Events 2020

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SOPHIA "Socio-Physical Interaction Skills for Cooperative Human-Robot Systems in Agile Production” (IRIM-WS97)

Collaborative robotics has established itself as a major force in pushing forward highly adaptive and flexible production paradigms in European large and small-medium enterprises. It is contributing to the sustainability and enhancement of Europe’s efficient and competitive manufacturing, to reshoring production, and to economic growth. However, still today the potential of collaborative technologies is largely underexploited. Indeed, collaborative robots are most often designed to coexist and to safely share a working space with humans. They are rarely thought to enter in direct socio-physical contact with humans to perceive, understand, and react to their distress or needs, and to enable them to work more productively and efficiently through better ergonomics. In this workshop we discuss transdisciplinary research challenges and directions, which cross the boundaries between robotics, ergonomics and human behavior modelling, to respond to this need by developing a new generation of socially cooperative human-robot systems in agile production. We discuss which could be the key points and possible solutions for achieving a reconfigurable and resource-efficient production, improving human comfort, reducing work-related musculoskeletal disorders, and trusting in automation, in hybrid human-plus-robot manufacturing environments. To this aim, we will bring together different research perspectives within and beyond the SOPHIA project.

10:00 - 10:05 Welcome by Organizers
10:05 - 10:25 Talk 1: Maria Pozzi
10:25 - 10:45 Talk 2: Alberto Ravanolo
10:45- 10:55 Coffee break
10:55 - 11:15 Talk 3: Bram Vanderborght
11:15 - 11:35 Talk 4: Pauline Maurice
11:35 - 12:00 Panel Discussion
12:00 - 15:00 Lunch break
15:00 - 15:05 Welcome again
15:05 - 15:25 Talk 5: Lucia Pallottino
15:25 - 15.45 Talk 6: Meghan Huber
15:45 - 16:05 Talk 7: Massimo Sartori
16:05 - 16:20 Coffee break
16:20 - 16:40 Talk 8: Andrea Zanchettin
16:40 - 17:00 Talk 9: Patricia Rosen
17:00 - 17:20 Talk 10: Arash Ajoudani
17:20 - 18:00 Panel discussion


Thursday 10 December

From 10.10 am to 7.00 pm CET

Event on

Federica Barontini (Organizer)

Federica Barontini is a PhD student at the University of Pisa. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering (2011) and a master’sdegree in Robotics and Automation Engineering (2016). During her Master thesis,she developed and implemented a control strategy for a wearable haptic device able to give navigational stimuli to blind users. After her master’s degree, she worked as engineer at the Italian Institute of Technologies, continuing her research activity on haptic feedback strategies for teleoperation and prosthetics. She worked on the control of a Force Feedback device used to convey hand closure (proprioception) and force information to amputees using a obotic hand to grasp. She tested these techniques both with able bodied participants and amputees at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, USA.She investigated Haptic Feedback, Human Robot Interaction, and Teleoperation by studying how to render information to an operator controlling two robotic arms to manipulate large objects. The robots were controlled using a wearable system comprising inertial measurement units (IMUs) and electro-myographics sensors (EMG). In another study she worked in, naïve users were instructed to perform “Peg in hole” task while controlling both position and stiffness of the robot using also MYO sensors.

Bram Vanderborght

Prof. dr. ir. Bram Vanderborght obtained his PhD from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in 2007. He performed research in AIST, Tsukuba (Japan) and the Italian Institute of Technology in Genova (Italy). Since October 2009 he is appointed as professor at the VUB. He had an ERC starting grant on SPEA actuation concept and is coordinator of the EU FET project SHERO on self healing soft robots and EU Marie Curie ITN on smart materials for robots. He is core lab manager of Flanders Make and member of, the Brussels Human Robotics Research Center. His research interests include cognitive and physical human robot interaction with core technology of soft actuators in applications for health and manufacturing as exoskeletons, prostheses, cobots and social robots. He is the current EiC of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine

Alberto Ranavolo

Alberto Ranavolo is Researcher at the Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Epidemiology and Hygiene of INAIL, the Italian Workers' Compensation Authority. MSc degree in Electronic Engineering at Federico II University of Naples and PhD in Rehabilitation Medicine of the locomotor System at Sapienza University of Rome. His main research interests are human factors and ergonomics, job accommodation, clinical biomechanics, neurophysiology, movement disorders and movement analysis. He dedicated special attention to instrumental-based techniques for the biomechanical risk assessment in lifting activities and repetitive movements. Furthermore, he focused his interest on “back to work” of workers affected by several musculoskeletal disorders. He is author of about 70 scientific papers in international peer-review journals and 3 paragraphs of national and international books and encyclopedias. He is currently professor at the University’s Master in Neurorehabilitation at Sapienza University of Rome, he is serving as INAIL PI in the H2020 “SOPHIA” project and as Guest Editor of the Special Issue “Wearable Monitoring and Assistive Devices for the Risk Prevention and Return to Work” (IJERPH). Alberto Ranavolo is in the Editorial Committee and serves as reviewer for many journals in the area of biomedical engineering. He will be the co-chairman of the 21th SIAMOC conference in Rome.

Patricia Rosen

Patricia Helen Rosen is a research associate within the unit “Human Factors, Ergonomics” at the German Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA). She holds a psychology degree and has broad knowledge in working in multidisciplinary teams. Her fields of expertise are human-centered workplace design and human-robot interaction (HRI). In her research, she focuses on cognitive ergonomics in relation to HRI, like the assessment of HRI-quality or task design in HRI teams. She is about to finish her PhD studies in this area. Within the unit “Human Factors, Ergonomics” she supervises the working group "Physical Work Assistance". She is one of the young delegates for the German human factors association (GfA-NEXT) and an active member of the Technical Committee Human Factors in Robotics of the International Ergonomics Association.

Meghan Huber

Meghan Huber is an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at UMass Amherst and the principal investigator of the Human Robot Systems Laboratory. The mission of the lab is to (1) improve human-robot physical interaction using principles from human neuromotor control and perception and (2) advance how humans and robots learn to guide the physical interactive behavior of one another. Her prior research focused on assessing and enhancing complex motor skill learning using virtual environments. She also developed multiple virtual rehabilitation systems for in-home use and worked on teams developing virtual training simulations for medical and military purposes. Before joining UMass Amherst, she was a postdoctoral research associate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the Newman Laboratory under the direction of Professor Neville Hogan from 2016-2020. She received her Ph.D. in Bioengineering from Northeastern University in 2016 under the advisement of Prof. Dagmar Sternad, her M.S. degree in Biomedical Engineering from The University of Texas at Dallas in 2011, and her B.S. degree in Biomedical Engineering from Rutgers University in 2009. During her doctoral training, she was also a Visiting Junior Scientist in the Autonomous Motion Department at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Tübingen, Germany in 2014.

Andrea Maria Zanchettin

PhD program in Information Technology at Politecnico di Milano. During Spring 2010, he spent a research stay at the Department of Automatic Control (Reglerteknik) at Lund University. He obtained his PhD in Information Technology in 2012 from Politecnico di Milano, with a dissertation entitled "Human-centric behaviour of redundant manipulators under kinematic control". From January 2012 until February 2014 he has been a temporary research assistant at the Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria (DEIB). From March 2014 to September 2016, he has been a fixed-term assistant professor at DEIB. In September 2014, Andrea Zanchettin has been the recipient of the Young Author Best Paper Award (see more), sponsored by the IEEE RAS Italian Chapter (I-RAS). From October 2016 to October 2019, he has been a tenure-track assistant professor at DEIB, where he is currently Associate Professor. His research interests are about mechatronic systems, automatic control and intelligent human-robot interaction. Andrea Zanchettin has been member of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society since 2009.

Giuseppe Bruno Averta (Organizer)

Dr. Giuseppe Averta is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Pisa, where he got his B.S. in Biomedical Engineering and his M.S. in Robotics, with honors, in 2013 and 2016, respectively. In 2020, he obtained a Ph.D. in Robotics from the same institution with the dissertation ”Human-aware robotics: Modeling human motor skills for the design, planning, and control of a new generation of robotic devices”. He is also an Italian Institute of Technology Alumnus. In 2019, he was a visiting student at the Eric P. and Evelyn E. Newman Laboratory for Biomechanics and Human Rehabilitation Group at MIT. Giuseppe’s research interests are in the study of human movement in healthy and pathological conditions and in the implementation of human-inspired design, planning, and control guidelines for autonomous, collaborative, assistive, and prosthetic robots.

