Sponsoring Organizations

Special Sessions

Special sessions offer a venue for providing exposure to topics of broad interest to the conference attendees, including, but not limited to, emerging research areas, funding opportunities, educational issues, industry applications or opportunities, job-hunting advice, etc. Special sessions often include a panel discussion with significant time for Q&A, but other formats are welcome.


Wednesday Sessions

Recent Developments in Advanced Control: Innovation and Collaboration in Honeywell
Sponsored by Honeywell Automation and Control Solutions

Wednesday, 12:15pm - 1:15pm, Room: Forum (3rd Floor)

Honeywell is a Fortune 100 company that invents and manufactures technologies to address some of the world’s toughest challenges linked to global macrotrends such as energy efficiency, clean energy generation, safety and security, globalization, and customer productivity. In this session you will hear about selected recent research in advanced control—and its impact—in the largest business group of the company, Automation and Control Solutions. The projects discussed are leveraging technical advances in control to solve customer problems in diverse domains. The presentations will cover the gamut of the industry R&D experience, from applied research to solution concepts to demonstrations and prototypes to released product.

Many of our advances have benefited from collaborations with academic colleagues, two of whom will participate in the session. We will also provide an overview of the company, including a brief history of our breakthrough developments in control over the last few decades, in areas as diverse as process control and optimization, energy management in homes and buildings, and avionics and flight management systems. The concluding presentation will highlight a new business recently established by Honeywell that has extended the footprint of our control applications to a new sector, automotive powertrains.

The session will consist of four presentations, as follows:

  • Introduction – Tariq Samad, Corporate Fellow, Honeywell ACS
  • Wireless Control over Networks – Rahul Mangharam, University of Pennsylvania
  • Advanced Building Control Systems – Francesco Borrelli, University of California, Berkeley
  • User-oriented Powertrain Modeling and Control – Greg Stewart, Honeywell Automotive Software

We invite you to come and learn about exciting new developments in control systems! Lunch will be provided, but quantities are limited so be sure to arrive early.


System modeling, control design, and low-cost hardware implementation of mechatronic systems
Sponsored by Mathworks

Wednesday, 12:15pm - 1:15pm, Room: Directors (3rd Floor)

Presenter: Craig Buhr

Low-cost hardware solutions are used in many applications such as quadcopters and mobile robots. These low-cost solutions provide an effective platform to give students hand-on experience through project based learning and competitions. In this presentation, we will demonstrate each step of the process for developing an embedded control system for a mobile robot using the LEGO MINDSTORM hardware. We show how to model and analyze the robot through simulation as well as design and validate a feedback controller using the simulated model. Finally we deploy the control algorithm to the robot and validate its performance.


Integrated Platforms for Massive Controls Education
Sponsored by National Instruments

Wednesday, 12:15pm - 1:15pm, Room: Studio (3rd Floor)

Presenter: Dan Nelson, Academic Controls Engineer

The advent of massive open online courses (MOOCs) has brought a wide range of course content and educational experiences. The ability to give students a quality hands-on experience in this broader environment can be difficult, yet hands-on experimentation is also necessary to fully internalize engineering concepts such as control theory. One solution to this problem is to leverage integrated hardware platforms that can extend the learning experience outside the classroom. This session will focus on how National Instruments has worked with educators on several initiatives to get engineering education tools in the hands of students. In this talk, we will discuss our most recent MOOC on Cyber-physical Systems leveraging LabVIEW physics-based robotic simulator and myRIO, an embedded student design device.


Industry Job Hunting
Wednesday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Forum (3rd Floor)

Organizer: Greg Stewart, Honeywell

This session will include a panel of both recent PhD graduates in controls and hiring managers. In the first half of the session, each panelist will speak for about 5 minutes describing their experience and advice for job-seekers. The second half will be open to the audience for Q&A.

