IRIM Robotics Seminar—Luis Sentis of the University of Texas at Austin

The Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines presents “Considerations on Productivity, Performance and Ergonomics of Human-Centered Robots” by Luis Sentis of the University of Texas at Austin. The event will be held in the Marcus Nanotechnology Building, Rooms 1116-1118, from 12:15-1:15 p.m. and is open to the public.


Human centered robots provide embodiments whose purpose is to increase human productivity and comfort in complex non-structured environments. On one hand, operating in such environments demands new embodiments that enhance mobility and dexterous manipulation. On the other hand, productivity is an ill-defined term that often ignores key cognitive factors such as mental comfort or perceived workload.

We posit that new embodiments consisting of legged manipulators endowed with high performance control and models of human workload behavior could ultimately result in new areas of enhanced productivity compared to simpler set ups. To make this point we need to demonstrate that teams made out of collaborating humans and human-centered robots will ultimately be more effective than teams with humans alone.

In order to demonstrate these capabilities in an academic setup, my laboratory has spun-out a company to build some of the most advanced yet easy-to-use, human centered robots that exist today. I will delve in robot control theory and models of workload behavior as well as showcase videos of our new adult-size bipedal robots and full-body iron-man-like suit for heavy-duty logistic operations to emphasize our commitment towards experimental long-term studies.


Luis Sentis is the General Dynamics Associate Professor in Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at the University of Texas at Austin. He is also co-founder of the robotics company Apptronik Systems. He received a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University and was a La Caixa Foundation Fellow.

Sentis leads the Human Centered Robotics Laboratory, an experimental facility focusing on control, embodiment, and intelligence of humanoid robots as well as strength augmentation exoskeletons. He publishes and teaches in areas related to realtime decision and control of human-centered robots, hardware design of high performance humanoid robots, and safety capabilities for mobile humanoid robots.

He was awarded the NASA Elite Team Award for his contributions to NASA’s Johnson Space Center Software Robotics and Simulation Division and has been a speaker in popular events such as SXSW and the NASA Thoughts Leader seminar series.

Event Details


  • Wednesday, August 28, 2019
    12:15 pm - 1:15 pm
Location: Marcus Nanotechnology Building, Rooms 1116-1118

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Josie Giles
IRIM Marketing Communications Manager