Special Sessions


Call for Papers  ROBOT’2015 - The Second Iberian Robotics Conference

                Special Session on Tech Transfer and Innovation



Paper Submission: October 15th 31st, 2015

This session will not consider an ordinary scientific evaluation process for paper acceptance, it just look for histories and experiences about technology transfer an innovation in the field of Robotics. The papers accepted for this session in a first round will be presented at Robot2015 conference and will be considered for an special publication in this scope of technology transfer and innovation.


Looking for successful projects that means a real translation of the research results to innovative products or services in the field of robotics. A non-exhaustive list of topics include:

        - Startup companies.

        - Collaborative projects academia-industry.

        - Patent licensing.

        - Technical assistance to the industry.

        - Politics and strategies for promoting the connection between academy and industry.

        - Experiences with industrial clusters, technological  platforms and techno-parks.

        - …

Histories and experiences about European Frame Program, CYTED, INTERREG, MED, EUREKA, IBEROEKA and others, are especially welcome.

Best papers will be selected for extended versions to be included in Journal of Innovation Management.


Authors are invited to submit their work to this Special Session following the guidelines of Springer AISC template up to a maximum of 12 pages through the EasyChair interface.


        - Victor Muñoz-Martínez (University of Malaga , This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

        - António Paulo Moreira (INESC-TEC), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

        - Luis Paulo Reis (University of Minho), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

        - Luis Montano (University of Zaragoza), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For further information on the Special Session “Tech Transfer and Innovation”, please contact one of the track chairs

Regular Special Sessions 

Robot 2015 will feature a main track and 21 Special Sessions. Each special session focus on specific subject on robotics and is managed as a track in the easychair conference management system with special session proposers as track chairs. Paper Submission is Open at Easychair for the 21 Special Sessions (abstracts must be submitted by July 16th and full papers by July 20th)!

Special Session


Agricultural Robotics and Field Automation

Raul Morais Santos, Filipe Santos

Autonomous Driving and Driver Assistance Systems

Vitor Santos, Angel Sappa, Miguel Oliveira

Communication Aware Robotics

Danilo Tardioli, Alejandro Mosteo, Luis Riazuelo

Control and Planning in Aerial Robotics

Guillermo Heredia, Anibal Ollero

Educational Robotics

Armando Sousa, Fernando Ribeiro, Eduardo Gallego

Emerging UAV Technologies for Civil Applications

Guowei Cai, Tarek Taha, Jorge Dias, Lakmal Seneviratne

Environmental Robotics

João Valente, Antonio Barrientos

Future Industrial Robotics Systems

Germano Veiga, José Lima

Legal, Social and Ethics aspects about UAVs

Mariló Gramunt-Fombuena

Legged Locomotion Robots

Manuel Silva, Cristina Santos, Manuel Armada

Machine Learning in Robotics

Brígida Mónica Faria, Luis Merino

XVI Workshop on Physical Agents

Vicente Matellán, Miguel Ángel Cazorla, Rodrigo Ventura

Rehabilitation and Assistive Robotics

Nicolas Garcia-Aracil, Alicia Casals, Elena García

Robot Competitions

Bernardo Cunha

Robotic Applications in Art and Architecture

Manuel Silva, José Pedro Sousa, Marta Malé-Alemany

Simulation in Robotics

Nuno Lau, Artur Pereira

Social Robotics: Intelligent and Adaptable AAL Systems

Luís Santos, Jorge Dias

Surgical Robotics

Alicia Casals, Paulo Gonçalves, Nicolas Garcia, Jose Maria Sabater, Jorge Martins

Urban Robotics

Alberto Sanfeliu, Juan Andrade, Joao Sequeira, Anais Garrell

Visual Maps in Robotics

Oscar Reinoso Garcia

Visual Perception for Autonomous Robots

Andry Maykol Pinto, Nuno A. Cruz, Aníbal C. Matos


Agricultural Robotics and Field Automation

Org: Raul Morais Santos, Filipe Santos

This special session addresses the uses of robotics, information technologies and precision agriculture techniques to drive small and unattended autonomous vehicles through particular crops. Relevant session topics are navigation, trajectory planning, SLAM, computer vision, field sensors, Field automation that are enabling robots to perform autonomous operations such as harvesting, pruning, thinning, mowing, spraying, weed removal and phytopharmaceutical treatments application using VRT technologies. Research, development, innovation, and standardization in field robotics and automation towards safe, efficient, and cost-effective agricultural production systems are also relevant topics to be considered in this session.