  • Dr. Jakob Stoustrup (Moderator), Pacific Northwest National Labs
  • Dr. Rishi Amrit, Shell Technology Center Houston (Westhollow)
  • Dr. Stefano Di Cairano, Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories
  • Dr. Haitham Hindi, Walmart
  • Dr. Clas Jacobson, United Technologies Systems & Controls Engineering
  • Dr. Greg Stewart, Honeywell Automation and Control Solutions


Fundamental Challenges and Opportunities on Control, Communication, and Information Processing of Connected and Automated Vehicles
Wednesday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Studio (3rd Floor)

Organizers: Gabor Orosz and Necmiye Ozay, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Advanced control, communication and information processing systems are being developed to create safer, smarter and more efficient transportation infrastructures. Many companies are currently developing automated vehicles and both car manufacturers and governments push for the mandatory use of connected vehicle technologies starting as early as 2015. As many vehicles are equipped with such advanced technologies, there is a clear need for robust, fault-tolerant, and network-based control design that can improve safety, mobility and fuel-economy of transportation systems. This panel aims to discuss recent technical developments, research opportunities for control, and policy challenges with representatives from the automotive industry.

  • Derek Caveney,Toyota Technical Center
  • Christian Gerdes, Stanford University
  • Tony Phillips, Ford Motor Company


Fundamental Challenges and Opportunities on the Integration of the Renewables to the Aging Power Grid
Wednesday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Directors (3rd Floor)

Organizer: Murali Baggu, National Renewable Energy Lab.

Renewables integration involves deploying and operating enough flexible, controllable resources to ensure grid reliability given the variability and uncertainty associated with intermittent renewable power generation. This session will be a panel discussion on the fundamental challenges and opportunities on the integration of the renewables to the aging power grid. This session will be a panel discussion on the fundamental challenges and opportunities of the integration of the renewables, and PHEVs into the aging power grid.

  • Pranav Agarwal, GE Global Research
  • Murali Baggu, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
  • Jason MacDonald, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
  • Michael Polis, Oakland University


IEEE Transactions on Control of Network Systems
Wednesday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Council (3rd Floor)

Organizers: Yannis Paschalidis, Editor-in-Chief, and Magnus Egerstedt, Deputy Editor-in-Chief

We will hold a panel-led discussion focusing on the control of network systems. The panel will consist of members of the editorial board. The first half of the session will provide an update of this new IEEE Transactions, focusing on submissions, statistics, and topics covered. The second half will discuss emerging areas in the control of network systems and would address questions by the audience on this area of research and the operation of the journal. Join us if you would like to actively participate and contribute to this emerging research community.


Thursday Sessions

Academic Job Hunting
Thursday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Forum (3rd Floor)

Organizer: Mehran Mesbahi, University of Washington

The session will be about 1 hour long with a panel of five faculty members consisting of assistant professors at various stages of their careers, a former chair of a search committee, as well as a current department chair. In the first half of the session, each panelist would speak for about 5 minutes describing their experience and advice for academic job-seekers. The second half would be open to the audience for Q&A.

  • Mehran Mesbahi (Moderator), Professor and former Chair of a Search Committee University of Washington, Seattle
  • Behcet Acikmese, Assistant Professor, University of Texas, Austin
  • Joao Hespanha, Professor and Chair, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Anshu Narang-Siddarth, Assistant Professor University of Washington, Seattle
  • Peter Seiler, Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities


Fundamental Challenges and Opportunities in Control of Complex Electrical Systems
Thursday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Studio (3rd Floor)

Organizers: Jakob Stoustrup and Karan Kalsi, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Distributed control systems have significant scaling, adaptability and reliability advantages over conventional control systems. New control paradigms based on distributed controls offer significant economic and security benefits compared to existing strategies. The Control of Complex Systems Initiative (CCSI) will establish Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's (PNNL) leadership in the understanding and application of distributed controls to large-scale complex systems. The initiative will create an enduring capability in control theory, tools and testbeds that will provide the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) with a sound scientific basis for evolving its energy program goals and developing a controls-based research agenda in the electricity infrastructure and building technologies areas. The special session will address the fundamental challenge that CCSI is aiming to addresses in the development of generalizable methodologies for controlling large-scale complex engineered systems.

