Robotic Fish: Make “Sense” of the Underwater World


Monday, November 9, 2020 - 3:30pm to 4:30pm


Via Zoom


Xiaobo Tan Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering Michigan State University, East Lansing,

Talk abstract:Bioinspired robotic fish have gained widespread interest due to their natural appeal and promising prospect for underwater sensing. In this talk I will share our robotic fish work, with a focus on gliding robotic fish “GRACE”, which combines maneuverability of robotic fish with energy-efficiency of underwater gliders. I will highlight the roles of dynamics and control in advancing the goal of autonomous sensing, through a series of examples motivated by applications of practical relevance: exploiting spiral dynamics of GRACE to monitor harmful algal blooms, developing distributed filtering algorithms to track movement of invasive fish species, and exploring human-robot collaboration to facilitate underwater search and rescue.    

Bio:Dr. Xiaobo Tan is an MSU Foundation Professor and the Richard M. Hong Endowed Chair in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Michigan State University. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees in automatic control from Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, in 1995, 1998, respectively, and his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Maryland in 2002. His research interests include underwater robotics, soft robotics, smart materials, and control systems. He has published about 300 papers and been awarded four US patents in these areas. 

Dr. Tan is a Fellow of IEEE and ASME. He was a recipient of the NSF CAREER Award (2006), MSU Teacher-Scholar Award (2010), MSU College of Engineering Withrow Distinguished Scholar Award (2018), Distinguished Alumni Award from the ECE Department at University of Maryland (2018), and multiple best paper awards. Dr. Tan is currently a Senior Editor for IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics (TMECH), and has served as an Associate Editor for Automatica, Technical Editor for TMECH, and guest editor for six journals. He has been on the organizing committees for a number of international conferences, including serving as the General Chair for the 2018 ASME Dynamic Systems and Control Conference and the 2023 American Control Conference. Dr. Tan is keen to integrate his research with educational and outreach activities, and has served as Director of an NSF-funded Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) Site program at MSU from 2009 - 2016 and Curator of a robotic fish exhibit at MSU Museum in 2016-2017.  

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