Autonomous Driving and Driver Assistance Systems

Org: Vitor Santos, Angel Sappa, Miguel Oliveira

The session covers all issues related specifically to autonomous driving of robotic vehicles, namely those moving in roads, streets and similar pathways, as well as techniques to detect and recognize other agents and features of the environment to assist human drivers. The expected topics include, but are not limited to the following:

·         Vision, lidar and radar perception

·         Sensor calibration

·         Multimodal sensor fusion

·         Perception in challenging conditions

·         Scene understanding

·         Software architectures for autonomous vehicles

·         Special sensors for autonomous navigation

·         Driver-vehicle interaction and assisted driving

·         Navigation, motion planning and manoeuvring

·         Vehicle dynamics and control

·         Outdoors SLAM

·         V2V and V2I communications



Communication Aware Robotics

Org: Danilo Tardioli, Alejandro Mosteo, Luis Riazuelo

This track welcomes contributions dealing with communication aspects of robotics systems, theoretical studies, algorithm and protocol design for flexible robotics networks, as well as mission oriented contributions dealing with requirements, constraints, safety issues, and regulation. We are particularly looking for papers reporting on system aspects and experimental results, summaries of challenges or advancements, measurements, or innovative applications. The program seeks original work of potentially interdisciplinary teams to present robotic research or applications focusing on the communication challenges or requirements to the audience. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

·         MAC and routing protocols for robotics teams;

·         Robotics communication protocol design (requirements and challenges);

·         Theoretical analysis and models for robotics networks;

·         Solutions for sparse and dense fleets of MAVs;

·         Spectrum and regulatory issues;

·         Mission and context-aware solutions;

·         Drone ad-hoc networks;

·         Micro-flying systems;

·         Communication for drone coordination;

·         Mobility-aware and 3D communication;

·         Delay-tolerant networks and ferrying approaches;

·         Robot-based sensor networks;

·         Positioning and localization through radio frequency;

·         Robots movement, coordination, and behaviour;

·         Emergency applications;

·         Cooperative surveillance, smart cameras and sensors;

·         Experimental results of robotics communication testbeds;

·         Lessons learned on realistic use of networks in robotic applications.


Control and Planning in Aerial Robotics

Org: Guillermo Heredia, Anibal Ollero

The interest in Aerial Robotics continues to grow significantly each year. Many aerial robots applications like inspection, tracking, monitoring, or survey of areas or buildings have been developed. But also new applications are emerging which involve physical interaction with other vehicles or the environment, like aerial manipulation or autonomous refueling, and cooperation of multiple aerial robots and swarms. All these applications present challenges in control and planning of the aerial robots, which remain opened and require further scientific and technological efforts. The purpose of this special session is to bring together researchers in this field to present their latest developments on control and planning for aerial robotics, facilitate discussion on research directions and identify future collaborations.


Educational Robotics

Org: Armando Sousa, Fernando Ribeiro, Eduardo Gallego

This special session focussed on the growing área of educational robotics. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to: Teaching, Learning and Evaluation in Robotics, Mobile Robotics and Manipulator Arms; Robots in the classroom; Robotics (& Technology) assisted education; Educational tools in robotics teaching and learning; Robotics in Education: Basic School, Secondary School and Higher Education; Robotics to foster STEM areas; Robotics & Gender issues; Robotic demonstrators for education and public.


