CECS welcomes speakers from a variety of engineering and computer science backgrounds to participate in on-campus seminars and workshops.

Seminars are held regularly during the Fall and Winter semesters from 11:30am-12:30pm in 1410/1420 PEC followed by a light lunch. Students, faculty, staff, and guests are welcome to attend. 

CECS Distinguished Speaker Series: Dr. Ming C. Lin

"Reconstructing Reality: From Physical World to Virtual Environments" 

April 7, 2017, 11:30am-12:30pm

1410/1420 PEC

Register To Attend

With increasing availability of data in various forms from images, audio, video, 3D models, motion capture, simulation results, to satellite imagery, representative samples of the various phenomena constituting the world around us bring new opportunities and research challenges. Such availability of data has led to recent advances in data-driven modeling. However, most of the existing example-based synthesis methods offer empirical models and data reconstruction that may not provide an insightful understanding of the underlying process or may be limited to a subset of observations.

In this talk, I present recent advances that integrate classical model-based methods and statistical learning techniques to tackle challenging problems that have not been previously addressed. These include flow reconstruction for traffic visualization, learning heterogeneous crowd behaviors from video, simultaneous estimation of deformation and elasticity parameters from images and video, and example-based multimodal display for VR systems. These approaches offer new insights for understanding complex collective behaviors, developing better models for complex dynamical systems from captured data, delivering more effective medical diagnosis and treatment, as well as cyber-manufacturing of customized apparel. I conclude by discussing some possible future directions and challenges.

About the Speaker: Ming C. Lin is currently John R. & Louise S. Parker Distinguished Professor of Computer Science at the University of North Carolina (UNC), Chapel Hill. She was also an honorary Chair Professor (Yangtze Scholar) at Tsinghua University in China from 2013-2015. She obtained her B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley. She received several honors and awards, including the NSF Young Faculty Career Award in 1995, Honda Research Initiation Award in 1997, UNC/IBM Junior Faculty Development Award in 1999, UNC Hettleman Award for Scholarly Achievements in 2003, Beverly W. Long Distinguished Professorship 2007-2010, Carolina Women’s Center Faculty Scholar in 2008, UNC WOWS Scholar 2009-2011, IEEE VGTC Virtual Reality Technical Achievement Award in 2010, and several best paper awards at international conferences. She is a Fellow of ACM and IEEE.

Her research interests include physically-based modeling, virtual environments, sound rendering, haptics, robotics, and geometric computing. She has (co-)authored more than 250 refereed publications in these areas and co edited/authored four books. She has served on hundreds of program committees of leading conferences and co chaired dozens of international conferences and workshops. She is currently a member of IEEE Computer Society (CS) Board of Governors, a member of Computing Research Association-Women (CRA-W) Board of Directors, the Chair of 2015 IEEE CS Transactions Operations Committee and a member of 2015 Executive Committee of IEEE CS Publications Board. She is a former Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (2011-2014) and a member of several editorial boards. She also has served on several steering committees and advisory boards of international conferences, as well as government and industrial technical advisory committees.

CECS Research Seminar Series: Dr. Rajesh Rajamani

"Novel Sensors, New Estimation Algorithms and Active Controls: Technologies for Improving Highway Vehicle Safety and Mobility" 

April 14, 2017, 11:30am-12:30pm

1410/1420 PEC

Register To Attend

A number of exciting vehicle automation and active safety systems are being developed by research groups around the world.  This talk focuses on novel sensors, estimation algorithms and control systems that can fill critical gaps in the automation technologies under development.  The first part of this seminar describes interesting sensing and estimation solutions that can significantly improve the effectiveness of active safety systems.  The solutions discussed here include piezoelectric tire deformation sensors, observers for parameter varying nonlinear systems, unknown disturbance observers for predicting and preventing tripped rollovers, and magnetic sensors for detection of imminent unavoidable crashes.  The second part of the seminar describes the development of a new class of narrow commuter vehicles designed to address traffic congestion, improve highway mobility and provide very high fuel economy.  Results from a prototype narrow vehicle with stability-enhancing automatic tilt control developed at the University of Minnesota are presented.  The final part of the seminar describes the development of a smart bicycle with instrumentation that can track trajectories of nearby vehicles on the road and provide warnings to the motorist, if a potential car-bicycle collision is detected.  Significant challenges from sensor cost and size constraints for a bicycle, and from the need to track highly complex collision scenarios are discussed.  Experimental results and videos of the smart bicycle system’s performance are presented.

About the Speaker: Rajesh Rajamani obtained his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of California at Berkeley in 1991 and 1993 respectively and his B.Tech degree from the Indian Institute of Technology at Madras in 1989.   He is currently Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Minnesota.  His active research interests include sensing and estimation for autonomous vehicles and other smart systems. 

Dr. Rajamani has co-authored over 120 journal papers and is a co-inventor on 13 patent applications.  He is the author of the popular book “Vehicle Dynamics and Control” published by Springer Verlag.  Dr. Rajamani is a Fellow of ASME and has been a recipient of the CAREER award from the National Science Foundation, the 2001 Outstanding Paper award from the journal IEEE Transactions on Control Systems Technology, the Ralph Teetor Award from SAE, and the 2007 O. Hugo Schuck Award from the American Automatic Control Council. 

Several inventions from his laboratory have been commercialized through start-up ventures co-founded by industry executives.  One of these companies, Innotronics, was recently recognized among the 35 Best University Start-Ups of 2016 in a competition conducted by the US National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer.