Wed, 11/04/2015 - 14:30
Karl Kruusamäe (left) and Meredith Pitsch (right) headshots.

Two new graduate students have joined our team over the last six months to continue work on robotics for hazardous environments. Meredith Pitsch (right) joined NRG in the summer of 2015, and is researching mobile navigation and system integration for Johnson, our autonomous radiation mapping robot. Karl Kruusamäe (left) is a postdoctoral researcher originally from Estonia, who is joining us for a year to continue our lab's research in novel user interfaces for remote manipulation.

Welcome, Karl and Meredith! We are excited to see the results of your research efforts.

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 08:45
photograph of Matt Horn, Alex von Sternberg, and Adam Allevato

With the start 2014-2015 school year comes three new graduate research assistants in the lab: Matt Horn, Alex von Sternberg, and Adam Allevato. Our new researchers will work on expanding and integrating capabilities developed here at the lab, including teleoperation, mobile manipulation, and visual object recognition. We're excited to have them on board! For more details, please see the members page.

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 08:30
a robotic arm

Alcalde, the office magazine of the Texas Exes and the Longhorn Network ran features on our robotic efforts at Los Alamos National Labs. If you didn't get to see the feature in the magazine you can view the article on their web site. If you didn't get to see us on the Longhorn Network you can see either of the two spots they ran here and here

Thu, 05/29/2014 - 08:30
wheeled yellow robot

Last month, our newest member a crate.... from Clearpath Robotics. Clearpath Robotics helped us integrate two UR-5 manipulators with their Husky mobile platform, thus creating a unique, industrial grade dual-arm system. The platform included LIDAR, IMU, and vision sensors. We have two Robotiq grippers on hand (ha!) we will be adding soon.

Thu, 01/02/2014 - 08:30

ROS-Industrial is a industry-university consortium managed by Southwest Research Institute. ROS-I is "an open-source project that extends the advanced capabilities of the Robot Operating System (ROS) software to new industrial applications." ROS-I issued the following release on the matter. 


Fri, 11/08/2013 - 08:30
diagram of an experiment showing a robotic arm interacting with a neutron beam

NRG student Joseph Hashem will present a paper titled "Automating X-Ray and Neutron Non-Destructive Testing Applications" at the ANS Winter Meeting in Washington DC which documents the feasibility to use industrial manipulators in a neutron field terms of validating the precision and vibrations of a canidate manipulator. Additionally the proposed test system has been evaluated using MCNP software.  The paper is co-authored with James Hunter  at LANL and Mitch Pryor at U.T. Austin. 

Tue, 10/29/2013 - 08:30

Dr. Pryor was selected to enter the officer track for the Executive Committee of the American Nuclear Society's Robotics & Remote Systems Division. He has served on the executive committee for 3 years and looks forward to the 5 year tenure in the office track. 

logo for the American Nuclear Society

Tue, 10/29/2013 - 08:30
skyline of a city with IDETC/CIE 2013 title

Both Josh Williams and Kyle Schroeder presented papers based on their PhD efforts at the 2013 ASME's DETC conference in Portland, OR. Josh's paper was title "A knowledge-based approach for the automated design of robotic/human manufacturing workcells in hazardous environments," and Kyle's paper was on "A Black Box Model for Estimating Joint Torque in an Industrial Serial Manipulator."

Mon, 10/28/2013 - 08:15
diagram of an experiment showing a robotic arm and an oven in a glovebox

On Tuesday, July 23rd, Josh Williams successfully defended his doctoral disseration, "Automated conceptual design of manufacturing workcells in radioactive environments." Designing automation systems for handling special nuclear materials is incredibly challenging giving the broad range of requirements that must be met. This often leads to design-by-committee which - if successful - rarely leads to designs that best meet performance objectives. Josh developed a Knowledge-Based System (KBS), performance criteria, and methods to generate feasible design solutions for validation.

Mon, 10/28/2013 - 08:15
collage of photos from an experiment showing a robotic apparatus and a banana

On Monday, July 1st, Kyle Schroeder successfully defended his doctoral disseration, "Requirements for effective collision detection on industrial serial manipulators." Kyle developed a 'black box' modeling methodology for industrial manipulators using a dyanamic model and motor current to detect undesired collisions. The high bandwidth of the Agile Planet controller then allowed for the system to respond fast enough to such collisions that force thresholds associated with human injuries were not exceeded.