Newsletter June 2022

Message from the DISC Office

Dear all,

Welcome to the June newsletter.

At the moment the IFAC WC 2029 core team is busy with preparing the presentation for the IFAC Courcil meeting on July 13th in London.

We are currently working on the course program 2022-2023, we will give you an update in the next newsletter!

With best regards,

Henk Nijmeijer,
scientific director

Renate Kragtwijk,
DISC secretariat


DISC Summer School – Security and Resiliency for Cyber-Physical Systems – foundations and recent advances

From 27 -30 June the DISC Summer School took place at NH Leeuwenhorst in Noordwijkerhout.  There were 44 participants in total.

Peyman Mohajerin Esfahani (TUD) receives prestigious European Control Award

Peyman Mohajerin Esfahani, an associate professor at the Delft Center for Systems and Control, receives the 2022 European Control Award (ECA).
The ECA is a prestigious award to recognize outstanding contributions by a young researcher under the age of 40 in the area of systems and control. The award is sponsored by the European Control Association, and is presented during the annual European Control Conference (ECC).
The awardee is also invited to give a plenary lecture during the ECC, 12-15 July 2022.

Maurice Heemels (TU Eindhoven) received an ERC Advanced Grant

Maurice Heemels (TU/e) received an ERC Advanced Grant for his proposal PROACTHIS “Projection-based Control: A Novel Paradigm for High-performance Systems”.

This grant will offer him the opportunity to work on completely new hybrid control technologies to push the performance of future high-tech applications to extreme levels!

If you are interested in working on this ERC project as a postdoctoral or PhD researcher and have a strong background in mathematical system theory, particularly non-smooth systems, hybrid control, maximal monotonicity, and/or control design, then you can contact Maurice Heemels via :

The complete press release can be found here.

New Systems and Control master in Groningen

Starting in 2023 the University of Groningen will be offering a new master programme “Systems and Control”. With a focus on complex systems and networks it will complement the already existing Dutch Systems and Control master programmes in Delft, Eindhoven and Twente.

The two main goals of the new master is to provide excellent master students to the job market in the Netherlands and to attract more excellent international students. The programme coordinator will be Prof. Dr. Stephan Trenn ( who can be contacted for further information.

REMARO SUMMER SCHOOL on Control, System and Software Architecture for Autonomous Underwater Robots

Carlos Hernandez Corbato and Laura Ferranti organised a summer school in Delft on “Control, System and Software Architecture for Autonomous Underwater Robots”

The summer school took place in Delft on the 27 and 28 of June.

More details can be found here.


New people

Eindhoven University of Technology

Name: Ilja van Oort
Starting date: 6/6/2022
Function: PhD
Group: Control Systems group
Supervisor: Maarten Schoukens , Roland Toth
Project: Data-driven modeling of cellular system dynamics

I recently graduated in Biomedical Engineering at TU/e, where I developed a particular interest in computational modeling, machine learning and numerical optimization. Intrigued by the potential of data-driven methods for dynamical modeling, I completed my master thesis on a (non-linear) system identification method for blood glucose modeling. I am excited to continue down this path in my PhD and gain a deeper understanding of system identification & control. In my research, I will focus on identifying the system dynamics of aortic smooth muscle cells on multiple (spatial/temporal) scales.

Delft University of Technology

Name: Manuel Boldrer
Starting date: 16-05-2022
Function: Postdoc
Group: CoR
Supervisor: Laura Ferranti.

Manuel Boldrer received the master’s degree in Mechatronic Engineering from the University of Trento, Trento, Italy, in 2018. He is going to defend in June his PhD in Materials, Mechatronics and Systems Engineering at the University of Trento.

He was a Visiting Scholar at the University of California, Riverside, Riverside, US, in 2021. As of today He is a postdoctoral researcher with the Cognitive Robotics Department (CoR), Delft University of Technology, Delft, Netherlands, under the supervision of Laura Ferranti.

His research interests include mobile robotics and distributed coordination of multi-agent systems, and recently he is getting interested in secure and private robots control.

He enjoys traveling and doing activities with friends (at an amateur level) such as surfing, playing basketball, soccer and tennis.

Name: Stefano Dalla Gasperina
Starting date: 01-06-2022
Function: Postdoc
Group: 3ME-CoR
Supervisor: Prof. Laura Marchal-Crespo

My name is Stefano Dalla Gasperina, and I am a biomedical roboticist and engineer. I’ve just started at CoR as a postdoctoral researcher at the MLN Lab, headed by Prof. Laura Marchal-Crespo. Last year, I took my Ph.D. in biomedical engineering at Politecnico di Milano, Italy. My research focused on patient-cooperative control algorithms to integrate Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) on upper-limb rehabilitation robots.

