Nick Hawes

Autonomous Mobile Service Robots for Human Environments

To use robotics and artificial intelligence in near-future commercial applications it is crucial to identify problems which can be solved by existing, mature research technology. In this talk I'll focus on one such technology -- intelligent mobile service robots -- looking at their potential uses in human environments, plus one current challenge facing this technology: long-term autonomy in everyday environments. I will illustrate progress towards commercial applications with examples from our efforts to deploy mobile robots in real care and security settings via the EU-funded STRANDS project (

Dr Nick Hawes is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Computer Science at the University of Birmingham. His research applies techniques from artificial intelligence to allow robots to perform useful tasks for, or with, humans in everyday environments (such as making your breakfast, or supporting nursing staff in a care home). He is particularly interested in how robots can understand the world around them and how this world changes over time (e.g. where objects usually appear, how people move through buildings etc.), and how robots can exploit this knowledge to perform tasks more efficiently and intelligently.

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