Lockheed Martin Robotics Seminar: Richard Voyles, "National Robotics Initiative & Innovation Corps"
Friday, November 30, 2012
1105 Kim Bldg (Pepco Room)
The National Robotics Initiative and Innovation Corps
Richard M. Voyles
National Robotics Initiative
Robust Intelligence and Innovation Corps
National Science Foundation
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 humans 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.
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 a Program Director in the National Robotics Initiative, Robust Intelligence, and Innovation Corps programs at the National Science Foundation and a Senior Member of the IEEE. On leave from the University of Denver, Dr. Voyles is an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Previously, he was Associate Professor of Computer Science at the University of Minnesota and a Site Director of the NSF Safety, Security, and Rescue Research Center. Dr. Voyles' research interests are in the areas of cyber physical systems, 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, real-time control, and robotic manipulation. 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, including The Works, a hands-on, minds-on engineering discovery center.