My work now focuses on exploring new research fields integrating high-technology and human factors, aiming to improve the user experience and bridge the gap between people’s needs and available technology. I will be working in the Human-Robot Interaction group, developing novel VR-based control strategies for upper-limb and lower-limb rehabilitation robots.

In my spare time, I enjoy developing DIY domotic projects and drone racing 😉

Finally – since I do come from the alps – I am also in love with winter sports and alpine skiing!

Name: Khaled Mustafa
Starting date: 01-06-2022
Function: PhD
Group: 3ME – CoR
Supervisor:Javier Alonso-Mora

My name is Khaled Mustafa, I am a new Ph.D. researcher in Javier Alonso-Mora’s group. I am writing to introduce myself, and share a little bit about the work I will be doing here. I received my B.Sc. degree in mechatronics from the German University in Cairo, Egypt in 2017, and my M.Sc. degree in systems and control from the University of Twente, the Netherlands in 2019. The focus of my thesis was on developing learning-based algorithms for mobile robot navigation in unknown environments, and state representation learning by leveraging robotics priors. After gaining some R&D experience from the industry, by working on developing motion planning algorithms for SAE L4 autonomous driving at Volkswagen group in Berlin, I am eager to get back to academia to pursue my Ph.D. endeavor.

I will be joining Javier’s group where the focus of my research is to generate risk-aware trajectories that guarantee the safety of self-driving cars/robots under uncertainty using learning and optimization-based approaches.

While not developing algorithms, I enjoy running, hiking, and reading.

Groningen University

Name: Xinghua Liu
Function: PhD
Group: Discrete Technology and Production Automation(DTPA)
Start date: 01-05-2022
Supervisor: Ming Cao
Project: Multi-robot optimization and learning-based control

Name: Huayuan Huang
Starting date: 01-07-2022
Function: PhD
Group: Robotics Laboratory & Systems, Control and Optimization group

Supervisors: Prof. Rafaella Carloni; Dr. Henk van Waarde; Prof. Kanat Camlibel
Project: Data-driven control of compliant robots

My name is Huayuan Huang. I have received my BSc and MSc in Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics and University of Science and Technology of China respectively. My previous research during my master’s degree was mainly about the tracking control of flexible joint manipulator. Now my research direction lies in data-driven control of compliant robots. When I am not working, I usually spend time swimming and playing video games. I also like to travel with my friends and taste the delicious food from different places.


PhD defences

Candidate: Amin Sharifi Kolarijani
Group: TUD – 3ME –  DCSC
Thesis: Finite-Dimensional Approximation in Dual Domain with Applications in Opinion Dynamics and Dynamic Programming
Promotores: T. Keviczky and Dr. P. Mohajerin Esfahani
Date: 20-06-2022
Location:  Senaatszaal, Aula
Time:  15:00

Candidate: Yashar Zeinaly
Group: TUD – 3ME –  DCSC
Thesis: Model-based Control of Large-scale Baggage Handling Systems: Leveraging the Theory of Linear Positive Systems for Robust Scalable Control Design      “
Promotores: B. De Schutter and J. Hellendoorn
Date: 24-06-2022
Location: Senaatszaal, Aula
Time: 15:00

Candidate: Giannis Delimpaltadakis
Group: TUD – 3ME –  DCSC
Thesis: Grasping the Sampling Behaviour of Event-Triggered Control: Self-Triggered Control, Abstractions and Formal Analysis
Promotores: M. Mazo and Dr. P. Mohajerin Esfahani
Date: 28-06-2022
Location: Senaatszaal, Aula
Time: 10:00

Candidate: Gabriel de Albuquerque Gleizer
Group: TUD – 3ME –  DCSC
Thesis:Timing is everything: Analysis and synthesis of traffic patterns in event-triggered control
Promotores: M. Mazo and B. De Schutter
Date: 29-06-2022
Location: Senaatszaal, Aula
Time: 17:30

Candidate: C.J.J. Beckers
Group:Dynamics & Control
Thesis: “Energy Consumption Prediction for Electric City Buses: Using Physics-Based Principles”
Promotores:  Prof.dr. H. Nijmeijer & I.J.M. Besselink
Date: 28-06-2022
Location: TU/e, Atlas room 0.710
Time: 16:00


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The next issue of this Newsletter will appear in July 2022.

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