IMI Interdisciplinary Mathematics InstituteCollege of Arts and Sciences

Algorithmic Problems Related to Robotics

  • Feb. 27, 2015
  • 2:30 p.m.
  • LeConte 312


The last few years, robots have moved from the pages of science fiction books into our everyday reality. Currently, robots are used in scientific exploration, manufacturing, entertainment, and household maintenance. While the above advances were made possible by recent improvements in sensors, actuators, and computing elements, the research of today is focused on the computational aspects of robotics. This talk presents an overview of algorithmic problems related to robotics, with the particular focus on increasing the autonomy of robotic systems in challenging environments. In particular I would discuss the use of discrete structures such as graphs to efficiently solve robotic problems. Cooperative Localization Mapping and Exploration employs teams of robots in order to construct accurate representations of the environment and of the robots' pose. The problem of coverage has found applications ranging from vacuum cleaning to humanitarian mine removal. A family of algorithms will be presented that solve the coverage problem efficiently in terms of distance travelled. Finally, I will present some current work on the problem of searching under uncertainty. The work that I will present has a strong algorithmic flavour, while it is validated in real hardware.

Ioannis Rekleitis is currently an Assistant Professor at the Computer Science and Engineering Department at the College of Engineering and Computing, University of South Carolina. Previously he was an Adjunct Professor at the School of Computer Science, McGill University. Between 2004 and 2007 he was a visiting fellow at the Canadian Space Agency. During 2004 he was at McGill University as a Research Associate in the Centre for Intelligent Machines with Professor Gregory Dudek in the Mobile Robotics Lab (MRL). Between 2002 and 2003, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Carnegie Mellon University in the Sensor Based Planning Lab with Professor Howie Choset. He was granted his Ph.D. from the School of Computer Science, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada in 2002 under the supervision of Professors Gregory Dudek and Evangelos Milios. Thesis title: "Cooperative Localization and Multi-Robot Exploration". His Research has focused on mobile robotics and in particular in the area of cooperating intelligent agents with application to multi-robot cooperative localization, mapping, exploration and coverage. His interests extend to computer vision and sensor networks. He has worked with underwater, terrestrial, aerial, and space robots. Ioannis Rekleitis has published more than sixty journal and conference papers. His work can be found online at:

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