Master's degree project at PAL Robotics

Dear Orocos users,

There is an opening for a Master's degree project at PAL Robotics, that is
expected to use the Orocos ecosystem. Details can be found here:
Opening "Master's Thesis Motion Planner


Adolfo Rodríguez Tsouroukdissian
Freek Stulp

---------- Text-only description of opening follows ----------

Master's Thesis Motion Planner Evaluation

Project Description:

In the near future, robotic products and services will become an integral
part of our daily life. One key capability of such robots is that they must
be able to generate motion plans for a wide variety of tasks and human
environments. To plan goal-directed motions on a robot, two contrasting
strategies are:
- Plan each task from scratch using search.
- Replay a stored motion plan from memory.

Both approaches are well-known research topics in robotics, and each has
distinct advantages and disadvantages. Formulating motion planning as search
makes it very generally applicable, but leads to a high computational cost
and robustness issues. Using pre-stored plans, or motion primitives, is more
computationally efficient and enables learning, but only those tasks for
which motion primitives are stored can be solved. The goal of this project
is to implement the two methods on a humanoid service robot, and compare the
practical impact of their advantages and disadvantages on the execution of
everyday tasks.

This project will consist of the following tasks:
- Adapting and extending existing open-source libraries that implement
sampling-based motion planning and motion primitives approaches.
Integrating these methods in the Robot Operating System (ROS)
- Applying these methods to the humanoid service robot REEM.
- Evaluating sampling-based motion planning and motion primitives on REEM,
in the context of real-world tasks. Assess under which circumstances one
approach outperforms the other.

In this project you will be introduced to the state-of-the-art in robotic
hardware and software, as used in leading robotics companies. On the other
hand, we expect the scientific value of the topic to lead to a conference or
journal publication. Therefore, the project is suited for students who
intend to pursue a career in both industry or academia.

Project Conditions:
- Location: PAL Robotics headquarters in Barcelona, Spain
- Start date: From September 2011
- Supervisors:
Adolfo Rodríguez Tsouroukdissian (adolfo [dot] rodriguez [..] ...)
Freek Stulp (stulp [..] ...)

Applicant Requirements:
- Pursuing a M.Sc. title in robotics, computer science or a related field.
- Practical experience in C/C++.
- Proficiency in English in communication and writing.
- European Union citizen or resident.

Contact details:
If you're interested, please submit your resume to: recruit [..] ....
Please specify the job code and job name in the subject of the email.