Seminars

Spring 2013 GRASP Seminar: Luis Sentis, University Of Texas, "Rough Terrain Mobility And Manipulation"

Presenter: Luis Sentis (Homepage)

Event Dates:
  Friday April 5, 2013 from 11:00am to 12:00pm

Everyday environments, such as urban or industrial settings, contain clutter and rough terrain topography. Traditionally, the approach to deal with those scenarios has been based on avoiding the clutter or by using low profile mobile robotic systems that can maneuver in the terrains. An exception to these approaches is the use of legged humanoid robots, where their small footprint and highly articulated bodies enable them to maneuver in the difficult environments. However, research addressing those sophisticated skills is still at a very early developmental stage. In this talk, I will present my research pursuit in two separate areas related to the previous problems: (1) on enabling mobile humanoid robots to maneuver in rough terrains while engaging into contact with the cluttered environment, and (2) on planning locomotion and multicontact trajectories of legged humanoids in extreme terrains. In particular, I will focus on the areas of compliant models for mobility, robust control of gaits in rough terrains, and the whole-body control software architecture. Examples using our humanoid robots Dreamer and Hume will be shown and discussed.


Presenter's Biography:

Dr. Sentis is Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin since 2010. He received his Ph.D and M.S. degrees from Stanford University in 2007 and 2000 respectively where he was also a Postdoctoral Fellow. He was awarded the prestigious La Caixa fellowship award in 1998 from Europe's leading savings bank, to pursue his graduate studies. He holds a B.S. (Honors Thesis) degree in Telecommunications and Electronics Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC) in 1996. He worked in Silicon Valley as a Control Systems Engineer where he programmed Fanuc Robots for the Clean Room Automation Industry. In Austin, he directs the Human Centered Robotics Laboratory(http://www.me.utexas.edu/~hcrl) , a 1200 sqft laboratory with 3 Research Fellows, 5 PhD Students, 5 Undergraduate Students, and 2 humanoid robots. His research focuses on mobile manipulation in rough terrain environments, extreme bipedal locomotion, and whole-body control architectures for humanoid robots. In his laboratory he and his personnel have built two compliant humanoid robots and created a set up for studies on rough terrain locomotion and manipulation. His research is funded by the Office of Naval Research, NASA, DARPA, and Willow Garage. He holds 35 Journal and Conference publications and a Patent in progress (provisional application), with 879 scientific citations, and an h-index factor of 14.