ROBOTICS RESEARCH SEMINAR 21/7/17: “Evolutionary Robotics at CSIRO – A hexacopter learning to fly”

WHAT: Robotics Research Seminar
WHERE: JUN0003, Lecture Theatre (Junxion Building), Brayford Pool Campus
WHEN: Friday 21st July 2017, 11:00 – 12:00 am
WHO: Dr Gerard David Howard
TITLE: Evolutionary Robotics at CSIRO – A hexacopter learning to fly


Harnessing the creative power of evolution to design the bodies and brains of robots
has been a longstanding goal in the field of Evolutionary Robotics. This seminar will
provide a crash course in the fundamental concepts, and explore two main research
thrusts. I will start by introducing CSIRO’s work in field robotics, then I’ll show how
evolution can be used to automatically develop mission- and platform-specific
controllers for real hexapod robots and multirotor UAVs.


David spent around 4 years at the University of Leeds, UK where he earned a BSc in
Computing (2005) and an MSc in Cognitive Systems (2006). He received his PhD in
Neuroevolutionary Reinforcement Learning from the University of the West of England,
UK (2010), and a postdoctoral position at the same institution that used evolutionary
algorithms to design hardware spiking neural networks based on memristors (2013). He
moved to CSIRO for a second postdoc in Evolutionary Aerial Robotics (2016), and is
presently employed there as a Research Scientist in Evolutionary Field Robotics. He
currently leads the Autonomous Design testbed, a part of CSIRO’s Future Science
Platform initiative, as well as lecturing at the University of Queensland.