Presenter: Russell H. Taylor (Homepage)

Event Dates:
  Friday April 20, 2012 from 11:00am to 12:00pm

This talk will discuss ongoing NIH-funded research at Johns Hopkins University and Carnegie-Mellon University to develop technology and systems addressing fundamental limitations in current microsurgical practice, using vitreoretinal surgery as our focus.   Vitreoretinal surgery is the most technically demanding ophthalmologic discipline and addresses prevalent sight-threatening conditions in areas of growing need.  At the center of our planned approach is a “surgical workstation” system interfaced to a stereo visualization subsystem and a family of novel sensors, ins

Presenter's Biography:

Russell H. Taylor received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford in 1976.  He joined IBM Research in 1976, where he developed the AML robot language and managed the Automation Technology Department and (later) the Computer-Assisted Surgery Group before moving in 1995 to Johns Hopkins, where he is a Professor of Computer Science with joint appointments in Mechanical Engineering, Radiology, and Surgery and is also Director of the NSF Engineering Research Center for Computer-Integrated Surgical Systems and Technology.  He is the author of approximately 275 refereed publications, a Fellow of the IEEE, of the AIMBE, of the MICCAI Society, and of the Engineering School of the University of Tokyo.  He is also a recipient of the IEEE Robotics Pioneer Award, of the MICCAI Society Enduring Impact Award, and of the Maurice Müller award for excellence in computer-assisted orthopaedic surgery.

Monday May 23, 2011


Menglong Zhu at Penn has given PR2 a fantastic new skill: the ability to read. Using the literate_pr2 software he wrote, PR2 can drive around and read aloud the signs that it sees. Whether it's writing on a whiteboard, nameplates on a door, or posters advertising events, the ability to recognize text in the real world is an important skill for robots.

Wednesday May 11, 2011

Joe Romano is a GRASP PhD student under Katherine Kuchenbecker. His PR2_props code was demonstrated live at the Google I/O 2011 Developer Conference, May 10th and 11th, both on stage and as a demo . Hundreds of Google I/O attendees got to experience the joy of fist-bumping a robot (plus the high-five at the start of the I/O talk).  View the YouTube video.

Thursday May 12, 2011

The GRASP Lab had a fabulous and amazing showing at ICRA 2011 in Shanghai, China. Congratulations to all!!! The following award winners and finalists are listed below:

Best Conference Paper Award:
Daniel Mellinger and Vijay Kumar, Minimum Snap Trajectory Generation and Control for Quadrotors.

Best Associate Editor:
Katherine Kuchenbecker

Modular and Reconfigurable Robot Challenge Winner:
Mark Yim and the ModLab

Presenter: Facundo Mémoli (Homepage)

Event Dates:
  Thursday May 12, 2011 from 3:00am to 4:00am

It is well known that the hippocampus plays crucial role in creating a spatial representation of the environment and in forming spatial memories. However, the exact structure of this spatial representation remains unknown. Questions such as whether the experimentally observed patterns of activity of the hippocampal cells may even be considered as a single ?map?

Presenter's Biography:

Facundo Mémoli obtained the Ph.D. Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Minnesota in 2005. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Math Department at Stanford University where he works with the Computational Algebraic Topology group. Facundo's current research interests involve data and shape analysis, and the design and analysis of algorithms for performing these tasks.

Tuesday May 10, 2011

The University of Pennsylvania RASC-AL team passed the qualifing round has been accepted for competition at the inaugural RASC-AL Robo-Ops Forum.

Friday May 6, 2011

Karlin Bark, postdoc under Katherine Kuchenbecker, received one of five awards chosen annually from hundreds of applicants!

The fellowship description from the L'Oreal website,, is below...

Tuesday May 3, 2011

Innovation Award: GRASP Lab

Event Date(s):
  Tuesday April 26, 2011 at 12:00pm

Five classes.  207 students.  One event.  It's time for MEAMapalooza 2011!

Friday April 1, 2011

Penn Engineering has developed a suite of autonomous aerial robots that can autonomously navigate into unknown, three-dimensional environments, explore to obtain valuable information about the environment from its sensors and transmit this information in the form of a three-dimensional map to human operators who are safely located in a remote spot. All of the calculations required to fly, explore and map a structure is done onboard the robot; they do not rely on a human operator to control them.