Emerging UAV Technologies for Civil Applications

Org: Guowei Cai, Tarek Taha, Jorge Dias, Lakmal Seneviratne

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) have gained a great deal of success in recent years due to their: high maneuverability; small size; ease of use; and the wide range of applications. Equipped with onboard sensors, a UAV could go into the heart of a storm or a spreading wildfire to monitor threats to human lives and property or travel through remote areas to gather environmental data. Benefited from advanced computing technology, refined mechanical design and decreasing manufacturing cost, UAVs have recently experienced a significant size reduction but performance enhancement, and have been prevalently employed in various civilian applications. The emerging popularity of UAV’s civil-based application also ignited a strong interest in the academia: over the past five years many researchers devoted into this field and an increasing number of results have been documented in the literature. This special session intends to gather researchers who are advanced in this field to present their cutting-edge research achievements, particularly on 1) smart city applications (e.g. construction site inspections and traffic monitoring); 2) vegetation/agricultural monitoring; 3) archeology surveillance and mapping; 4) multi-UAV cooperative surveillance and mapping; 5) cooperative mapping using heterogeneous unmanned systems; and 6) urban planning mapping, analysis and data collection.


Environmental Robotics

Org: João Valente, Antonio Barrientos

Environment awareness and conservation is an epoch-making subject in our society. Many scientific fields have contributed to size and address this concern. In the last 20 years many specific environmental missions pollution monitoring, soils conservation, natural disasters research, nuclear and radiation accidents using air, ground and underwater robots have been reported. This robots have been shipped with different sensory systems able to sense and gather biophysical data from broad areas for further analysis and study. This special session dedicated to environmental robotics will present late and future research within this field. Topics include, but are not limited to:

·         Air, ground and underwater robotic systems, or other robotic configuration.

·         Sensors and payload architectures.

·         Robotic systems design choices and motivation.

·         Design of testbed and experimental setups.

·         Multi-robot systems, heterogeneous fleets of robots, site specific collaborative behaviours.

·         Control and navigation.

·         Task planning, path planning and optimization approaches.

·         Adaptive sampling

·         Open-source software.

·         Experiments addressing long-term autonomy.

·         Open-issues and challenges.

·         Applications and case studies are very welcome!


Future Industrial Robotics Systems

Org: Germano Veiga, José Lima

The objective of this special session is to open a discussion forum that allows experts and potential end-users of the future industrial robotics systems application to cross share recent developments, challenges and current and new research trends. The advent of new robotics systems, such as mobile manipulators, safe robots for co-working, dual-arm robots, advanced sensors and new interaction technologies open a wide range of new application that in turn raise significant challenges that need to be tackled. The special session will provide the common ground in terms of what was brought by research in the last years and what are the manufacturing challenges that can sustain the takeoff of these new robotics technologies use in industrial settings. On one hand the special session will have end-users involved in industrial oriented research projects in manufacturing application scenarios and on the other hand the workshop will bring researchers together to share the latest research in topics such as Localization and Navigation, both platform and arm, Software frameworks, safe Human robot interaction and cooperation, Multi-robot cooperation, dual arm assembly, grasping and object recognition and localization. It is expected that the special session will contribute for the bridging of the gap between the industry needs and research activities, both pointing research challenges and high impact applications scenarios.


Legal, Social and Ethics aspects about UAVs

Org: Mariló Gramunt-Fombuena

The aim of this Special Session is to study, on the one hand, the UAVs legal framework concerning the liability related to their use in open and closed spaces with a non-military purpose. We will also tackle the coexistence between the use of UAVs and the preservation of Basic Citizens’ Rights, like privacy or communication secrecy. On the other hand we want to underline the impact this technology has on the social behavior, considering the changes that without a doubt the UAVs make in people's lifestyle. In this sense it is important to work the ethics aspects, specially if it is already possible we consider whether technology is actually neutral or not.


Legged Locomotion Robots

Org: Manuel Silva, Cristina Santos, Manuel Armada

In recent years significant advances have been made in creating bio-inspired machines. Scientists and engineers use human and animal characteristics to achieve these goals, as even the most advanced robots are much inferior to their biological counterparts. Human and animal locomotion is much more versatile, efficient and elegant and, therefore, it is reasonable to consider studying biological systems in order to apply their schemes in the design and control of legged robots.

