Daniel Koditschek, Alfred Fitler Moore Professor in the Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering, has been named the recipient of the 2016-17 George H. Heilmeier Faculty Award for Excellence in Research for "pioneering contributions in robot motion planning and legged locomotion."
The Heilmeier Award honors a Penn Engineering faculty member whose work is scientifically meritorious and has high technological impact and visibility. It is named for George H. Heilmeier, a Penn Engineering alumnus and overseer whose technological contributions include the development of liquid crystal displays and whose honors include the National Medal of Science and Kyoto Prize.
Koditschek received his bachelor's degree in Engineering and Applied Science and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering in 1981 and 1983, all from Yale University. He served on the Yale Faculty in Electrical Engineering until moving to the University of Michigan a decade later. In January 2005, he moved to Penn as Chair of the Electrical and Systems Engineering Department, a position which he held through 2012.
His research interests include robotics and, more generally, the application of dynamical systems theory to intelligent mechanisms. He is a member of the ACM, AMS, ASME, MAA, SIAM, and Sigma Xi and is a Fellow of the IEEE and the AAAS. He won the 2016 IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Pioneer Award and a 2016 Vannevar Bush Fellowship by the US Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering. Koditschek holds secondary appointments within the School of Engineering and Applied Science in the departments of Computer and Information Science and Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics.