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IfA Open House

On Tuesday, November 28th 2017, the Automatic Control Laboratory (IfA) would like to welcome all students interested in automatic control to the IfA Open House.
The event starts at 4.15pm in (HG E7) with an introduction to the different groups in our lab given by the four IfA professors: John Lygeros, Florian Dörfler, Maryam Kamgarpour, and Roy Smith. Following the introduction, there will be different stations where current research topics are presented. We would like to encourage you to take this opportunity to get in touch with members of IfA and find interesting semester and master projects. The event ends with a closing apero.

Time Schedule
4:15 - 5:00pm: presentations by professors (HG E7)
5:00 - 6:15pm: various stations showcasing the current research topics (logistics to be explained on the day)
6:15 - 7:00pm: informal mini-stations where you can have one-on-one discussion about the research topics that appel to your interests

Research Station Descriptions
The following gives a short description of the stations that will be showcasing the current research topics from the lab.

Game Theory for Large Systems

An aggregative game describes a population of systems which influence each other through the population average strategy and aim at selfishly maximizing their individual payoffs. Our research focuses on decentralized algorithms to find population equilibria, by making use of mathematical optimization and fixed point theory. Relevant applications are the charging coordination of a fleet of plug-in electric vehicles and the shortest-path problem in a traffic congested network.
More information available here

Future Smart Cities

Building energy management is an active field of research where the potential in energy savings can be substantial. Sources of energy have increased with the introduction of renewables and the possibility of cooperative energy management. Significant efficiency gains can be envisaged but require sophisticated control systems that can handle the variability in energy prices, supplies and reliability in the presence of operational uncertainties, such as weather and occupancy. A substantial prerequisite for efficient building energy management is a proper building model. However, the experiental design for identification has serious limitations and also suffers from uncertainties.
More information available here

Distributed Smart Energy Systems

The electricity grid is one of the backbones of modern societies. Every year multiple trillion dollars worth of electricity is consumed globally. However, the ongoing transformation of the energy system towards renewable sources puts the reliability and security of supply at risk.
We investigate these new challenges from a theoretical viewpoint. Our goal is to identify conditions that guarantee robust and efficient operation of power systems at different conceptual levels and to develop control algorithms that reach these favorable operating states.
In our Semester and Master projects, we offer students the opportunity to learn about large-scale infrastructure systems and the tools to analyze them- such as optimization and control over networks, graph theory, and non-linear system dynamics.
More information available here

Control of Complex Networks

Networks of dynamical systems arise naturally in many different areas of science and engineering. Examples of complex networks range from neural networks to the electric power system, social networks, and smart cities. Our goal is not only to study dynamical phenomena over networks, i.e., how the local behavior of a part of the system shapes the evolution of the overall network system, but to investigate novel control techniques for influencing complex systems through control. This naturally leads to the analysis and design of large-scale distributed systems, including physical and socio-technical systems as well as their interconnection with complex distributed decision making systems.

Airborne Wind Energy

The aim of the airborne wind energy project is to achieve fully-autonomous flight of kites for power generation. Such kite systems exhibit highly nonlinear dynamics and are limited to ground-based actuation and sensing. To tackle these challenges we offer Semester and Master projects in system identification, modelling, estimation and control of kites.
Most projects provide a balance between hardware and theoretical development and consist of a strong experimental component during field tests at different locations in Switzerland.
More information available here

RoboCup, nomadZ

Founded as an interdisciplinary group project, the nomadZ team competes with international university teams in annual robotics tournaments as part of the Standard Platform League (SPL) wherein our humanoid robots perform 5v5 soccer matches. Supported by the two institutes IfA/CVL, the team consists of several PhDs, teaching assistants and students that contribute to the project as part of their Semester/Master Theses. Offering a wide variety of topics in computer vision, motion mechanics and behavior control, our aim is to link scientific work with competition as a motivating factor.
More information available here

Distributed Flying and Localization

D-FaLL (the Distributed Flying and Autonomous Localization Laboratory) is a new endevour at IfA with two main short term goals. To create a robust flying area that will be used to educate bechelor and masters students about all aspects of quadrotor control and esimation, from PID right through to racing with Non-Linear Model Predictive Control. The other goal is to develop optimization-based localization techniques, both in theory and practice, and ultimately implement these techniques on our fleet of nano quadcopters.
If you are interested to pursue a project on either on these topic, then get in touch with us.
More information available here

Autonomous Racing

The ORCA (Optimal RC Racing) Project developed (and improves) a test bed consisting of a race track, a infrared camera based tracking system and modified 1:43 dnano RC cars, in order to study control algorithms allowing high-speed, real-time control. Besides, the continuous improvement of the experimental set-up, we focus on designing control algorithms that allow races between several fully autonomous race cars.
More information available here

Type of Seminar:
Public Seminar
organized by the IfA laboratory
Nov 28, 2017   16:15

Contact Person:

Paul Beuchat, Bala Poolla, Yvonne Stürz
No downloadable files available.
Biographical Sketch: