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News from IRIM | April 8, 2021 Edition

Registration is open for the third annual Georgia Tech Robotics Research Showcase hosted by the Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines (IRIM).  This year’s event will be held virtually on the SpatialChat platform on Tuesday, April 13, 2021, from 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. EDT. 

Meet talented robotics students enrolled in engineering programs in Mechanical, Electrical & Computer, Aerospace, and Biomedical, as well as those enrolled in Computer Science. The group is a mixture of graduate and undergraduate students nearing graduation, mid-career students looking for internship opportunities, and new students looking to find promising research directions.  Each student will present a research poster, offering a virtual opportunity to see their work and their scientific process.

Register now to receive full event details:
If you have questions, please respond to this email.  I look forward to seeing you at the event.
Kind regards,

Seth Hutchinson
Executive Director, Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines
Professor and KUKA Chair for Robotics, School of Interactive Computing
Georgia Institute of Technology


School Chair & Robotics Pioneer Magnus Egerstedt Named Dean of Engineering School at University of California, Irvine

Magnus Egerstedt Irvine, Calif., April 1, 2021 – Highly respected robotics and control systems researcher Magnus Egerstedt will become the new dean of The Henry Samueli School of Engineering at the University of California, Irvine, following a nationwide search.
Egerstedt will take up his new post in July at a time when UCI will be preparing to resume in-person classroom and laboratory instruction and increase in-person research after more than a year emphasizing remote operations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Egerstedt has had a lengthy academic career at the Georgia Institute of Technology, where he began as an assistant professor in 2001, after serving as a postdoctoral scholar in electrical engineering at Harvard University.
His most recent role was as the Steve W. Chaddick School Chair in Georgia Tech’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, a highly ranked program with more than 100 faculty members, almost 2,400 undergraduate and graduate students, and a nearly $100 million annual budget.

Egerstedt’s research pursuits have centered on control theory and robotics. His work has resulted in innovations in remote environmental monitoring and precision agriculture, and he has recently been involved in breakthroughs in the control and coordination of complex networks, such as multirobot systems, mobile sensor networks and cyber-physical systems.

He led the creation of Georgia Tech’s Robotarium, a remotely accessible swarm robotics lab used by more than 3,000 researchers around the world. He also helped develop SlothBot, a hyper-energy-efficient environmental monitoring robot.
Congratulations to Dean Egerstedt!

National Robotics Week Update

2021 Trading Cards Now Online | Featuring 3 Georgia Tech Bots


2021 Robotics Week Trading Cards

iRobot teams up each year with IEEE Spectrum and Georgia Tech’s Institute for Robotics & Intelligent Machines (IRIM) to create a collectible set of robot trading cards.

This year we’re inviting you to design your own Robot All-Star! Download the template and tell us about your robot.

Each deck features ten famous robots developed by companies and researchers in the U.S. along with facts about each. Want more robots? Discover even more at the IEEE Guide to the World of Robotics.

Download the Deck and Template Here

Affiliate News | GT School of Music Student Teams with MIT to Develop a Robot that Senses Hidden Objects

Researchers have developed a robot that uses radio waves, which can pass through walls, to sense occluded objects. The robot, called RF-Grasp, combines this powerful sensing with more traditional computer vision to locate and grasp items that might otherwise be blocked from view. The advance could one day streamline e-commerce fulfillment in warehouses or help a machine pluck a screwdriver from a jumbled toolkit.

The research will be presented in May at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation. The paper’s lead author is Tara Boroushaki, a research assistant in the Signal Kinetics Group at the MIT Media Lab. Her MIT co-authors include Adib, who is the director of the Signal Kinetics Group; and Alberto Rodriguez, the Class of 1957 Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Other co-authors include Junshan Leng, a research engineer at Harvard University, and Ian Clester, a PhD student at Georgia Tech

Read the MIT Press Here
IRIM Faculty Lab Highlight
RobotIcs Perception and Learning (RIPL) Laboratory

Zsolt Kira | Assistant Professor; School of Interactive Computing, College of Computing.

