Monday Nov. 5 9:00AM Brazos Amphitheater

RoboCupRescue Dream

Prof. Satoshi Tadokoro

RoboCupRescue initiative started on 1998 and its competition has had many participating teams and funs since 2001 for more than ten years. It had significant contribution to advancement of robotics for disaster response and recovery.  For example, Quince would not have been able to survey the nuclear reactor buildings of Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, if our team had not participated in the worldwide competitions.  In this talk, I would like to remind and reconsider the dream of RoboCupRescue for the future safety, security and rescue robotics.

Satoshi Tadokoro received the B. E. degree in precision machinery engineering in 1982, the M. E. degree in 1984 from the University of Tokyo, and the D. E. degree in 1991. He was an associate professor of Kobe University in 1993-2005, and has been a professor of Graduate School of Information Sciences (GSIS), Tohoku University since 2005, and is a Deputy Dean of GSIS in 2012-2013. In 2012, he joined newly established International Research Institute of Disaster Sciences in Tohoku University. He was a project leader of MEXT DDT Project on rescue robotics in 2002-2007 having contribution of more than 100 professors nationwide, and NEDO Project that developed a rescue robot Quince which is being used at the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident since June 2011. He established RoboCupRescue in 1999, TC on Rescue Engineering of SICE in 2000 (the first chair), IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) TC on Safety, Security and Rescue Robotics in 2001 (the first co-chair), and International Rescue System Institute (IRS) in 2002. He was IEEE RAS Japan Chapter Chair in 2003-2005, trustee of The RoboCup Federation in 2005-2010, Chair of JSME Robotics Mechatronics Division (RMD) in 2009,IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) AdCom Member in 2008-2010. He is at present President of IRS, and IEEE RAS Vice President for Technical Activities in 2012-2013. He received IEEE Fellow in 2009, JSME Fellow in 2005, SICE Fellow in 2011, The Robot Award 2008, FDMA Commissioner Highest Award in 2008, JSME Funai Award in 2007, Best Book Author Award from AEM Society in 2006, JSME Robotics and Mechatronics Award in 2011, JSME Robotics and Mechatronics Academic Achievement Award in 2005, etc. He published Rescue Robotics from Springer, RoboCupRescue from Kyoritsu Publ., etc. His research interest is in rescue robotics, virtual reality and new actuators.

Tuesday Nov. 6 9:00AM Brazos Amphitheater

Prof. Hajime Asama

Robot & Remote-Controlled Machine Technology for Response against Accident of Nuclear Power Plants toward Decommission

The Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami occurred in March 11, 2011, and the accident of Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant occurred due to the earthquake and the tsunami. There have been lots of needs of remote-controlled machine technology including robot technology (RT) for the response against the accident. Especially, in the case of accident of the nuclear power plant, various tasks are required to accomplish in the high-radiation environment, and utilization of remote-controlled machine technology was essential. In this presentation, it is introduced how the technology has been introduced and utilized in the emergent situation of the accident, and what kind of technology is still demanded for the middle-range and long-range missions towards decommission of the nuclear power plants. It is also analyzed why the robot technology developed in the projects in Japan so far could not be introduced smoothly in the emergent situation, and issues are discussed how we should prepare for the disasters and accidents that can occur in future, including not only practical technology development but also maintenance of technology, training of operators, their system and organization such as mockups and test fields, and political strategy to realize it.

Speaker Bio: Hajime Asama received his B. S., M. S., and Dr. Eng in Engineering from the University of Tokyo, in 1982, 1984 and 1989, respectively. He was Research Associate, Research Scientist, and Senior Research Scientist in RIKEN (The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research, Japan) from 1986 to 2002. He became a professor of RACE (Research into Artifacts, Center for Engineering), the University of Tokyo in 2002, and a professor of School of Engineering, the University of Tokyo in 2009. He received JSME (Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers) Robotics and Mechatronics Division Academic Achievement Award in 2001, RSJ (Robotics Society of Japan) Best paper Award, JSME Robotics and Mechatronics Award in 2009, etc. He is the vice-president of Robotics Society of Japan since 2011. He was an AdCom member of IEEE Robotics and Automation Society from 2007 to 2009, an editor of Journal of International Journal of Intelligent Service Robotics, Journal of Field Robotics, Journal of Robotics and Autonomous Systems. He played the director of the Mobiligence (Emergence of adaptive motor function through the body, brain and environment) program in the MEXT Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Priority Areas from 2005 to 2009. He is a Fellow of JSME since 2004 and RSJ since 2008. Currently, he is a member of Headquarter of Mid-term and Long-term Research and Development Promotion of Japanese Government and TEPCO, a member of Advisory Committee on Medium-range and Long-range Measures for Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant of Japan Atomic Energy Commission, the leader of Project on Disaster Response Robots and Their Operation System of Council on Competitiveness-Japan, and the chairman of Robotics Task Force for Anti-Disaster (ROBOTAD). His main research interests are distributed autonomous robotic systems, ambient intelligence, service engineering, and Mobiligence, and service robotics.

Tuesday Nov 6 2:00PM Brazos Amphitheater

Gill A. Pratt, PhD

DARPA - Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, USA

Today’s DARPA Robotics Programs: Towards a Symbiosis of Productivity and Protection

Developers of today’s commercial and defense robots have much to be proud of. Commercial robots are increasingly raising the productivity of human labor. Defense robots are better protecting human lives. But we have barely begun to benefit from what robots can do. The potential of both commercial and military robots will be better realized when the enhancement of both productivity and protection are synergistically combined. This talk will give an overview of DARPA’s current robotics programs, and describe how our programs are advancing several capabilities necessary for the synergy of productivity and protection, including supervised autonomy, affordability, mobility, dexterity, speed, and energy efficiency. The talk will conclude with an in depth look at the upcoming DARPA Robotics Challenge, including continued opportunities for participation.

Speaker Bio: Dr. Gill Pratt joined DARPA as a program manager in the Defense Sciences Office (DSO) in January 2010. He presently manages the Autonomous Robotic Manipulation (ARM), Maximum Mobility and Manipulation (M3), Nano Air Vehicle (NAV), Cognitive Technology Threat Warning System (CT2WS), System of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics (SyNAPSE) and DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) programs. Dr. Pratt’s primary interest is in the field of robotics. Specific areas include the development of declarative design methods that enhance the symbiosis between designer and design tool, rapid fabrication methods, interfaces that enhance human/machine collaboration, mechanisms and control methods for enhanced mobility and manipulation, and innovative actuators. He also has a strong interest in the application of neuroscience techniques to robot perception and control. Dr. Pratt holds a doctorate in electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the field of neurophysiology. He was an associate professor and director of the Leg Lab at MIT. Subsequently, he became a professor at Franklin W. Olin College, and before joining DARPA, was Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs and Research. Dr. Pratt holds several patents in series elastic actuation, computer architecture, and adaptive control.

Wednesday Nov. 7 9:00AM Brazos Amphitheater

The National Robotics Initiative and Innovation Corps

Richard M. Voyles, PhD

  The U.S. National Robotics Initiative (NRI) is a new, multi-agency program from the Executive Office to spur American research and development in the field of co-robots. Announced in June of last year by President Obama in front of an excited crowd at Carnegie Mellon University, the NRI mirrors efforts around the world to accelerate the development of next-generation co-robotic systems that work symbiotically with humans, extending human capabilities and the human’s sphere of influence. This program represents a sizable investment for U.S.-based robotics researchers and enlarges the pie from which robotics research can be funded. It also reflects the growing recognition that the field of robotics is of strategic importance to the intellectual and economic future of the worldwide community. The following month, the President announced the Innovation Corps, an NSF-wide initiative to encourage technology transfer from academic labs to the private sector. These initiatives are just a few examples of the tremendous opportunities for robotics research and robotics commercialization that will dominate this decade and beyond, not only in the U.S., but worldwide.   With the first round of the NRI now complete, this talk will outline the goals and individual successes of the roughly $50M recurring research program. Guidelines for participation will be explained for both industry and academia, as well as exciting new directions for participation across the spectrum from long-term research, technology transfer, industry/university collaboration, to SBIR development.\

Speaker Bio: Dr. Voyles received the B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University in 1983, the M.S. in Manufacturing Systems Engineering from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University in 1989, and the Ph.D. in Robotics from the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University in 1997. He is currently serving as Program Director at the National Science Foundation leading the National Robotics Initiative as well as a founding PD of the Innovation Corps program. He is currently on leave from the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Denver where he is Associate Professor. He is also a Senior Member of the IEEE. He was at the University of Minnesota from 1997 to 2006 in Computer Science and has served as Site Director of the NSF Safety, Security, and Rescue Research Center, an NSF I/UCRC, at both the University of Minnesota and the University of Denver. Dr. Voyles’ research interests are in the areas of robotics and artificial intelligence. Specifically, he is interested in the development of small, resource-constrained robots and robot teams for urban search and rescue and surveillance. Dr. Voyles has additional expertise in sensors and sensor calibration, particularly haptic and force sensors, and real-time control. Dr. Voyles’ industrial experience includes Dart Controls, IBM Corp., Integrated Systems, Inc., and Avanti Optics. He has also served on the boards of various start-ups and non-profit groups