Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

GRASP Seminar: Hugh Durrant-Whyte, University of Sydney, Australia, “Information, Fusion and Control in Autonomous Networks”

October 31, 2008 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Abstract: Information provides a quantitative metric for describing the value of individual systems components in autonomous systems tasks such as tracking, mapping and navigation, search and exploration; tasks in which the objective is information gain in some form. An information model is an abstraction of system capabilities in an anonymous form which allows a priori reasoning on the system itself. By construction, information measures have properties of composability and additivity and thus provides a natural means of modeling and describing large scale systems of systems.

This talk will begin by describing how information measures arise naturally in autonomous tracking, mapping and navigation, search and exploration tasks. It is then demonstrated that the performance of individual sensors and platforms can be modeled using these information measures and that system-level performance metrics can be computed. These ideas are illustrated in a series of tasks involving mixed air and ground autonomous systems. These include flight-tests of cooperative UAVs engaged in tracking and navigation tasks, mixed UAV, ground vehicles and human operatives, engaged in mapping and picture compilation operations, and operations involving multi-platform search in constrained environments. In each, it is shown how information provides both a performance metric and design objective underpinning large-scale systems of systems operation. Finally current work in using these ideas to design and manage large-scale autonomous systems in applications such as cargo handling and mining will be described.


Hugh Durrant-Whyte received the B.Sc. in Nuclear Engineering from the University of London, U.K., in 1983, and the M.S.E. and Ph.D. degrees, both in Systems Engineering, from the University of Pennsylvania, U.S.A., in 1985 and 1986, respectively. From 1987 to 1995, he was a Lecturer in Engineering Science, the University of Oxford, U.K. From 1995 to 2002 he was Professor of Mechatronic Engineering at University of Sydney. He has been awarded two Australian Research Council (ARC) Federation Fellowships; in 2002 and 2007. He currently leads the ARC Centre of Excellence in Autonomous Systems and is the Research Director of the (Australian) Defense Centre of expertise in uninhabited and autonomous systems, and the Rio Tinto Centre for Mine Automation. His research work focuses on autonomous vehicle navigation and decentralized data fusion methods. His work in applications includes automation in cargo handling, mining, defense, and marine systems. He has published over 350 technical papers and has won numerous awards and prizes for his work. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Technical Sciences, a Fellow of the IEEE and an IEEE Robotics Society Distinguished Lecturer.


October 31, 2008
11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Event Category: