusion; robot design; modeling; planning and control; methodologies for robotics and automation, and the quality of the nomination.

Past Recipients can be found HERE

posted 6 August 2015


 

The IEEE Robotics & Automation Society’s Chapters and International Activities Committee (CIAC) and the Student Activities Committee (SAC) under the Member Activities Board, have developed a new Regional Student Representatives (RSR) initiative.

Regional diversity presents a challenge for RAS to effectively implement universal programs and engage students. In response, the RSR program assigns representatives to serve as ambassadors from the SAC to local student chapters and better facilitate communication between the two groups.

The primary responsibilities for each representative include:

•Initiate regional specific programs and competitions

•Participate in regular SAC and CIAC meetings to represent local student chapters

•Oversee student communication via mailing lists and social media

Additional responsibilities will vary according to region in order to better serve the RAS community at large. RSRs will work closely with SAC and CIAC and student chapters in their regions in order to promote student involvement in IEEE and RAS.

Regional student representatives have been appointed to represent Region(s) 1-7, 8, 9, and 10. They are Thassyo Pinto, Emad Omari, Victor Carranza and Tony K James respectively. Each representative is passionate about the community and excited to help facilitate local involvement. Please visit the formal RSR announcement to learn more about each representative.

This is a new program so we are especially interested in your ideas! To learn more or get involved, please contact your regional representative directly or email rasrsr@googlegroups.com for general questions about the program!

 

Chapters and International Activities Committee

Xiaorui Zhu, Co-Chair

Kenji Suzuki, Co-Chair

Student Activities Committee

Lauren Miller, Chair

Megan Emmons, Co-Chair

Posted on 23 July 2015

 


 

IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine is soliciting nominations for two new associate editors to begin in January 2016. The associate editors play an important role in maintaining the caliber of the magazine by ensuring the quality of published articles by implementing reviews of technical features according to IEEE guidelines, soliciting interesting and topical material articles for publication in the magazine, guiding the overall direction of the publication and providing feedback from the readership through e-mail conversations, teleconferences, and twice-yearly in-person meetings held in conjunction with the IEEE Conference on Robotics and Automation and the IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems. 

Associate editor terms normally consist of a one-year probation period followed by two years of additional service if performance is satisfactory. Applicants should have a strong technical background and excellent English language skills. 

Nominations should include a resume (not to exceed three pages), previous experience with publications as a reviewer or in other capacities, and areas of technical expertise. Please submit nominations as a single pdf file to Rachel O. Warnick at r.o.warnick@ieee.org by 30 September 2015.

Posted 1 July 2015

 


 

Congratulations to the IEEE Robotics & Automation Society Members who have been elevated in 2015 to Senior Members, the highest grade for which IEEE members can apply.

Karyn Apfeldorf

Himani Goyal Sharma

Jeffrey Miller

Tatsuo Arai

Keith Green

Hyun Myung

Amarnath Banerjee

Qi Kang

Yasushi Nakauchi

Timothy Barfoot

Ali Karimoddini

Gerasimos Rigatos

Taktok Bezine

Jonghyuk Kim

Jose Santos-Victor

Oliver Brock

Hadas Kress-Gazit

Khaled Shaban

Aidan Browne

Vilas Kumar

Rajat Singh

Jose Casallas

K Kyriakopoulos

Stephen Smith

Jorg Conradt

Bengt Lennartson

Zhiwei Song

Susan Corwin

Hun-Ok Lim

Lydia Tapia

Jian Dai

Dikai Liu

Jocelyne Troccaz

Michael Daily

Zhi-Yong Liu

Hesheng Wang

Amro Farid

Konrad Markowski

Michael Wellfare

 

Arianna Menciassi

Robert Zlot

Posted 20 July 2015


The 2015 IEEE RAS Summer School on Experimental Methodology, Performance Evaluation and Benchmarking in Robotics being held in Benicasim, Spain on 14-18 September is open for registration.  

