IRIM Spring Seminar | Towards Human-Friendly Robots: We need more Robots at Home

Abstract: The demand for robots that can work in close proximity and interact physically with humans has been increasing. Currently, there are robots in airports, restaurants, and amusement parks that guide, serve, and entertain people. However, despite technological advancements, there are still very few robotic applications that meet the public's expectations. To make robots more helpful in our daily lives, we need a better understanding of human environments and tasks, better methods for robots to perform tasks, and better designs for robots to interact with humans naturally and safely. In this presentation, I will share my experience and work on designing human-friendly robots through robot design, motion control, and human-robot interaction. Additionally, I will introduce KIMLAB’s recent approach to designing and implementing robots for home use.

Bio: Joohyung Kim is currently an Associate Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and the director of KIMLAB (Kinetic Intelligent Machine LAB) at University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His research focuses on design and control for humanoid robots, system for motion learning in robot hardware, and safe human-robot interaction. He received BSE and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) from Seoul National University, Korea, in 2001 and 2012. He was with Disney Research as a Research Scientist from 2013 to 2019. Prior to joining Disney, he was a postdoctoral fellow in the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University for DARPA Robotics Challenge in 2013. From 2009 to 2012, he was a Research Staff Member in Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, Korea, developing biped walking controllers for humanoid robots.