Grad student recognized with top paper at major robotics conference


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Yanran Ding
Yanran Ding
Yanran Ding, a master’s degree candidate in mechanical engineering, was named a Best Student Paper Award Finalist at the 2017 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) in Vancouver, Canada.

The conference publication from Ding and his advisor, Assistant Professor Hae-Won Park, “Design and Experimental Implementation of a Quasi-Direct-Drive Leg for Optimized Jumping,” was one of just four researchers to receive the honor.

The IROS conference, one of the major international conferences in robotics and intelligent systems, is co-sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Robotics and Automation Society (RAS), the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IES), the Robotics Society of Japan (RSJ), the Society of Instruments and Control Engineers (SICE), and the New Technology Foundation (NTF).

The annual conference brings together an international community of researchers, educators and practitioners in the field of intelligent robots and systems.

Ding earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 2015 from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and began his studies at Illinois later that year.

Park and his research group, the Dynamic Robotics Laboratory, work to advance the current state of the art in control and mechanical design to achieve highly efficient, extremely agile, and ultra-robust dynamic behaviors in dynamic robot systems. His vision of the next generation of dynamic robots is that they will be able to navigate in unstructured, remote, unsafe environments for disaster response and search and rescue operations.

They utilize a combination of modeling, simulation, and control techniques of dynamic robot systems, as well as insights from the observation of biological systems, model-based control design technique, and experimental implementation on real hardware platforms to enable highly dynamic and efficient performance.

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This story was published December 12, 2017.