Assistant Professor, University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley
Dr. Lu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at The University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley. His research interests include swarm robotics, multi-robot systems, and autonomous mobile robots. Although many existing coordination algorithms were developed for homogeneous ground robots, they have limitations, such as a lack of advanced sensing, vision, and mobility. The diversity of heterogeneous robot swarms allows robots to collaborate and compensate for each other’s limitations while enhancing their strengths. For example, ground robots (UGVs) can simultaneously scout multiple locations and provide essential environmental information for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), while UAVs have superior vision and mobility, allowing them to detect objects and monitor the environment for UGVs. However, the centralized training approach is not scalable for heterogeneous robot swarms. Dr. Lu aims to create a highly efficient, resilient, and robust heterogeneous robot swarm system composed of UAVs and UGVs for foraging tasks such as search and rescue, humanitarian demining, agriculture harvesting, space exploration, etc. He leads the MARS (Multiple Autonomous Robot Systems) research lab. The research is supported by NSF CISE-MSI, NSF CREST-MECIS, and DHS SLA programs. Dr. Lu is dedicated to motivating and involving females, minorities, military veterans, and persons with disabilities in cutting-edge research.