Research Topics

The main theme of my research is learning by doing by practice. I've developed it under two complementary angles of approach related to my successive assignments in laboratories.

Firstly, from the perspective of IT (E-Learning) during the period 2001-2010, in the former research laboratories ICTT and LIESP, where I created a research theme concerning the distancing and interconnection of technological educational models (automatic systems industries, for example).

Then from the robotics angle, since 2011 at the Ampère laboratory where I contribute to the research activity in Medical Robotics, on Haptic Training Simulation. I have developed a new axis research on multi-user simulators (dual-user).




I worked on this research activity between 2001 and 2010 in former laboratories ICTT and then LIESP. This research dealt with computer-aided hands-on laboratories (e-laboratories) in the more general context of E-Learning.



Remote Labs

With Hcene Benhmohamed, we have proposed a generic architecture for a remote-lab (RL) editing chain in order to offer tools common to all authors of RL training scenarios (real or virtual), usable whatever the discipline or the technological device, while taking advantage of existing tools (LMS, LCMS) for other more conceptual content. This work has gradually been the subject of several communications between 2002 and 2008 (see below). The common points (pedagogical objectives, pedagogical activities , communication between human actors, ...) between real and virtual RL pushed us to propose a chain indistinctly integrating these two forms of e-lab like the COLAB platform. The existing devices for online training are equipped with sufficient and interesting functionalities to be able to meet the needs specific to this type of training (learner monitoring, collaborative work, administration system, etc.). It therefore did not seem judicious to us to develop a new one, but on the contrary, to graft to these devices tools implementing additional functionalities, specific to RL. These tools must be sufficiently modular and generic to be able to be integrated and reused, we have had to study the standardization of these devices.

Scientific approach

We proposed the following approach:
  1. modeling of particular practical exercises, in four stages (observation of three situations of automatic practical work face-to-face, identification of invariable aspects from one lab to another, conceptualization then verification and validation by a fourth practical work)
  2. Construction of a RL model from the previous lab model by identifying invariable topics between face-to-face and remotely, taking into account the constraints (temporal, spatial, organizational, etc.) then extension (addition of additional functions) and ablation (removal of impossible functions) of the model as well as got
  3. validation of the teleTP model using 4 realizations (top-down and iterative approach): instantiation of the model in four particular RL, observation of the actual course of the training act, realization a return of uses in order to make possible corrections to the model then possible correction of this model depending on the results of the user feedback.

Generic model of automation laboratories

We have therefore developed a generic model around three key elements:
  • an IT environment providing:
    • the remote operation tools of a system in the broad sense of the term and which can typically be a model pedagogical, with a level of controllability and observability sufficient for the distance between the manipulated system and the learner hinder learning as little as possible,
    • an “engine” of training scenarios with online supervision and evaluation functionalities,
    • a means of communication (of the videoconference type) between learners and trainer,
  • a methodology helping trainers to distance their practical lab models via this device,
  • an authoring environment to edit scenarios without being a computer expert.
To gradually validate our proposals, we used and gradually improved a platform experimental teleTP which had been designed in 2000-2001, so just before my arrival at ICTT [LR] , in the framework of the collective project 1 Octopus. We were helped in 2001-2002 by other students as part of the project collective TIPY [P] . The students produced a first version of the work management and distribution environment remote practices and organized a user feedback campaign. The answers to the interviews were synthesized from the point of view of the educational objectives expected from the practical work, the role of the teachers in the session, the interventions of the teachers, the evaluation of the students, the resources teaching materials made available to students, the chronology of sessions, student activity, constraints

Generic E-Lab Edition Chain

This publishing chain is the first iteration of an ongoing project between 2001 and 2010. To be able to offer RL to trainees, it is necessary to offer tools covering the entire process of editing content from writing from the pedagogical scenario associated with a device to the rendering of the final report by the learners. This chain has an interest only if it offers possibilities of

  • reuse content in other scenarios;
  • reuse this content on other devices if it has been organized sufficiently independently of the pedagogical system from the start;
  • adapt these contents to similar devices (for example on a model having the same functionalities but a slightly different implementation: scopes, PLCs, software, ... from and/or brands and different models, etc.).