Bearing in mind these ideas, the purpose of this Special Session is to join together engineers, roboticists, researchers, and students to present and discuss new developments and innovative projects that are relevant to the session topics of legged locomotion robots.


Machine Learning in Robotics

Org: Brígida Mónica Faria, Luis Merino

Robots act in a multi-modal world and have to cope with increasingly complex tasks. These tasks have been usually coped with using action rules and hand-crafted knowledge. This, however, limits the generalization of robotics systems to different domains and applications. Machine Learning can thus play an important role in Robotics. Applications of machine learning techniques allow a robot to acquire novel skills or to be able to adapt itself to its environment. Real time data acquisition and learning are interesting tasks to provide information for new skills of a robot. Examples of the skills that can be targeted by machine learning algorithms are locomotion, grasping, manipulation, human robot adaptive interface, robot vision and linguistic skills.

List of topics of interest:

·         Activity Recognition;

·         Adaptation, Configuration and Customization;

·         Behavior and Motion Optimization;

·         Classification for Robotics Applications;

·         Data Mining for Robotics;

·         Evolutionary-Based Learning;

·         Imitation Learning / Learning from Demonstration;

·         Integrating Learning with Robot Architectures;

·         Integration of Multi-Modal Information for Robot Learning;

·         Intent Prediction and Expression;

·         Learning Models of Robots, Tasks or Environments;

·         Learning of Plans, Control Policies and Strategies;

·         Methods for Probabilistic Inference in Robotics;

·         Optimization Methodologies for Robotics;

·         Reinforcement Learning / Learning from Experience.


XVI Workshop on Physical Agents

Org: Vicente Matellán, Miguel Ángel Cazorla, Rodrigo Ventura

The Workshop of Physical Agents (WAF) has been held for 15 years. It intends to be a forum for information and experiences exchange in different areas regarding the concept of agent on physical environments, especially applied to the control and coordination of autonomous systems: robots, mobile robots, industrial processes or complex systems. The steering committee of the Spanish Network on Physical Agents (RedAF) decided last year that it would be worthy to organize a special session as part of the ROBOT 2015, as we did in 2013 in Madrid.


Rehabilitation and Assistive Robotics

Org: Nicolas Garcia-Aracil, Alicia Casals, Elena García

It is estimated that in the EU the proportion of the population aged over 65 will rise from 17.1% in 2008 to 30% in 2060 and that the proportion of persons aged over 80 will rise from 4.4% to 12.1% over the same period (EUROSTAT population projections). Neurological conditions, especially stroke, are a major cause of disability among older people. Incidence of a first stroke in Europe is about 1.1 million and prevalence about 6 million. Currently, about 75% of stroke sufferers survive one year after. This proportion will increase in the coming years due to steadily increasing quality in hyper-acute lifesaving practice, follow-up acute and sub-acute care, and lifelong management of these conditions. Despite these positive developments in stroke care, approximately 80% of stroke patients experience long-term reduced manual dexterity, a 72% of those affected by stroke suffer leg weakness, affecting walking, and half of all patients with neurological conditions are unable to perform everyday tasks. Rehabilitation and Assistive robotics has the potential to changes older people lives improving their recovery and/or supporting them to perform everyday tasks. This special session aims to bring together robotic researchers performing leading research in the fields of Rehabilitation and Assistive robotics. Specific topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

·         Upper-limb Rehabilitation robotics;

·         Lower-limb Rehabilitation robotics;

·         Multimodal interfaces;

·         Assistive robotics;

·         Wearable robotics;

·         Telerehabilitation;

·         Technologies to Enhance Mobility and Function for Individuals with Severe Disability (e.g. Spinal Cord Injury, ASL, Muscle Dystrophy, etc.);

·         Robotic Prosthesis and Orthotics.


