University of Zagreb Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing (UNIZG FER) is the largest technical faculty and leading educational and R&D institution in the fields of electrical engineering, information and communication technology and computing in the Republic of Croatia. UNIZG FER is organised in 12 departments which represent the focal points of education, research and development in various fields. Researchers of the Faculty are currently leaders of 17 FP7 projects, 8 IPA (Instrument for Pre‐Accession Assistance), 4 Structural fund (ERDF), 17 multilateral COST actions, 10 bilateral projects, 4 Horizon 2020 projects, 1 LLP (Lifelong Learning Programme) project, 1 PROGRESS project, 3 Newfelpro‐ programme of mobility, 2 Air Force Office of Scientific Research projects and 2 NATO Science for Peace Program projects, as well as the leaders of a number of industrial projects.
In the last 20 years the Laboratory for Robotics and Intelligent Control Systems - LARICS (http://larics.rasip.fer.hr) research group has been involved in research on integrated robotics and process control. LARICS researchers (4 professors, 2 post‐docs and 6 PhD students) have mainly participated in research devoted to the unmanned aerial systems, intelligent control systems, service robotics, control of multi‐agent systems, robot formations, planning, scheduling and decision making in autonomous systems and application of new technologies in industrial control systems. LARICS is equipped with state-of-the-art electronics design software, aerial robotics systems, humanoid and bioinspired robots, ground mobile platforms, sets of various sensors, actuators and signal processing boards.
Particular emphasis has been given to collaboration with industry, which resulted in many successful implementations of novel control algorithms and human‐machine‐interfaces in industrial plants. LARICS researchers were involved in 4 EU FP7 projects, 2 on‐going (EuRoC, ASSISI_bf) and 2 successfully finished (ACROSS, EC‐SAFEMOBIL), as well as 2 H2020 projects, subCULTron, where they are WP leaders, and RoboCom++. They participate in several national projects financed by the government and industrial partners, and two collaborative projects with scientists from USA and PR China.
The University of Seville (USE) was created in the early 16th century and is one of the most important higher education institutions in Spain, with 70,000 students, 4,400 professors, and 2,400 administrative and service staff. USE will be involved in the project through the “Robotics, Vision and Control” (GRVC) group which has more than 75 researchers and engineers with strong expertise in robotics and particularly in aerial robotics. Thus, in 2018 the group participated in 12 H2020 projects related to aerial robotics and unmanned aerial systems.
GRVC has a long tradition of coordinating and participating in projects of the EU Framework Programmes (FP), including 4 projects of the FP4, 3 of the FP5, 3 of the FP6, 5 of FP7 and >10 projects in H2020.
USE will be involved in the project through the “Robotics, Vision and Control” (GRVC) group which has more than 75 researchers and engineers with strong expertise in robotics and particularly in aerial robotics. Thus, in 2018 the group participated in 12 H2020 projects related to aerial robotics and unmanned aerial systems. GRVC has a long tradition of coordinating and participating in projects of the EU Framework Programmes (FP), including 4 projects of the FP4, 3 of the FP5, 3 of the FP6, 5 of FP7 and >10 projects in H2020.
The GRVC group was the Scientific and Technical Coordinator of the FP5 COMETS IST project on the coordination and control of multiple heterogeneous unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), the first project in Europe demonstrating experimentally the cooperation of multiple UAVs with application to forest fires. GRVC coordinated the successful FP7 AWARE IST that developed and validated in field experiments a platform providing the functionalities required for the cooperation of UAVs with ground wireless networks, and joint load transportation by means of three coupled helicopters. GRVC is also the Associated Coordinator of the FP7 CONET Network of Excellence and the FP7 PLANET project. The head of the GRVC was the coordinator of ARCAS that is playing a main role in the emergence of the aerial manipulation developing aerial robots arms that can be considered the firsts in the world, and also the coordinator of the EC-SAFEMOBIL developing new techniques to increase the safety of aerial robots.
The GRVC is currently coordinating H2020 AEROARMS dealing with the development of aerial robots with two arms with manipulation capabilities. AEROARMS will be demostrated in a real industrial environment. The GRVC was also finalist of the EUropean RObotics Challenges (EUROC). The GRVC was selected as one ot the two finalist in the aerial robotics track out of more than 30 teams in Europe.
The head of the GRVC received the ERC Advanced Grant entitled "GRIFFIN: General compliant aerial Robotic manipulation system Integrating Fixed and Flapping wings to INcrease range and safety".
Led by Dr. Mirko Kovac, the Aerial Robotics Lab design and develop new bioinspired flying robots for infrastructures maintenance, construction and repair; aerial‐aquatic environmental monitoring; studying, sampling, and recovering in hazardous sites; and aerial soft robots.
Today, the team consists of 4 Post‐Doctoral Associates, 9 PhD students, numerous undergraduate researchers, and a Programme Manager.
The research group is highly multi‐disciplinary, covering expertise in several areas of robotics science and engineering (mechatronics, control, robotics locomotion/sensing strategy, fluidics/structures, biology) and has a large network of collaborations and projects at local and international level.
Within the Department of Aeronautics at Imperial, the Aerial Robotics Lab has recently developed a new multi‐terrain aerial robotics arena: a world‐unique experimental facility for the testing, optimization and validation of multi-modal mobility robots. The arena can be configured for various terrains, including air/ground/water and it allows for the setup of simulated challenging environments, industrial scenarios and urban infrastructures.
Within the AeroTwin project, Imperial will lead SRD3 “Aerial robots configurability”, including multimodality (adaptable wings, mechanisms for transition across fluid boundaries), energy management (robotic perching for energy saving and enhanced access), and aerial construction (3D printing with flying robots).
The team will be also responsible for WP2 “Networking and visibility - scientific community”, which aims to enhance UNIZG-FER networking capacity and scientific visibility through strengthening links to the aerial robotics research community.
Currently, CTA is owned by more than 158 companies, 70% of them SMEs, in 7 main European industrial priority sectors: ICT, Aerospace and productive processes, Agrifood, Biotechnology, Building and civil engineering, Energy and Environment, and Leisure and Tourism.
CTA’s main activity is advising, mentoring and funding (with own funds) innovation projects lead by companies and with a clear a measurable market application in a short and medium term, being therefore deeply embedded in the productive system. For the past 13 years, 661 projects have been supported with a total investment of some €163 million, having a leverage effect to mobilise additional private investment of 490 M€.
In addition, CTA organises technology awareness events and training for companies on key emerging areas. Regarding, the connection with public bodies, CTA is a policy advocacy body, providing strategic advice on innovation and technology to governments, from regional to international frameworks.
The Aerospace and Production Processes sector represents a 21% of the projects funded by CTA. A wide variety of CTA members are operating in the sector, including Airbus, as well as highly specialised spin-off university projects and sub-contractors of various types.