The life cycle that we have proposed includes three main stages :

  • the declaration of the various technological devices within a teleTP platform (called ELaMS);
  • editing and re-editing of “generic” scenarios (in the same family of devices with identical functions);
  • the use of these scenarios by tutors after adaptation to the target device.

Our contribution for this life cycle has been a platform integrating tools for E-Learning standards (LMS , LCMS) and a middleware offering them specific functionalities for RL This software is capable of exchanging data in the standard IMS-LD format. We used Coppercore (OUNL) as LMS. It was expected that version 2 of Moodle integrates this standard but this was ultimately not the case.
We have designed the ELaMS (Electronic Laboratory Management System) middleware, whose functionalities are to install and reference new training devices, open their access to trainees and tutors (depending on their own access rights, availability of devices and features required in the training scenario).
It was able to automatically direct a learner to a free device (once and for all or at each manipulation) using scheduling algorithms. An analysis of functional risks related to RL platforms was carried out using the FMEA method, to highlight the critical elements for which preventive and curative solutions must be put in place to ensure continuity of service. ELaMS was based on functional descriptions of the components and functions of each device, coded with ontologies. For this, we were inspired by the techniques of the Semantic Web by adopting a recent standard at the time: OWL, standardized by the W3C.
These ontologies were hosted on an ontology server (called OntoServ) and described the components and the functions they offer to RL actors. We created these ontologies via Protégé software (Stanford University), a royalty-free ontology editing software. They were public, posted on a web server.
For this ontology development work, I teamed up with Jacques Fayolle and Christophe Gravier LT2C, who were also working on RL with a more “low level” approach in the sense of “IT-Telecom”. We worked together on the structure of these ontologies so that they could work easily with the laboratory device remote tools they were developing.
ELaMS also integrated functionalities for managing and planning the use of shared resources (the training models). From a practical point of view, we had reused a free tool PhpScheduleIt. We had nevertheless looked into strategies for optimizing the planning of these resources by making the parallel with task scheduling in real-time systems. The design and implementation of the ELaMS tool are detailed in Hcene's Ph.D. report.

My publications on this topic


Here is the list of publications related to this research topic.



This research activity, carried out at the Ampère laboratory, deals with the fields of Automation and Robotics: in the broad sense, control of mechatronic systems.
It has both methodological and applied characters, which explains my commitment to the development of experimental platforms within the Fluid Power Test Center of Ampere laboratory. The topics I work on are:

  • haptic interfaces, mainly in medical robotics,
  • teleoperation and bilateral control,
  • gesture recognition and learning.

All in one: Research Projects about Robotics

Period Project Name Description
2017-2021 Green Shield: Pesticide Free Robotized Pest Control in Agriculture This project aims at designing and prototyping a mobile robot to detect and kill pests in fields.
2015-2017 PERISim
This project aims at designing and prototyping an needle insertion training simulator for epidural anaesthesia.
2015-2017 LAPAROSim
This project aimed at designing and prototyping a training simulator concerning basic gestures in Laparoscopy.
2013-2017 SoHappy
In collaboration with PRISME institute, this project aims at prototyping remote ultrasonography haptic probes using pneumatic actuators.
2012-2015 INTELO
(FEDER Région Rhône Alpes with European funds)

This project aimed at designing and prototyping a mobile robot to inspect the underneath of railway and road bridges.

2013-2016 SAGA
(ANR Modèles Numériques)

This project consisted of enhancing and extending BirthSIM simulator.
2011-2013 Decortiquemax
This project aimed at studying a pneumatic actuating for a needle insertion robot compliant with MRI scanners.
2008-2011 PROSIT Teleoperation work-package
As a collaborator of LIRMM laboratory, I participated to the study of the teleoperation over Internet and a satellite connection of the remote ultrasonography robot developed by the partners during this project.

Haptic Systems for Hands-on Training

2015-... PERISIM: Simulator of Epidural Needle Insertion

Research Project
Objective: Study, Design and Prototyping of an Epidural Anaesthesia Simulator

Keywords: Haptics, Hands-on Training, Simulation, Anaesthetics, Medical Robotics

Students: Pierre-Jean ALES-ROUX (MSc 2015), Thibaut SENAC (MSc 2016) and (PhD)

In collaboration with: Richard MOREAU

Period: 2015-2019

Financed by IDEFI SAMSEI

Publication list: click here

PhD report: click here

2016-2020 Sparte

Research Project
Objective: Study, Design and Prototyping of a training simulator for needle insertion under ultrasonography in Rheumatology

Keywords: Haptics, Hands-on Training, Simulation, Rheumatology, Medical Robotics, Needle Insertion, Ultrasonography

In collaboration with: Richard MOREAU

Financed by IDEFI SAMSEI

Period: 2015-2019

Dual User Haptic Training

Joint trainer and trainee haptic simulation (for learning by doing)


For surgical gestures that are more difficult to acquire, the classic training method, in the field (in the operating room), consists, for a trainee, in operating on a patient, the hands guided by those of a trainer (nicknamed “four-handed” method). However, this does not currently find its equivalent in computer based simulators where the trainees are alone with their tools immersed in their environment.

It presents however some disadvantages: in particular, it is difficult for the two people to dose, for one and to estimate
for the other, the efforts to be made when the four hands are joined two by two because the effort is shared in such a random way
between the two people. It is a real obstacle for training the gesture because this dimension is distorted.

In the synthesis [Coles 2010] concerning educational simulators in the medical field, it appears that the current simulators are mainly based on real or virtual environments where the trainee is alone, which makes any possibility of guiding him in his actions difficult. Yet, as in practical training in four hands, especially for complex gestures, it is important that the trainer can intervene; to guide the trainees, to evaluate them immediately, or to correct potentially dangerous trajectories.

It is also necessary, for more flexibility in the training, to keep the possibility for the trainer to intervene in the simulation as he classically intervenes in classical practical training. It is not possible to program all scenarios in advance in the simulator. In use, the most recurrent can gradually be integrated into the simulator, but there will always be special cases where the intervention
of the trainer will be necessary: ​​to unblock the trainees, to advise them, ... Hence the interest of proposing simulators integrating the trainer into the simulation.

The da Vinci Si dual-console system robot [g71] offers a training mode for two concurrent users. However, only one user at a time has access to the instruments and neither user has no haptic feedback.

In dual user systems, several haptic interfaces are connected to a robot (real or virtual) thanks to a software. The parameter α determines the dominance of each user over the slave. When α = 1 (resp. α = 0, it is user 1 (resp. 2) who has complete control of the slave. When 0


First, we designed the bases of a new educational simulator, gesture training, usable to two users (trainer and learner) based on a novel controller, managing energy exchanges between sub-systems (Energy Shared Control - ESC) [Liu 2015].The energy approach (modeling by Hamiltonian ports) offers the advantage of proving intrinsically that the system is passive whatever the evolution of α (which is not the case time-invariant linear dual-user models where α is a parameter and is therefore supposed to be constant).
Whatever the level of authority granted to a user, the latter perceives an effort feedback in accordance with the interaction efforts tool-environment, even if it is not the user at the origin of this interaction; thus the person who observes the movement feels the same efforts as the person actually handling the tool. This property was not seen ever in the scientific literature.

We validated it experimentally using axis 1 (vertical) of two Omni haptic interfaces and one virtual interface (simulated under Matlab) . Having noticed that the trainer needs to regain control very quickly in the event of an erroneous or dangerous gesture (like the driving instructor who can brake on his own brake pedal), we have developed the AAA (Adaptive Authority Adjustment) function which, when in evaluation mode, switches control back (changes α) to the trainer as soon as the trajectory of its interface moves away (necessarily voluntarily) from that of the learner.

However, this solution had the disadvantage of requiring two parameters that were difficult to adjust by a non-professional trainer.
We compared the performance of ESC against two recognized architectures offered by Khademian and Hashtrudi-Zaad [Khademian 2011](Complementary Linear Combination (CLC) and Masters Correspondence
with Environment Transfer (MCET)), in simulation [Liu 2016]. This study demonstrated that the performance of ESC in terms of position tracking were equivalent to those of CLC and MCET. However, the force feedback from ESC is intrinsically better for educational applications because CLC and MCET do not allow to realize demonstrations and evaluations involving simultaneous positioning and force feedback to both users.
We then improved ESC for which the environment and users were assumed to be passive (which is debatable particularly concerning the users). We added a passivity controller (Time Domain Passivity Controller: TDPC) to keep the system passive whatever the behavior of the slave environment and of the users and independently of α and the parameters of the IPC controllers. [Liu 2016]

At the end of Fei Liu's Ph.D., this simulator had only one degree of freedom (one rotation).
Angel Licona's objectives were to extend this simulator in terms of degrees of freedom.