Zsolt Kira is Assistant Professor at the School of Interactive Computing in the College of Computing. Zsolt is also affiliated with the Georgia Tech Research Institute and serve as an Associate Director of ML@GT which is the machine learning center recently created at Georgia Tech. Previously he was a Research Scientist at SRI International Sarnoff in Princeton, and before that received his Ph.D. in 2010 with Professor Ron Arkin as his advisor.

He leads the RobotIcs Perception and Learning (RIPL) lab. His areas of research specifically focus on the intersection of learning methods for sensor processing and robotics, developing novel machine learning algorithms and formulations towards solving some of the more difficult perception problems in these areas. He is especially interested in moving beyond supervised learning (un/semi/self-supervised and continual/lifelong learning) as well as distributed perception (multi-modal fusion, learning to incorporate information across a group of robots, etc.).

imagenet visualization

Learn more about the lab here
"Learning to Generate Grounded Visual Captions without Localization Supervision"

Presentation of work conducted by Chih-Yao Ma, Yannis Kalantidis, Ghassan AlRegib, Peter Vajda, Marcus Rohrbach, Zsolt Kira at Georgia Tech and Facebook.
This paper was accepted as a poster to the European Conference on Computer Vision 2020.

Full paper:

Decision & Control Lab Guest Lecture | Objective Learning for Autonomous Systems

Shaoshuai Mou: Assistant Professor; School of Aeronautics & Astronautics, Purdue University
April 9, 2021 – 2:00 pm in Bluejeans:
Abstract: Autonomous systems especially those driven under optimal control are usually associated with objective functions to describe their goals/tasks in specific missions. Since they are usually unknown in practice especially for complicated missions, learning such objective functions is significant to autonomous systems especially in their imitation learning and teaming with human. In this talk we will introduce our recent progress in objective learning based on inverse optimal control and inverse optimization, especially their applications in human motion segmentation, learning from sparse demonstrations, and learning with directional corrections. We will also present an end-to-end learning framework based on Pontryagin Principle, feedbacks and optimal control, which is able to treat solving inverse optimization, system identification, and some control/planning tasks as its special modes.
Bio: Dr. Shaoshuai Mou is an Assistant Professor in the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University. Before joining Purdue, he received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering at Yale University in 2014 and worked as a postdoc researcher at MIT for a year after that. His research interests include multi-agent autonomy and learning, distributed algorithms for control and optimization, human-machine teaming, resilience & cybersecurity, and also experimental research involving autonomous air and ground vehicles. Dr. Mou co-direct Purdue’s new Center for Innovation in Control, Optimization and Networks (ICON), which consists of more than 50 faculty and aims to integrate classical theories in control/optimization/networks with recent advance in machine learning/AI/data science to address fundamental challenges in autonomous and connected systems. For more information, please refer to
University Affiliate Event
 Virtual Seminar Series on the Intersection of Control &  Learning
Wednesdays 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. (Pacific Time)
Patricio Antonio Vela

April 28, 2021

Patricio Antonio Vela
Georgia Tech

To access the viewing information, please visit the series site here.
EVPR COVID News & Guidance

Reminder: Lab Personnel Density Guidance
Georgia Tech is piloting a revised guideline to accommodate laboratories with lower personnel numbers and sufficient excess space in their laboratory. Read the revised guideline.

Weekly Testing Locations
If you live or work on campus, we strongly encourage you to get tested weekly, even if you aren’t experiencing Covid-19 symptoms. This is an essential part of protecting yourself and the Georgia Tech community. There are several options for getting tested, both on and off campus. See the current schedules and locations at this link.

Vaccine Roll-Out
The Institute has been working diligently with the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) to develop a vaccine rollout plan for the entire campus community. This plan consists of consecutive phases with corresponding groups. See the vaccine plane here.

Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines (IRIM)
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266 Ferst Drive
Atlanta, GA 30332-3000

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