For more visit: http://ieee-raspebras2015.org/

The IEEE-RAS Technical Committee on Performance Evaluation & Benchmarking of Robotic and Automation Systems (TC PEBRAS) has organized a Summer School as part of the IEEE RAS Technical Education Program. As the complexity of robotic and intelligent systems grows, it is more and more necessary to adhere to sound experimental approaches and benchmarking procedures. It is of fundamental importance that the next generation learns good experimental, performance evaluation and benchmarking methods as part of their technical education.

IEEE graduate students will have a unique training opportunity in these important topics. Students will closely interact for one week with some of the top-level researchers in the world relevant to this domain. They will also have the opportunity to discuss their research work with them.

Aims and scope

Participants will learn how to implement approaches with exhaustive experimental methodology and apply appropriate benchmarking procedures to compare the actual practical results with reference to standard accepted procedures; how experimental results can be replicable and refutable on the one hand, and quantitatively comparable according to community-endorsed metrics, on the other hand. At the end, a student should be able to provide an educated response tob the following questions:
- How research should be performed and reported in order to allow result replications
- How should competitions be designed in order to maximize their contribution to robotics research and the industrial exploitation of results
- To which extent and for measuring which functionalities and capabilities are benchmarks useful and possible
- Which balance of result replication, benchmarking, challenges and competitions would allow a more objective evaluation of results and consequent objective assessment of the state of the art in the various subfields of their domain of research

Posted 15 July 2015

 


 

The IEEE Robotics & Automation Magazine is issuing a call for papers for a special issue on Soft Robotics and Morphological Computation.  

Introduction
Soft robotics and morphological computation are two recent exciting trends in robotics that are expected to provide novel approaches and high-impact applications. The use of soft and deformable materials in robotics system is crucial to deal with uncertain task and environments such as locomotion in rough terrains, grasping and manipulation of unknown and unstructured objects. Soft robots can be characterized by elastic and deformable bodies, a large number of degrees of freedom, the use of unconventional functional materials, and the involvement of intrinsic passive dynamics. All of these properties could provide significant advantages to adaptability of robotic systems if they are treated properly. The research field of morphological computation, on the other hand, explores the concepts and theories of computation in physical systems, where we investigate how motion control processes can be distributed over informational and physical dynamics. It has been previously shown that, by properly designing the dynamics, physical systems such as soft robotic grippers can benefit from simplified control architectures and improved overall performances. The special issue of “Soft Robotics and Morphological Computation” in IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine (IEEE-RAM) aims to summarize the state of the art of soft robotics and morphological computation research areas, and to provide a venue for the fruitful collaborations between these two research fields. The desired outcome of this special issue is to develop a general consensus about the scientific goals, perspective and challenges of the two research fields, as well as high impact applications.

Topics
We invite review/position papers of topics related to soft robotics, morphological computation and the intersection between the two fields.
The topics include but not limited to:
• Artificial skin and stretchable sensors and electronics
• Bio-inspired or biomimetic robots based on passive dynamics and unconventional materials
• Continuum robots, flexible robots, reconfigurable robots
• Functional materials, morphologies, and assembly for adaptive robotic systems
• Modeling and simulation of soft bodied robots and structures
• Natural computation, unconventional computation for adaptive robotic systems
• Physical human-robot interactions based on soft technologies
• Wearable robotics

Timeline 
Deadline for Paper Submission: 10 November 2015 - EXTENDED TO 1 December 2015
Review Completion and Acceptance Notification: 28 February 2016
Final Submission: June 2016
Publication: September 2016

Guest Editors
Fumiya Iida (University of Cambridge), Cecilia Laschi (Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna), Dario Floreano (EPFL), Robert Wood (University), Surya Nurzaman (Monash University), Andre Rosendo (University of Cambridge)

Posted 30 June 2015
Edited 2 November 2015

 


 

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