Gemma Carolina Bettelani (Organizer)

Gemma Carolina Bettelani is a phd student at the Research Center E. Piaggio and Department of Information Engineering of the University of Pisa. She received her bachelor degree in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Pisa in 2014, and her master degree in Robotics and Automation Engineering at the University of Pisa in 2017. In 2018, she won the RAS Haptics Grant promoted by the IEEE RAS Technical Committee on Haptics to develop the project “Readable”, Reliable electromagnetic refreshable Braille display.. From January to March 2020 was visiting PhD student at ISIR Lab Sorbonne Univeritè. Gemma's research focuses on design and validation of assistive devices and on mathematical modeling of the sense of touch.

Maria Pozzi

Maria Pozzi is a Postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Information Engineering and Mathematics of the University of Siena since 2018. She works within the "Human Centered Robotics Group" of the "Siena Robotics and Systems Lab (SIRSLab)". She received the B.S. degree in Computer and Information Engineering and the M.S. degree in Computer and Automation Engineering, both cum laude, from the University of Siena, Italy, in 2013 and 2015, respectively. Between 2015 and 2018 she carried out her Ph.D. in Information Engineering and Science at the University of Siena, in collaboration with the Italian Institute of Technology in Genoa. In 2019, she obtained the Ph.D. with a Thesis entitled "Grasping and Manipulation with Soft Robotic Hands". Currently, she is collaborating on the research activities of the national PRIN project “TIGHT: Tactile InteGration for Humans and arTificial systems”. In 2018, she won the RAS Haptics Grant promoted by the IEEE RAS Technical Committee on Haptics to develop the project "WHOT? Wearable haptics for fluent Human-robOT collaboration", and in 2019 she won the Award for Best Oral Presentation of the first Italian Conference of Robotics and Intelligent Machines (I-RIM 3D). Maria Pozzi serves as reviewer for the main international robotics journals and conferences and her main research interests include: grasp planning with soft hands, haptic interfaces for human-robot collaboration, modeling and simulation of soft robots and educational robotics.

Arash Ajoudani (Organizer)

is a tenured senior scientist at the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), where he leads the Human-Robot Interfaces and physical Interaction (HRI²) laboratory. He received his PhD degree in Robotics and Automation from University of Pisa and IIT in July 2014. His PhD thesis was a finalist for the Georges Giralt PhD award 2015 - best European PhD thesis in robotics. He is a recipient of the European Research Council (ERC) starting grant 2019. He was a winner of the Amazon Research Awards 2019, the winner of the Solution Award 2019 (Premio Innovazione Robotica at MECSPE2019), the winner of the KUKA Innovation Award 2018, the winner of the Werob best poster award 2018, a finalist for the best conference paper award at Humanoids 2018, a finalist for the best interactive paper award at Humanoids 2016, a finalist for the best oral presentation award at Automatica (SIDRA) 2014, the winner of the best student paper award and a finalist for the best conference paper award at ROBIO 2013, and a finalist for the best manipulation paper award at ICRA 2012. He is the coordinator of the Horizon-2020 project SOPHIA with a consortium of 12 partners from the leading European research and industrial organisations. He has contributed to several successful European projects (H2020 and FP7) such as WALKMAN, WearHap, SOMA, and SoftPro. He is the author of the book "Transferring Human Impedance Regulation Skills to Robots" in the Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics (STAR), and several publications in journals, international conferences, and book chapters. He is currently serving as the executive manager of the IEEE-RAS Young Reviewers' Program (YRP), and as chair and representative of the IEEE-RAS Young Professionals Committee. He has been serving as a member of scientific advisory committee and as an associate editor for several international journals and conferences such as IEEE RAL, Biorob, ICORR, etc. His main research interests are in physical human-robot interaction and cooperation, robotic manipulation, robust and adaptive control, assistive robotics, and tele-robotics.

Massimo Sartori

Massimo Sartori is an Associate Professor at the University of Twente where he direct the Neuromechanical Modelling & Engineering Lab. His research focuses on interfacing wearable robots with the neuromuscular system for enhancing human movement. On these topics he has obtained personal grants (e.g. ERC, MSCA), awards (e.g. OpenSim Outstanding Research), and is acting-PI in consortium-based EU projects. Dr Sartori conducted his PhD across the Universities of Padova (Italy), Western Australia (Australia) and Stanford (USA), with post-doctoral fellowships at the University of Göttingen (Germany) and Griffith University (Australia). He is Associate Editor at the IEEE TNSRE and member of leading scientific societies including IEEE RAS, EMBS, ICORR, and European Society of Biomechanics.

