Active Sensing and Safe Stabilizing Control for ODE and PDE Systems

Lecture / Panel
For NYU Community



Shumon Koga
University of California, San Diego


"Active Sensing and Safe Stabilizing Control for ODE and PDE Systems"


This talk will discuss control techniques for ODE and PDE systems with applications to robotics and energy systems. The first part of the talk will focus on active sensing, a problem in which sensor data collection needs to be controlled to maximize sensing performance. Planning the sensing trajectory of a mobile robot to explore and map an unknown environment is an example application in robotics. I will present an open-loop planning method for active mapping, a closed-loop control policy for active Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM), and a model-free reinforcement learning for active object localization, all of which are developed over continuous control space under a limited field of view in sensing. The second part of the talk will consider control synthesis for ODE and PDE systems with stability and safety guarantees. Quadratic programming with control Lyapunov function (CLF) and control barrier function (CBF) constraints has become a widely adopted technique for enforcing stability and safety constraints. However, CLF-CBF-QP methods introduce undesired equilibria on the boundary of the safe set. I propose a new formulation based on a differential complementarity problem to design controllers which avoid many of the undesired equilibria introduced by the CLF-CBF-QP approach. Finally, I will discuss control and estimation techniques for PDE models of thermal and electrical energy storage systems that exhibit phase change, known as the Stefan Problem. I propose a novel infinite-dimensional backstepping control approach to exactly store the desired amount of energy, which achieves provable stability, robustness, and safety.


Shumon Koga is a Postdoctoral Scholar in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of California, San Diego. He works with Professor Nikolay Atanasov in the Existential Robotics Laboratory. He received the Ph.D. degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from the University of California, San Diego in 2020, under the supervision of Professor Miroslav Krstic. He was an intern at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories. He received the Robert E. Skelton Systems and Control Dissertation Award in 2020, the O. Hugo Schuck Best Paper Award in 2019, and the Outstanding Graduate Student Award in 2018.