IFToMM President 2016-19, ASME fellow, Head of Laboratory of Robotics and Mechatronics
University of Cassino and South Latium, Italy
Biography: Doctor Degree in Engineering from University of Craiova, Romania, as recognizing his academic and
scientific career, and his support to the academic activity. He has also received the 2010 Engineer-Historian
Award of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) for his lifelong involvement in
mechanical engineering, specifically the history of machines and mechanisms. Because of this, he has been
now accepted as corresponding member of the committee for History and Heritage of ASME. From January
2012 he is ASME fellow.
His research interests cover aspects of Mechanisms and Machines Science MMS ( as TMM in the past) and Mechanics of Robots. Specific subjects of his interest are Analysis and Design of Workspace and Manipulation; Mechanical Design of Manipulators, Legged Robots, Grippers, and Hands; Mechanics of Grasp; History of TMM; and Mechanism Design. He is author or co-author of more than six hundreds papers, which have been presented at Conferences or published in national and international journals. He has edited or co-edited 16 books and authored 4 books.
From 1998 to 2004 he has been Chairman of the Permanent Commission for History of Machine and Mechanism Science of IFToMM, the International Federation for the Promotion of Machine and Mechanism Science, and currently he is still a member. Since 2002 he is also member of the IFToMM Technical Committee for Robotics. He has been member of IFToMM TC for Computational Kinematics unitl 2003. Since 2005 he is Chairman of the Commission for Mechatronics of FeIbIM, Federaciòn Iberoamericana de Ingenieria Mecànica. From 2007 to 2009 he has been the Coordinator of the Scientific Committee for RAAD, International Workshops on Robotics in Alpe-Adria-Danube Region. Since 2000 he is Chairman of the Scientific Committee of HMM, IFToMM International Symposium on History of Machines and Mechanisms, that he started in 2000. Since 2002 he is Chairman of the Scientific Committee of MUSME, IFToMM-FeIbIM International Conference on Mechatronics and Multibody Systems, that he started in 2002. Since 2009 he is Chairman of the Scientific Committee of MEDER, IFToMM International Conference on Mechanism Design for Robotics, that he started in 2009. He has been Coordinator of the Commission for Research of GMA, Italian National Group for Mechanics of Machinery for the period 2002-2006. He has been elected Secretary-General of IFToMM for the term 2004-2007. He has been elected President of IFToMM for the term 2008-2011.
Head of BIROMED-Lab (Bio-Inspired RObots for MEDicine-Laboratory)
University of Basel, Switzerland
Università degli Studi di CATANIA, Italy
Giovanni Muscato received the Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Catania, in 1988.
After completing graduation, he was with the Centro di Studi sui Sistemi, Turin, Italy.
In 1990 he won the position of researcher in Automatic Control in the University of Catania. In 1991 he won a “Fulbright” fellowship.
In July-August 1991 he was visiting researcher in the University of New Mexico working on “Robust Control”, In September 1992 he was visiting researcher at the Waseda university (Tokyo) Japan working on “Neural Networks”.
In 1998 he becomes Associate Professor at the University of Catania.
In September 2000 he was visiting professor at the University Picardie Jule Verne, San Quentin (France) working on “Mobile robotics”.
In 2005 he won the position of Full Professor at the University of Catania.
He regularly holds several courses of the Engineering Faculty of the University of Catania in topics regarding Automatic Control, System theory and Robotics. He regularly follows as supervisor Master students (more than two hundred till now) and PhD students (more than ten till now).
The scientific research activity regarded several theoretical and experimental topics mainly concerning automatic control and robotics. From this activity he has published more than 250 articles in congress proceedings and in national and international journals, four books and two patents.
He was local responsible of several national research projects as ROBINSPEC: A robot for industrial inspection, TECSIS PON (2002-2005), PRIN PICTURE (Motion control of innovative locomotion systems and navigation in unstructured environments” (2004-2006), RI4.2 “Innovative methods for the adoption of ICU in robotics” FAR 2 MIUR (2002-2006), “Study design and building of a robot for automatic artichoke harvesting”, funded by Regione Siciliana. As regard European projects he was the coordinator of the project ROBOVOLC (5FP) where a robot for volcanic inspections was designed built and tested. He was also local coordinator of the european projects: CLAWAR 2 (Climbing and Walking Robots), EUROBOT (Robotic educational events to promote a dissemination of science and technology among young people in Europe), RAPOLAC (Rapid Production of Large Aerospace Components), MOW-BY-SAT (Mowing the lawn by satellite), TIRAMISU (Toolbox Implementation for Removal of Anti-personnel Mines, Submunitions and UXO). Moreover he was responsible of several grants with local and national companies for the development of robotic systems.
In 2003 he organised as General Chairman the international conference CLAWAR 2003 and in 2006 the finals of the international robotic competition EUROBOT.
He is in the editorial board of several journals and in the International committee of many robotic conferences. He is expert reviewer of the European Commission of the Italian Ministero dello Sviluppo Economico and of the MIUR.
He is senior member of the IEEE Control & System Society and of the IEEE Robotics & Automation society.
He is in the board of trustees of the CLAWAR Association. He is in the board of directors of the Distretto Tecnologico Sicilia Micro e nano Sistemi and is one of the founder of the Spin-Off Etnamatica S.r.l.
Director, VT Robotics and Mechatronics Laboratory
Core Faculty, Virginia Center for Autonomous Systems (VaCAS)
Virginia Tech, USA
Biography: Dr. Pinhas Ben-Tzvi is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Electrical and Computer Engineering, and the founding Director of the Robotics and Mechatronics Laboratory at Virginia Tech. He received the B.S. degree (Summa Cum Laude) in Mechanical Engineering from the Technion -- Israel Institute of Technology in 2000 and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Toronto, in 2004 and 2008, respectively. Before joining University of Toronto in 2002, he was an R&D engineer at General Electric Medical Systems Company developing medical diagnostic robotic and mechatronic systems. Dr. Ben-Tzvi's current research interests are in robotics & intelligent autonomous systems, human-robot interactions, mechatronics, systems dynamics and control, mechanism design and system integration, and novel sensing and actuation. Examples of research application areas and projects include autonomous mobile robots with symbiosis of locomotion and manipulation and modular & reconfigurable mobile robotics for search & rescue and hazardous environment sensing and monitoring; design of intelligent biomimetic robotic tails for robust dynamic stabilization and agile maneuvering of mobile/legged robots on rough terrain; autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) launch and recovery from naval vessels; haptics devices and upper-extremity exoskeletons for tele-operation and medical diagnostics and therapeutic purposes such as rehabilitation therapy; and novel smart sensors and actuators for biomedical applications. His research program has been supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Office of Naval Research (ONR), United States Navy (USN), United Sates Army Medical Research and Material Command (USAMRMC), and US Naval Oceanographic Office (NAVO). He has authored and co-authored more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and refereed papers in conference proceedings and is the named inventor on at least twelve U.S. patents and patent applications and a Canadian patent directed to various robotic technologies and devices. He is the recipient of the 2013 GW SEAS Outstanding Young Researcher Award and the 2013 GW SEAS Outstanding Young Teacher Award, as well as several other honors and awards including best paper awards and is active in the professional community, such as organizing conferences and workshops. Dr. Ben-Tzvi is a Technical Editor for the IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics, Associate Editor for IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine, and Associate Editor for the Int'l Journal of Control, Automation and Systems, and served as an Associate Editor for IEEE ICRA 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017, and 2018. Dr. Ben-Tzvi is a senior member of IEEE and a member of ASME.