SE Research Videos

Christos Cassandras (ECE, SE) presents the 2014 BU College of Engineering Distinguished Scholar Lecture: “Complexity Made Simple…At a Small Price”

Recognizing senior and junior faculty for major contributions to their fields and to society at large, the College of Engineering has bestowed its annual Distinguished Scholar Award on Professor Christos Cassandras (ECE, SE).

The Distinguished Scholar Award honors senior faculty members who have helped move their field and society forward through outstanding, high-impact research, and provides the recipient with a public forum to discuss his or her work before the Boston University academic community.

In conjunction with his award, Cassandras delivered a public lecture, “Complexity Made Simple (at a Small Price)”. Cassandras highlights methods he’s developed to solve difficult problems by exploiting their specific structure, asking the “right” questions and challenging some conventional engineering approaches — and show how these methods have resulted in energy savings, enhanced security and other benefits.
Christos Cassandras (ECE, SE) talks about the future of parking in cities. (Video by Joe Chan)


Christos Cassandras (ECE, SE) talks about talks about the future of traffic control in cities.(Video by Joe Chan)


Watch researchers at John Baillieul’s (ECE, SE) Intelligent Mechatronics Lab design dancing robots.


In the video below, Professors Janusz Konrad (ECE) and Prakash Ishwar (ECE, SE) explain, and demonstrate, the computer algorithms they are developing to recognize a gesture, from your torso, your hand, or perhaps just your fingers. They hope this could be the future security portal to your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or the locked door to authorized personnel–only spaces.


BU’S SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY DREAM TEAM (in photo below from left to right) Wilson Wong, James Collins, Douglas Densmore, and Ahmad “Mo” Khalil. ENG’s James Collins (SE, MSE, BME) says synthetic biology is “genetic engineering on steroids.” As biologists continue the decades-long race to map the genomes of living things, a dynamic group of BU engineers is asking the kind of questions that engineers can’t help but ask: what if we built a different genome? Known as synthetic biologists, they believe that with some skillful genomic tweaks, living organisms, such as enzymes, cells, and microbes, can be put to work doing things that are too dangerous or not even possible for higher life forms like ourselves. (Video by Devin Hahn)


Professor John Baillieul’s (SE, ME, ECE) research group has designed an aerial vehicle to study how bats fly together without ever colliding. The “Batcopter” is helping the team study swarming bat trajectories, the data from which will allow engineers to develop smarter unmanned flight control systems. The video below is from


Professor Michael Caramanis (SE, ME) talks about Advanced Environmentally Sustainable Buildings. (Video edited by Chris Lynch , Boston University College of Engineering Distance Learning
Footage courtesy of IBM)


Professor Christos Cassandras (SE, ECE) talks about the Smart Parking app. Imagine, just before you leave the house, you enter your destination and a price range into your smart phone, and it returns directions to a parking spot right nearby that’s reserved just for you. That day may be coming soon, thanks to innovations by Boston University Systems Engineering researchers.


Associate Professor Calin Belta (SE, ME) and his research team discuss autonomous robotics, control theory and hybrid systems.