Robot Competitions

Org: Bernardo Cunha

Robot Competitions is, for nearly two decades now, an efficient way of testing, in real or simulated environments, the outcome of robotics research in comparison with the results from other scientific teams in similar fields. The competition provides, out of the lab, challenging scenarios where each team can verify, in a sort of common benchmark, the efficiency, error tolerance, resilience, stability, reliability and conformity of their solutions. Topics that can be addressed in this special session should focus specifically on robot competitions and may include but are not limited to areas such as:

·         Robot Hardware and Software including – mobile/humanoid robots, sensors and actuators, new materials, system integration, software architectures, robot simulators;

·         Perception and Action including cognition, learning, pattern recognition, image processing,motion and sensor models, efficient motion control;

·         Multi-Robot Systems including team coordination, swarm learning and adaptive systems, teamwork of heterogeneous agents, team adjustable autonomy;

·         Applications including service robots, search and rescue, surveillance, robots at home;

·         Human-Robot Interaction including speech synthesis, natural language generation, data visualization, emotion recognition, understanding human intent, safety and dependability.


Robotic Applications in Art and Architecture

Org: Manuel Silva, José Pedro Sousa, Marta Malé-Alemany

Presently we are witnessing an increasing adoption of industrial robots, with predictions for their further dissemination in distinct sectors. Although industrial robots are seen as the ultimate flexible manufacturing tools, their use in full-scale construction – as a replacement for manual labor – started in Japan in the 1980s with little success due to automation difficulties and economic reasons. Furthermore, those limitations also imposed some constraints on design creativity, becoming thus unattractive for architects. However, with their increasing capabilities in terms of flexibility, easiness of programming, stiffness and workspace, combined with lower prices, robots are again gaining popularity in architecture and in art. In the last decade, an increasing number of design schools worldwide started to integrate robotic fabrication technologies to investigate their potential for innovation in architecture and arts, and this trend is now starting to produce visible results in practice. The purpose of this Special Session is to join together engineers, architects, individual artists, designers, researchers, and students to present and discuss new developments and innovative projects that are relevant to the session topics of robotics application in architecture, art, and design.


Simulation in Robotics

Org: Nuno Lau, Artur Pereira

While robotics is inherently a very practical research area, the use of simulators in robotics research is very common, as they provide a cost and time effective and safe methodology to develop the robot software. The use of simulation also enables a level of introspection and control over the evolution of time, that is seldom available when using real robots, and allows an easy way to perform repetitive tests. There are several quite realistic robotic simulators available for the use in robotics research. However, the study on general methodologies to swap from robotic simulation to its application in real robots is still a research problem. This Special Session is focussed on the use of simulation in robotics. It aims at gathering researchers that use or develop robotic simulators to present their novel research on these subjects. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

·         Robotic simulators in education and training;

·         Simulated robotic competitions;

·         Machine learning in robotics using simulators;

·         Robotic simulator technologies;

·         Simulated multi-agent robotic systems;

·         Development tools for Robotics;

·         Simulated humanoid robots;

·         Simulation of robotic sensors and actuators;

·         Modelling and simulation of complex robots.


Social Robotics: Intelligent and Adaptable AAL Systems

Org: Luís Santos, Jorge Dias

Population ageing is an emerging problem that is creating interesting challenges. A new wave of technological platforms is being developed with the purpose of assisting elderly people and improving the sustainability of care systems. We aim to identify established and trending technologies, research and successful projects that have actively contributed to the current state of the art solutions in Active Assisted Living domain. This session is proposed mainly, but not limited to, the areas of personalized agents and smart environments that react to specific contexts and adapt their services to specific user needs. Concrete examples of such systems address issues like vision-based and multimodal approaches to detect interactions between systems and users, the integration of language and speech with vision for automatic and fluent interaction, classification of non--‐verbal signals, gestures and environmental contextual data, innovative ICT services, Cloud Computing in Smart Environments and Sensor Fusion Information to name a few. The goal is to gather researchers whose work focuses on intelligent and adaptable AAL systems This special session brings together different disciplines, like researchers of computer vision, multimedia, robotics, HCI, artificial intelligence, pattern recognition, interaction design, and ambient intelligence. The diversity of intelligent systems, pattern recognition, the richness of multi--‐modal data available from Smart Environments, and the numerous AAL applications that demand rapid progress in this area ensure that this workshop provides a timely and relevant discussion and dissemination platform. List of Topics:

