Control Systems and AI in the Quest for Autonomy

Dr. Panos J. Antsaklis
H. C. & E. A. Brosey Professor
University of Notre Dame

Autonomous systems have captured the public’s imagination and have attracted huge research interest in the scientific community. At the same time, when people consider autonomous systems, they often mean different things. In this talk a more precise notion of autonomy together with metrics that are useful when comparing autonomy levels will be introduced and a functional hierarchical architecture for the control of autonomous systems will be discussed, together with the roles of control systems, intelligent systems and AI in autonomy.  Autonomous systems may be considered as complex Cyber-Physical Systems. A powerful methodology for the design of autonomous Cyber-Physical Systems that involves energy like concepts of Passivity and Dissipativity will be discussed. 

Biography: Panos Antsaklis is the H. C. & E. A. Brosey Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Notre Dame. He is a graduate of the National Technical University of Athens, Greece, and holds MS and PhD degrees from Brown University. His research addresses problems of control and automation and examines ways to design control systems that will exhibit high degrees of autonomy. His current research focuses on Cyber-Physical Systems and the interdisciplinary research area of control, computing and communication networks, and on hybrid and discrete event dynamical system.

In addition to publications in journals, conference proceedings, book chapters and encyclopedias, he has co-authored two graduate textbooks on Linear Systems, three research monographs – one on model-based control of networked systems and two on supervisory control of discrete event systems and has co-edited six books on Intelligent Autonomous Control, Hybrid Systems and Networked Embedded Control Systems.

He is IEEE, IFAC and AAAS Fellow, the 2006 recipient of the Engineering Alumni Medal of Brown University and holds an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Lorraine in France. He is the Founding President of the Mediterranean Control Association (MCA) and Editor-in-Chief of the journal Foundations and Trends in Systems and Control. He served as Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Max-Planck-Institute in Magdeburg, Germany for 6 years. He was the President of the IEEE Control Systems Society in 1997 and he served as the Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control for 8 years, 2010-2017.