Model-based Embedded and Robotic Systems Group




Brian Williams
Brian Williams
williams “at” mit “dot” edu

Brian Williams received his S.B., S.M and Ph.D. from MIT in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering in 1989. He pioneered multiple fault, model-based diagnosis in the 80′s through the GDE and Sherlock systems at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, and model-based autonomy in the 90′s through the Livingstone model-based health management and the Burton model-based execution systems. At the NASA Ames Research Center from 1994 to 99 he formed the Autonomous Systems Area, and co-invented the Remote Agent model-based autonomous control system, which received a NASA Space Act Award in 1999. He was a member of the NASA Deep Space One probe flight team, which used remote agent to create the first fully autonomous, self-repairing explorer, demonstrated in flight in 1999.

Research Affiliate

richard camilliRichard Camilli
rcamilli “at” whoi “dot” edu

Richard Camilli is an Associate Scientist with Tenure in the Department of Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI). In 2003 he received his PhD in Environmental Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was the recipient of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers Graduate Paper Award for his work in developing autonomous underwater vehicle technologies. In 2004 he was selected as a WHOI Deep Ocean Exploration Institute Postdoctoral Scholar. His interests include field robotics and payload sensor development for in-situ environmental monitoring and pollution mitigation. He has participated in over thirty oceanographic expeditions throughout the world, and has led numerous offshore oil spill cleanup operations, including several in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Much of his scientific research is focused on developing advanced technologies for observing carbon transport and transformation in the marine subsurface.


Erez KarpasErez Karpas
karpase “at” csail “dot” mit ”dot” edu

Erez Karpas is a postdoctoral associate at MIT CSAIL. In 2012 he received his Ph.D. from the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. In 2005 he received his M.Sc. in computer science, and in 2001 he received his B.Sc. in math and computer science, both from Ben Gurion University. His research interests include autonomous systems, automated planning, heuristic search, machine learning, and artificial intelligence in general.

Graduate Students

David Wang
davidcw “at” mit “dot” edu

David Wang graduated MIT in 2006 with S.B. degrees in Aerospace Engineering with Information Technologies and Electrical Engineering/Computer Science. In 2008 he received his M.S. in Aeronautics/Astronautics with work on Software Engineering and Software Reliability. He is now completing his Ph.D. research on temporal, risk-aware, generative planning.


Eric Timmons
etimmons “at” mit “dot” edu

Eric Timmons graduated from MIT in 2010 with Bachelors degrees in Aerospace Engineering with Information Technologies and Physics. He is currently completing his Masters degree in the AeroAstro Department. Eric is researching fast approximate state estimation for hybrid discrete/continuous systems. Outside of research, Eric’s interests include robotics, UAVs, and teaching.


Peng Yu
yupeng “at” mit “dot” edu

Peng is a second year graduate student in the Aeronautics and Astronautics department at MIT. His research focuses on the collaboration between humans and autonomous systems in planning and execution tasks, especially under unexpected plan failure situations. He received Bachelor of Engineering degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in June 2010.


Pedro Santana
psantana “at” mit “dot” edu

Pedro Santana is B.Sc. in Control and Automation Engineering and M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering, both from the University of Brasília, Brazil. His professional experience includes both hardware and software development for several different kinds of robotic platforms, besides periods of work in the industry. He is currently working towards his Ph.D. at MIT’s Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics (Course 16), where he focuses his research on the topics of planning under uncertainty with active sensing actions and novel stochastic filters for hybrid systems. Pedro loves robots, specially the flying ones, and teaching in general.


Steve Levine
sjlevine “at” mit “dot” edu

Steve Levine is a current M.Eng and soon-to-be Ph.D student in the MERS group. He graduated from MIT in 2011 with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (course 6), with a minor in Mechanical Engineering (course 2). Steve enjoys building and programming robots. His current research is focused on robust robotic task execution, specifically via integrating execution monitoring and generative planning systems. When not in lab, Steve can often be found riding his bicycle or listening to electronic music.


Andrew Wang
wangaj “at” mit “dot” edu


HappyCheng (Simon) Fang
cfang “at” mit “dot” edu

Simon is a M.S. student studying planning under uncertainty. Simon is currently looking at how to make plans with guarantees on the probability of success. He received his bachelor’s degrees from The University of Sydney: B. Sci (Adv Maths) in 2009 and B. Eng (Mechatronics/Space) in 2011.

Outside the lab, Simon is interested in football (soccer), graphic novels (comics), and history (…). His current hobby is sleeping.



Former Members

Shannon Dong
dongs “at” mit “dot” edu

Shannon is a doctoral researcher specializing in robot learning from demonstration. Having completing her BS and MS in the MIT Aero Astro Department in 2005 and 2007, she will be finishing her PhD this summer, after which she will be adding autonomy to next generation robots at the Boeing Company in Seattle. Her interests outside of research include competitive ballroom dancing and non-competitive buffet dining.

Lawrence A. M. Bush
BushL2 “at” csail “dot” mit “dot” edu

Lawrence A. M. Bush holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University at Buffalo. Lawrence has a Master of Science in Computer Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is a Ph.D. Candidate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). Lawrence’s thesis topic is Decision Uncertainty Minimization for Sensing Missions. His areas of expertise are pattern recognition, optimization, active learning and active sensing. His prior employment includes work on expert systems at Cornell University, New York State Agricultural Research Station and work on machine learning at MIT Lincoln Laboratory.


Byungkyu (Joey) Park
bkpark “at” mit “dot” edu

Joey is an undergraduate student planning to major in Computer Science and Mathematics. He has joined the MERS group in summer of 2012 as a UROP and started working on manufacturing the test bed of a humanoid, PR2. His general interest in Robotics led to the MERS group and he is currently enjoying learning through his research from the group.

Outside of lab, Joey loves playing sports, especially soccer. Also, he shoots pistol in the club team.


Ameya Shroff

Hiro Ono

Wesley Graybill

Bobby Effinger

Patrick Conrad

Julie Shah

Hui Li

Cristi Wilcox

Alborz Geramifard

Stephanie Gil

Seung Chung

Lars Blackmore

Paul Elliott

Shen Qu

Tsoline Mikaelian

Andreas Hofmann

Steve Block

Thomas Leaute

John Stedl

Mitch Ingham