·         Social Robotics

·         Assistive Robotics

·         Ambient Assisted Living Environments

·         Multimodal Human--‐Machine Interaction

·         Action, Emotion and Face Recognition

·         ICT--‐Service based platforms

·         Social Robotics in AAL: State of Art and Future Challenges

·         Pattern Recognition in Ambient Assisted Living Systems

·          Adaptable AAL Systems


Surgical Robotics

Org: Alicia Casals, Paulo Gonçalves, Nicolas Garcia, Jose Maria Sabater, Jorge Martins

This session is focussed on Surgical Robotics. We cordially invite all researchers working in the fascinating field of Surgical Robotics to submit their original work and contribute to a high quality Special Session at ROBOT'2015. The topics of interest encompass design, safety, planning and registration, haptics, medical imaging, modeling, control, and applications. The aim of this Special Session is to bring together at ROBOT'2015 researchers performing leading research on Surgical Robotics. We wish to provide a dedicated forum within ROBOT'2015 where recent advances on the application of robotics to surgery in its diverse fronts may be presented and discussed.


Urban Robotics

Org: Alberto Sanfeliu, Juan Andrade, Joao Sequeira, Anais Garrell

The session is devoted to theory and practice of robotics technologies applied to various urban scenarios. A nonexhaustive list of topics include: ‐Robotics methods in urban areas; Social Robotics in urban areas; Autonomous driving; Advanced driving assistance systems; Autonomous transportation of cargo; Logistics applications of robotics; Robotics applications in urban areas.


Visual Maps in Robotics

Org: Oscar Reinoso Garcia

The ability to locate on maps quickly and robustly is essential for autonomous robot navigation. The maps can be constructed from information provided by different sensory systems. One such possibility is to use vision systems to provide information of the environment and building a map from it. These maps are called visual maps. Such maps can be constructed from scale-invariant image features as natural ladnmarks using metric information of the landmarks, or using topological instead metric information through global appearance of the images. Also it can be used a visual representation of the maps that combines both metrical and topological spatial information in hybrid structures. Vision systems can be used in multiple ways: monocular vision systems, sterovision, omnidirectional vision. Topics include, but are not limited to: Topological visual maps; Visual SLAM; 3D visual maps; Visual appearance; Omnidirectional vision.


Visual Perception for Autonomous Robots

Org: Andry Maykol Pinto, Nuno A. Cruz, Aníbal C. Matos

Visual perception is one of the most relevant areas under discussion in robotics and computer vision. Extracting high level information from the environment increases the ability of a robot to detect, identify and track the individual elements of the scene. Most of the existing methods cannot overcome the real-time constraints that are imposed by robotic applications since they commonly take more than a few of seconds to compute. Therefore, it is crucial to overcome certain problems related with the perception and the interpretation of scenes (below or underwater). Therefore, vision computing is a challenging research field, especially, for small mobile robots because of their reduced computational capability (enhancing the autonomy) and limited size. Some specific topics include: Computer Vision and Recognition; Machine Learning in Robotics; Underwater Vision; Scene Reconstruction and Interpretation; Autonomous Surveillance, Inspection and Monotoring; Design of Autonomous Vehicles and Applications.


Organized by:

SPR – Sociedade Portuguesa de Robótica and SEIDROB – Sociedad Española para la Investigación y Desarrollo en Robótica and GTROB - Grupo de Robótica de CEA









Important Dates

Special Session Proposals:

May 10, 2015

Special Session Acceptance:

May 25, 2015

Paper Submission (extended):

July 20, 2015 


September 11, 2015

Early Registration:

September 21, 2015

Camera Ready:

September 21, 2015

Registration Limit:

October 30, 2015


November 19-21, 2015
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