[robotics-worldwide] Self-Reconfigurable Robots Workshop at IROS-2008.

Wei-Min Shen shen at ISI.EDU
Fri May 16 10:03:56 PDT 2008



   IROS-2008 workshop on Self-Reconfigurable Robots and Applications

              Nice France, September 22, 2008


Self-reconfigurable modular robots is an exciting research area that  
attracts more and more attentions. This full-day workshop is to bring  
together all active researchers in this area and exchange the newest  
results, the latest ideas, and the coolest applications, even if they  
only preliminary. A similar workshop was held in IROS-2007 in San  
Diego USA, and it had more than 40 participants and 14 presentations.  
We expect this will be another exciting event because many new  
research groups for self-reconfigurable robots are emerging around the  

Self-reconfigurable modular robots are metamorphic systems that can  
autonomously change their logical or physical configurations (such as  
shapes, sizes, or formations), as well as their locomotion and  
manipulation, based on the mission and the environment in hand.  
Because of their modularity, versatility, self-healing ability and low  
cost reproducibility, such robots provide a flexible approach for  
achieving complex tasks in unstructured and dynamic environments. They  
are well suited for applications such as search and rescue,  
reconnaissance, self-assembly, inspections in hazardous environments,  
and exploration in space and ocean. They also pose fundamental  
research challenges for robotics and other major branches of computer  
science, mechatronics and control theory.

Research in self-reconfigurable robots have been active in academic  
for many years, but it is only recently that the results of these  
research are beginning to be used and applied to serious real-world  
applications such as sustainable space exploration, homeland security,  
and others. This workshop comes at the right time because many  
researchers are seeing the values of the field, and many companies are  
beginning to investigate their resources, and because it has become  
ever convincing that modularity and reconfiguration are the keys to  
construct large systems reliably and economically.

Specific research challenges for self-reconfigurable robots include  
the dynamic topology of the network of modules, the limited resource  
(power, size, torque, precisions, etc.) of individual modules, the  
difficulties in global synchronization, the preclusion of centralized  
decision makers, and the unreliability of communication among modules.  
This workshop will present the recent progress in the research  
community for these challenging tasks and their real-world  
applications in space and other related fields. We will present and  
discuss the latest hardware progress, distributed control software,  
plug-and-play mechatronics, topology-triggered behaviors, and theories  
of self-reconfiguration. The outcome of the workshop will be a set of  
papers and a list of new hardware/software challenges for the future  
of this exciting research area.

We welcome all participants from universities, research labs,  
industrial companies, and government agencies, who are interested in  
either research such as modular robots, embedded systems, distributed  
control, sensor networks, robot swarms, coupling mechanisms, and  
mechatronics, or applications such as space, underwater, or other  
complex and difficult environments.

Interested parties please submit your papers before July 25 2008 and  
the length of the paper should be 3 pages or more. For more  
information please visit the workshop's website or email to Dr. Wei- 
Min Shen at shen at isi.edu.

Sincerely yours,

Wei-Min Shen, USC Information Sciences Institute, shen at isi.edu
Hod Lipson, Cornell University,  Hod.Lipson at cornell.edu
Kasper Stoy, University of Southern Denmark, kaspers at mmmi.sdu.dk
Mark Yim, University of Pennsylvania , yim at grasp.cis.upenn.edu
Greg Chirikjian, John Hopkins University, gregc at jhu.edu
Behnam Salemi, USC Information Sciences Institute, salemi at isi.edu


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