Thus, we tested this architecture with n degrees of freedom by duplicating ESC for each joint. This supposes that the three interfaces have the same kinematics. That is the case for the masters but one can argue for the slave. We experimentally tested this approach with three degrees of freedom. The results are available in [Liu 2019].
We also proposed a new algorithm for AAA (also extended to n degrees of freedom) which now requires only one easily adjustable parameter in continuous by the trainer, in order to leave more or less freedom of movement to the learner.
Experiments were carried out integrating all these developments . They were published in [Liu 2019b].

We have studied the extension of this architecture to m > 2 users in order to meet the needs of collective training during which, for example, the trainer would only have to perform a single demonstration to m − 1 simultaneous learners. All other scenarios are possible as long as a single user is in control on the slave and the other observers. This experimentally validated study was published as part of the IROS 2019 conference [Licona 2019].

We have also studied the use of ESC with haptic interfaces with different kinematics to be able to control a slave robot different from the haptic interfaces, which seems the most interesting configuration in practice. For this, we proposed to use ESC for each dimension in Cartesian space instead of the joint space, hypothesizing that the couplings between these dimensions would be considered as disturbances by each IPC controller and absorbed as such.

Pneumatic Actuation for Haptic Feeback and Teleoperation


Haptic systems are designed for the interaction between a virtual tool in a simulation situation computing [Corrêa 2019], to teleoperate a remote robot (carrying a haptic probe, for example Krupa 2014], or a UAV flotilla [Son 2019], ...
For educational purposes, the behavior of such systems must be realistic (also closer than the tool they simulate), but off-the-shelf haptic systems are not always suitable [Kheddar 2004].

For some practical reasons, commercial simulators are equipped with electric actuators which provide feedback imitating, for example, the behavior of a tool touching a human organ in a surgical context.
Today, the haptic control laws applied to electric actuators are well mastered.
However, electric actuators have certain limitations for this type of use:

  • they have a lower power-to-weight ratio than pneumatic actuators;
  • it is difficult for them to provide a high torque at high speed;
  • they need reducers (which limits their reversibility), and;
  • they heat up when low-speed torque is required.

All these limitations reduce their performance when it is necessary to reproduce a variable stiffness quickly.
For several decades, complex mechanisms have been devised with the aim of providing compliance to actuators: these are called “Variable Stiffness Actuators – UAV ”. These actuators independently control their balance position and stiffness. Van Ham et al. present a state of the art on VSAs [Van Ham]. Most of them are designed with two opposing electric motors and passive compliant components. One of the advantages of this approach is that the control of position and stiffness are obtained independently by controlling the position of each motor. The main disadvantages are their cost (two motors per axis) and the limited amplitude of the stiffness due to the use of passive components [Huang 2013].

Shortly before my arrival at the Ampère laboratory, due to a long-standing expertise in action control, pneumatic actuators, the medical robotics team had begun to take an interest in the use of such actuators to render a haptic rendering. This technology is underused at the industrial level because it is considered too complex to control. However, it brings new possibilities in the medical field. In fact the actuators tires have a very interesting structural compliance. Simultaneous pressure control in both chambers of a cylinder opens the way to control of the mechanical stiffness of the piston and therefore to a rendering in effort of better quality than that obtained with electric actuators. At equal and constant pressure at rest in each chamber of a jack, this one, during an excitation, will react like a spring presenting a stiffness during the initial pressure level. With an electrical system, it is necessary to enslave the motor to recreate this natural phenomenon. On the other hand, by adjusting the pressure difference in each chamber, it is possible to check the pneumatic force applied to the piston. In summary, the advantages of pneumatic actuators over electric actuators are:

  • a higher force-to-mass ratio;
  • the non-necessity of a reducer;
  • their ability to be powered by energy readily available in industrial and medical environments and sufficient
    sufficiently clean (provided it is filtered) for biomedical applications;
  • the possibility of being non-magnetic, which allows them to be used in environments such as an MRI.

