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Towards Robots that Move and Interact Like Humans

Dr. Katsu Yamane
Carnegie Mellon University

April 23, 2009
Troy 2012, 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Refreshments at 3:30 p.m.


In this talk, I will introduce some of my work in humanoid control and human motion analysis. The goal is to understand human motion control skills and apply them to humanoid robots to realize realistic behaviors and interactions with the environment and human. The first half of the talk deals with synthesizing robot and virtual character motions from human motion data. I will show several techniques for adapting captured human motion to robots and environments that are substantially different from the original. The fundamental idea is to effectively combine data with dynamics, kinematics and planning algorithms to synthesize a variety of new motions from relatively few datasets. The second half is devoted to our quest towards more thorough understanding of human motion control through analysis and simulation using a detailed neuro-musculo-skeletal model with a somatosensory reflex network. We demonstrate that the parameters identified from motion capture data are consistent with some of the phenomena known in biomechanics such as patellar tendon reflex.


Katsu Yamane joined Disney Research, Pittsburgh as a Senior Research Scientist in October 2008. His research interests are in humanoid robot control, human motion analysis and simulation, and character animation synthesis. He received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from University of Tokyo in 1997, 1999 and 2002 respectively. Before moving to Disney, he was a faculty member at the University of Tokyo and a postdoctoral fellow at Carnegie Mellon University. He is a recipient of Best Transactions Paper Award (2000) and Early Academic Career Award (2004) of IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, and Young Scientist Award (2005) of Ministry of Education, Japan.

Hosted by: Dr. Jeff Trinkle (x2510)

Last updated: Feb. 27, 2009