February 20, 2014, Joao Hespanha, University of California at Santa Barbara

Thursday, February 20, 2014 at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
110 Cummington Mall, Room 245

Refreshments served at 1:45.

HespanhaJoao Hespanha
University of California at Santa Barbara

Opportunities and Challenges in Control Systems Design Arising from Ubiquitous Computation and Network Communication

Advances in VLSI (Very Large Scale Integration) design and fabrication have resulted in the availability of low-cost, low-power, small-sized devices that have significant computational power and are able to communicate wirelessly. In addition, advances in MEMS (Micro Electric Mechanical Systems) technology have resulted in wide availability of solid-state sensors and actuators. The net result is ubiquitous sensing, communication, and computation that can be incorporated into small low-power devices.

In this talk, I will demonstrate that the above-mentioned technological advances present important opportunities and interesting challenges for control system designers. To this effect, I will describe recent work demonstrating that optimization-based approaches to path planning – which have been enabled by fast computation – can lead to solutions that significantly outperform previously proposed heuristics. I will also discuss how the introduction of digital communication in control loops gives rise to a need for new tools for the design and analysis of feedback control systems.

João P. Hespanha received his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering and applied science from Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut in 1998. From 1999 to 2001, he was Assistant Professor at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. He moved to the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2002, where he currently holds a Professor position with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Prof. Hespanha is the Chair of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a member of the Executive Committee for the Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies (ICB).

His current research interests include hybrid and switched systems; multi-agent control systems; distributed control over communication networks (also known as networked control systems); the use of vision in feedback control; stochastic modeling in biology; and network security.

Dr. Hespanha is the recipient of the Yale University’s Henry Prentiss Becton Graduate Prize for exceptional achievement in research in Engineering and Applied Science, a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, the 2005 best paper award at the 2nd Int. Conf. on Intelligent Sensing and Information Processing, the 2005 Automatica Theory/Methodology best paper prize, the 2006 George S. Axelby Outstanding Paper Award, and the 2009 Ruberti Young Researcher Prize. Dr. Hespanha is a Fellow of the IEEE and an IEEE distinguished lecturer since 2007.

Hosting Professor: John Baillieul
Student Host: Bowen Zhang