New ICON team keeps steady pace, hosting seminars and panels featuring national leaders
Since launching in September 2020, the Center for Innovation in Control, Optimization and Networks (ICON) hasn’t let the COVID-19 pandemic hamper its goals.
Affiliated with the broader Purdue Engineering Initiative (PEI) on Autonomous and Connected Systems (ACS), ICON is led by Co-directors Shaoshuai Mou, assistant professor of astronautical and aeronautical engineering, and Shreyas Sundaram, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering.
The mission of ICON is to integrate diverse expertise across control, optimization and networks to create innovative solutions to grand challenges. Specifically, the center aims to:
- Establish foundational knowledge and develop advanced techniques for controlling and optimizing complex autonomous systems.
- Offer customizable curricula and leverage diverse delivery approaches to meet emerging educational needs.
- Strengthen partnerships with industry, governmental agencies and national labs to tackle national and global priorities.
ICON’s broad research themes include: multi-agent and networked systems; resilient and secure autonomy; human/autonomy interaction; data science, machine learning and AI for autonomy and control; control and optimization of infrastructure systems; and validation and verification of autonomous and connected systems.
Since its inception, ICON has hosted five Distinguished Seminars, all featuring National Academy of Engineering (NAE) members. These events introduced new and emerging research ideas to ICON faculty and students, and in turn, introduced the distinguished speakers to the world-class research environment found at Purdue. Each speaker delivered a 45-minute talk, followed by a 15-minute Q&A session, and concluded with a 45-minute meeting with undergraduate and graduate students, postdocs and junior faculty.
ICON also has hosted four panels with representation from agencies such as DARPA, the U.S. Army Research Lab, Northrop Grumman, John Deere and other universities.
ICON faculty also have supervised large undergraduate teams for the development of a cutting-edge swarm simulator and robotic platforms. A group of students recently received a prize from the U.S. Naval Research Lab for a competition “AI Tracks at Sea Challenge.”
In addition, the team has begun collecting materials documenting Purdue’s long history of contributions to automatic control, with a portion of the ICON web page dedicated to showcasing these contributions.
The ICON team consists of 54 College of Engineering faculty members encompassing nine labs as well as the Purdue UAS Test Facility. Going forward, the ICON team’s goal is to enhance Purdue’s leading role in frontier research topics, and intensify collaboration with industry, funding agencies, and national labs, thereby enabling ICON researchers to address grand challenges facing our world.