Self-Driving Vehicles: The Challenges and Opportunities Ahead

Raj Rajkumar

Self-driving vehicles seem to have become quite the rage in popular culture over the past 3 years or so. Jumpstarted by the DARPA Grand Challenges, the promise of self-driving vehicles does have the potential to revolutionize modern transportation. This talk will provide some insights on many basic questions that, however, still remain unanswered. What are the technological barriers? What can or cannot be sensed? Can vehicles recognize and comprehend as good as (or better than) humans? What role does connectivity play (if any)? Will the technology be affordable for the masses? How do issues like liability, insurance, regulations and societal acceptance impact deployment? The talk will be based on road experiences interspersed with some speculation.


Prof. Raj Rajkumar is the George Westinghouse Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering and Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. At Carnegie Mellon, he directs National University Transportation Center on Safety, which is sponsored by the US Department of Transportation. He also direct the Real-Time and Multimedia Systems Laboratory (RTML), and co-directs the General Motors-Carnegie Mellon Connected and Autonomous Driving Collaborative Research Laboratory (CAD-CRL). Raj has served as the Program Chair and General Chair of six international ACM/IEEE conferences on real-time systems, wireless sensor networks, cyber-physical systems and multimedia computing/networking. He has authored one book, edited another book, holds three US patents, and has more than 150 publications in peer-reviewed forums. Eight of these publications have received Best Paper Awards. He has given several keynotes and distinguished lectures at several conferences and universities. He is an IEEE Fellow, and an ACM Distinguished Engineer. He has been given an Outstanding Technical Achievement and Leadership Award by the IEEE Technical Committee on Real-Time Systems. Prof Rajkumar’s work has influenced many commercial operating systems. He was also the primary founder of Ottomatika Inc., a company that focused on delivering the core software intelligence for self-driving vehicles. Ottomatika was recently acquired by Delphi. His research interests include all aspects of cyber-physical systems

From Sensors to Smarter Solutions with Physical Analytics

Hendrik F.Hamann

While in the past most information on the internet was generated by humans or computers, with the emergence of the Internet of Things, vast amount of data is now being created by sensors from devices, machines etc, which are placed in the physical world. Here we present a series of example applications enabled by such sensor data and what we call “Physical Analytics”, which provides the underlying intelligence using a combination of physical and statistical models. The smarter solutions, which are being presented in this talk, range from active energy management and optimization, environmental sensing and controls, precision agriculture to renewable energy forecasting. All these different applications have been built using a single platform, which is comprised of a set of “configurable” technologies components including ultra-low power sensing and communication, big data management technologies, numerical modeling for physical systems, machine learning based physical model blending, and physical analytics based automation and control.


Dr. Hendrik F. Hamann is a Research Manager in the Physical Sciences Department at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY. He received his PhD from the University of Goettingen in Germany. In 1995 he joined JILA (Joint institute between the University of Colorado and NIST) as a Research Associate in Boulder, Colorado. During his tenure at JILA he developed novel near-field optical microscopes to study single molecules at high spatial resolution. Since 2001 he is leading the Physical Analytics program in IBM Research, first as a Research Staff Member and currently as a Research Manager. Between 2005 and 2009 he worked on energy management all the way from the device level to large scale computing systems. His current research interest includes sensor networks, sensor-based physical modeling, renewable energy, precision agriculture, energy management and system physics. He has authored and co-authored more than 80 peer-reviewed scientific papers and holds over 90 patents and has over 70 pending patent applications. Dr. Hamann is an IBM Master Inventor and has served on governmental committees such as the National Academy of Sciences and as an industrial advisor to Universities. He is a member of the American Physical Society (APS), Optical Society of America (OSA), The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the NY Academy of Sciences.