  • Dr. Jakob Stoustrup, Pacific Northwest National Labs
  • Prof. Sean Meyn, University of Florida
  • Prof. Richard Murray, California Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Tariq Samad, Honeywell
  • Prof. Wei Zhang, Ohio State University
  • Dr. Jeffrey Taft, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory


Lessons learned from starting venture capital backed robotics companies
Thursday, 6:30pm - 7:30pm, Room: Directors (3rd Floor)

Speaker: Bela L. Musits, Dean - School of Management, Union Graduate College, Co-founder and Venture Partner, High Peaks Ventures

The speaker has started two research based, venture back robotics companies: One in the industrial sector and the other in medical robotics. He will describe the challenges in commercializing research based technology, building a company and securing venture funding. Some of the controls technology challenges will also be discussed.


Friday Sessions

Opportunities at Mitsubishi Electric Research Lab
Sponsored by Mitsubishi Electric Research Lab
Friday, 12:15pm - 1:15pm, Room: Forum (3rd Floor)

Presenter: Scott Bortoff

MERL is the North American R&D organization for Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, a $48B global manufacturer of electrical products including elevator and escalators, HVAC systems, electrical power systems, satellites, factory automation equipment, automotive electronics and visual information systems. Researchers at MERL collaborate with corporate R&D laboratories, business units in Japan and academic partners around the world to extend the performance envelope of these systems.

In this presentation we describe our businesses, discuss mechatronics and controls research at MERL and describe opportunities for collaboration and employment. Areas of current research interest include Model Predictive Control, optimal control especially of nonlinear and hybrid systems, nonlinear dynamical systems, and modeling and control of multi-physical heterogeneous systems. Research projects at MERL typically address fundamental problems that are industrially-motivated and involve application of advanced control theory or dynamical systems theory to products resulting in new technology that is transferred into the corporate R&D laboratories for subsequent product development. Areas of current application include factory automation, automotive systems, HVAC, power generation and distribution, satellites, robot manipulation, and servo systems. MERL has a tradition of open collaboration and hosts visitors and interns especially during the summer months when our population increases by 50%. Researchers and students who have an interest in collaboration, visits, sabbatical leaves or permanent employment are invited.


Update on Funding Opportunities at the National Science Foundation
Sponsored by National Science Foundation
Friday, 12:15pm - 1:15pm, Room: Studio (3rd Floor)

Presenters: Eduardo Misawa, Jordan Berg, and George Chiu

The presenters will provide an update on funding opportunities at the National Science Foundation (NSF), in particular on programs related to research data and "Big Data". The NSF Control Systems (CS) program supports fundamental research on control theory and control technology driven by real life applications. The program emphasis is on paradigm-shifting ideas for control strategies that are inspired by nature, unconventional applications, and the combined roles of feedback, feedforward and uncertainty in systems. The program supports research that advances fundamental understanding, analysis and synthesis of control strategies and tools based on system formulation, assumptions and constraints that are motivated and derived from real-life applications and/or industry needs.



Conference Submission Site

Fast Facts:

Venue: Hilton Portland & Executive Tower
City: Portland, OR
When: June 4th - 6th 2014

Key Dates 

Draft Manuscripts: 
due September 27, 2013

Student Paper Nomination: 
due October 8, 2013 

Workshop Proposals
due October 18, 2013

Acceptance/Rejection Notice: 
Late January 2014

Registration Opens
February 2014  

Final Submissions
due March 18, 2014 

Advanced Registration Deadline: 
April 15, 2014 

Gold Sponsors



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Please contact
Dawn Tilbury
if you would like to
contribute sponsorship
to ACC2014