Pauline Maurice

Pauline Maurice is a CNRS research scientist, working in the LARSEN team of the LORIA laboratory in Nancy, France. She received her engineering degree from Ecole Polytechnique and her M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from University Pierre et Marie Curie (France) in 2011. She received her PhD in Robotics from University Pierre et Marie Curie in 2015. She conducted her PhD research work jointly at CEA-LIST and at the Institute for Intelligent Systems and Robotics in Paris, France, under the supervision of Philippe Bidaud and Vincent Padois. From 2015 to 2017, she was a postdoctoral researcher in the Action Lab of Prof. Dagmar Sternad at Northeastern University (USA). From 2017 to 2019, she was a postdoctoral researcher at Inria Nancy Grand Est (France), working with Serena Ivaldi. Her research interests focus on experimental and computational human motion analysis in the context of physical human-robot interaction. Her research aims at developing human-centered designs and controllers for collaborative robots and exoskeletons, to improve work-related ergonomics.

Simone Fani (Organizer)

Dr. Simone Fani is a postdoctoral researcher at the Research Center E. Piaggio of the University of Pisa. He received his bachelor degree in Information Engineering with curriculum in Automatic Systems and Industrial Automation at the University of Siena in 2011, and his master degree in Robotics and Automation Engineering at the University of Pisa in 2015. He obtained his Ph.D. in Robotics at the same institution in 2020 with the dissertation "Wearable Haptics for Advanced Human Robot Interaction". He is also an Italian Institute of Technology Alumnus. In 2015 he was visiting student in the Marco Santello Neural Control of Movement Laboratory at the Arizona State University. In 2019, he was visiting student in the Yon Visell ReTouch Lab at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Simone's research focuses on the design and validation of haptic interfaces for prosthetics and tele-operation systems, medical and rehabilitation robotics, and mathematical modeling of the sense of touch.

Lucia Pallottino

Lucia Pallottino is currently Associate Professor at the Centro di Ricerca "E. Piaggio" and the Dipartimento di Ingegneria dell'Informazione at the University of Pisa. She received the "Laurea" degree in Mathematics (1998) and a Doctoral degree in Robotics and Industrial Automation (2002). She has been Visiting Scholar at M.I.T. (2000-2001) in the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (LIDS ). She has been Visiting Researcher at UCLA, (2004) in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department (MAE ). She is Deputy Director of Centro di Ricerca "E. Piaggio", responsible of the CrossLab in Advanced Manufacturing, Co-founder of Proxima robotics srl, Spin-off of the University of Pisa; She has also been Chair of the IEEE Robotics & Automation Society Italian Chapter (I-RAS) and Associate Editor of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters and of the IEEE Transaction on Robotics. She currently is Senior Editor of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters and Principal Investigator of the ILIAD European project. Her main research interests within Robotics are in motion planning and control of robots and of multiple nonholonomic vehicles, optimal control of constrained systems, coordination of multi–robot vehicles, distributed algorithm for multi-vehicles management.

Matteo Bianchi (Organizer)

Matteo Bianchi received the B.S degree cum laude and the M.S cum laude in Biomedical Engineering from the Università di Pisa, Italy, in 2004 and 2007, respectively and the PhD in Automatics, Robotics and Bioengineering from the Università di Pisa in 2012. Currently, he is an Assistant Professor of Automatic Control at the Research Centre “E. Piaggio” and the Department of Information Engineering (DII) of the Università di Pisa. From January to June 2011, he worked as visiting student at the Laboratory for Computational Sensing and Robotics at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. His research interests include robotics and haptic interface design and control for advanced Human-Machine Interaction (HMI). He is an author of more than 100 contributions to international conferences and journals and serves as member of the editorial/organizing board of international conferences and journals. He is editor of the book "Human and Robot Hands'', Springer International Publishing. He is recipient of several national and international awards, including the JCTF novel technology paper award at the IEEE/RSJ IROS Conference in Villamoura, Portugal (2012) and the Best Paper Award at the IEEE-RAS Haptics Symposium in Philadelphia, USA (2016). He serves as co-Chair of the IEEE RAS Technical Committee (TC) on Robotic Hands, Grasping and Manipulation and Vice Chair for Information Dissemination for the IEEE RAS TC on Haptics. He acts as PI for UNIPI of EU grants and research contracts with companies in the field of HMI.

Category Talk · Type Talk