Recent advances in collision avoidance and motion planning for autonomous robots
Jur van den Berg
University of Utah


One of the main challenges in robotics is to create truly autonomous robots for home, hospital, and public environments. This talk will focus on the challenges of autonomous motion for mobile agents and presents an overview of my work on reciprocal collision avoidance, with applications in mobile robotics, crowd simulation, and animation of virtual characters for computer games. I will also discuss my recent work on planning and control under motion and sensing uncertainty with applications in medical robotics, such as automated robotic surgery and robotic control of steerable needles. Finally, the long-term prospects for the future development of robot autonomy as it relates to these application domains will be discussed.

Bio: Dr. Jur van den Berg obtained his MSc in Computer Science at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, in 2003. He obtained his PhD in Computer Science at Utrecht University, the Netherlands in 2007 with his thesis titled "Path Planning in Dynamic Environments". After that, he has been a postdoctoral researcher at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2007-2009, 2010-2011), and at the University of California, Berkeley (2009-2010). Since the summer of 2011, Jur is assistant professor in the School of Computing at the University of Utah. Jur's research interests lie in algorithmic robotics, with a particular focus on robot collision avoidance, planning, and control in application domains such as medical robotics, crowd simulation, virtual environments and computer games, autonomous transportation, and personal robotics.

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