However, pneumatic actuators have a major drawback: the air is compressible and the behavior of pneumatic actuators is inherently non-linear. Unlike hydraulic actuators, dry friction is important since air is a low viscous fluid.


In 2011, when I arrived at the Ampère laboratory, a research project concerning the teleoperation of robots using pneumatic actuators had been started. Indeed, it turned out that many works dealt with the modeling of pneumatic components (actuators, power modulators) but also their control with a view of position or force control [Belgharbi, 1999], but very few concerned their use in teleoperation. In the framework of of Minh Quyen Le's Ph.D., the team had developed a pneumatic haptic interface that could accommodate two types of power modulators: proportional servo valves or solenoid valves. The servo valves deliver an air flow depending on the control voltage and downstream pressure, while the control of solenoid valves is limited to open or close.
In the industrial world, despite their performance, servo valves are much less widespread than solenoid valves because of their price but also the expertise needed to fully exploit them. A modeling had been proposed and a control architecture produced using a linear tangent model of the pneumatic and mechanical chain around an operating point. This model resulted in a transfer function of the third order (integrator + second order) which has been used in a four-channel teleoperation architecture.
Experiments led to interesting results.

However, additional experiments, which I conducted personally upon my arrival, showed that this control architecture did not make it possible to correctly control the pressure levels in the cylinder chambers, resulting in under-performance. Typically, cylinder chambers were often at average pressure levels close to the intake pressure (therefore at the maximum), which prevented to efficiently and quickly generate pneumatic forces as it was necessary to wait for one of the chambers to empty the air, to generate this desired force. Maintaining the chambers at an intermediate pressure would have made it possible to play simultaneously on the pressurization of one chamber and the depressurization of the other and to gain in dynamics.
On the other hand, for our haptic applications, the choice of servo-valves available on the market is limited because the latter are mainly dedicated to more powerful industrial applications and are poorly suited to low forces and small displacements encountered in our case. For all these reasons, the team had simultaneously decided to study the use of solenoid valves. Unlike proportional servo valves, there is a range largest number of off-the-shelf solenoid valves. These components have an on/off type operation which more coarsely modulates the useful air flow. By playing on the rapid switching from closing to the opening (and vice versa) of the solenoid valves, the team sought to control the flow of air sent to the rooms pneumatic actuators (and the exhaust flow from them). It was therefore an approach of control of a hybrid system: switching and non-linear dynamics.

For my part, I participated in the development, optimization and experimental validation of the integration control laws developed by the team for a pneumatic actuator in a teleoperation loop with only one degree of freedom.

Two control approaches have been proposed, tested and compared. This work has been published in two international journal articles [Hodgson 2014a] [Hodgson 2015] and two international communications [Hodgson 2012] [Hodgson 2014b].



This activity started in 1996 :

This research activity drastically slowed down between 2001 and 2011 as I was working on E-Laboratories in ICTT and afterwards in LIESP laboratories, both dealing with e-learning research topics.

Since early 2011, this topic is restarting at AMPERE laboratory and in collaboration with LIRMM robotics team.

Introduction to teleoperation

There are situations when firms or laboratories have to resort to remote manipulation. Such cases appear when dangerous objects have to be handled [1] or/and when the environment is too aggressive for humans. Typical applications belong to the nuclear domain (for instance in the dismantling of a nuclear plant), deep-sea domain (work on underwater structures of oil rigs) and spatial domain (exploration of distant planets).

Teleoperation has the supplementary advantage of giving the possibility of sharing an experiment between several operators located in distinct places. This way, heavy outdoor experimentations could be easily shared between several laboratories and costs could be reduced as much. However, long distance control of a remote system requires the use of different transmission media which causes two main technical problems in teleoperation: limited bandwidth and transmission delays due to the propagation, packetisation and many other events digital links may inflict on data [2]. Moreover bandwidth and delays may vary according to events occurring all along the transmission lines. In acoustic transmission, round-trip delays greater than 10s and bit-rates smaller than 10kbits/s are common.

These technical constraints result in one hand in difficulties for the operator to securely control the remote system and, in the other hand, make classical controls unstable. Many researches have proposed solutions when delays are small or constant (for instance [3]), but when delays go beyond a few seconds and vary a lot as over long distances asynchronous links, solutions not based on teleprogramation [4] are fewer because such delays make master and slave asynchronous and the control unstable.

Work done

We worked on a low-level teleoperation technique when transmissions go through asynchronous computer networks such as local IP networks and the Internet when necessary. This architecture provides constant delays and synchronous data transmission when network delays have jitter. It also features a prediction/estimation function located on the master in order to compensate for delayed feedback. As soon as this low level layer gets into steady state, an higher level teleoperation scheme can be used (Position Error Based, 4 channel, wave transformations, ... ) such as in [3].

This work has been applied on an enhanced mobile manipulator (see [1])

A small piece of bibliography related to this topic

  1. A. LELEVÉ, P. FRAISSE, P. DAUCHEZ & F. PIERROT, "An enhanced mobile manipulator”, Proc. of the 4th World Automation Congress (WAC 2K), Maui, Hawaii, USA, 2000.
  2. R. OBOE, P. FIORINI, "Internet-based telerobotics: problems and approaches", Proc Intl. Conf. on Advanced Robotics (ICAR’97), Monterey (CA - USA), July 1997, pp. 765—770.
  3. G. NIEMEYER & J-J. E. SLOTINE, “Designing Force Reflecting Teleoperators with Large Time Delays to Appear as Virtual Tools”, Proc. of the IEEE Intl. Conf. on Robotics and Automation (ICRA’97), pp. 2212—2218.
  4. P. G. BACKES, K. S. TUO, J. S. NORRIS, G. K. THARP, J. T. SLOSTAD, R. G. BONITZ & K. S. ALI, “Internet-Based Operations for the Mars Polar Lander Mission”, Proc. of the IEEE/ASME Intl. Conf. on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, September 1999, pp. 317—322.

Control of a teleoperation system actuated by low-cost pneumatic on/off valves

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Networked Robots slides

Slides (in french) from presentation given at 4th ARC meeting of ARC workgroup of GDR Macs on April 1st 2011

PDF icon ARC2011-slides.pdf7.08 MB
Image icon robot team coin purse.jpg72.13 KB

Towards Delayed Teleoperation with Pneumatic Master and Slave for MRI

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MSc / PhD / PostDoc Supervision

2003-2007 PhD: ICTT@Lab: a software environment for the generation and execution of Remote Laboratory Scenarios

Student: Dr Hacen Benmohamed

French title: ICTT@Lab: un environnement informatique pour la génération et l’exécution de scénarios de téléTP

Summary (in French)
Ces travaux de thèse s'inscrivent dans le domaine de la e-formation, et concernent la conception d'un environnement générique de téléTP en sciences de l'ingénierie, accompagné d'une méthodologie de mise à distance de dispositifs technologiques. Jusqu'alors la e-formation se limitait aux domaines où l'enseignement théorique prime sur l'enseignement pratique et les manipulations. Pour faire de la e-formation un outil viable et largement utilisé, les téléTP doivent y avoir une place centrale car ils répondent à un besoin reconnu d'activités pratiques dans les disciplines scientifiques et techniques. Cette intégration doit s'accompagner des mêmes facilités d'édition, d'utilisation et de réutilisabilité que les autres contenus, plus conceptuels (téléCours, téléTD, téléProjet, ...). Dans ce contexte, nous proposons un framework, nommé ICTT@Lab (generIC framework for remoTe and virTu@l Laboratory integration), s'intégrant dans une plate-forme d'e-formation aux côtés d'un LMS compatible avec la spécification IMS-LD et fournissant les services nécessaires et spécifiques à l'édition et à la réalisation de téléTP. En se basant sur des ontologies spécifiant composants et fonctionnalités classiques d'un dispositif technologique, les auteurs de scénarios peuvent désormais éditer leurs scénarios pédagogiques au format IMS-LD et les lier à une classe de dispositifs technologiques (réels ou virtuels). Ils les rendent ainsi compatibles avec n'importe quel dispositif associé à la même classe, autorisant de fait, la réutilisation de leur production sur d'autres plates-formes de téléTP. L'ensemble de cette architecture est accompagné d'une chaîne d'édition complète dédiée au téléTP. La sécurité du dispositif (point sensible à distance) donne lieu à une analyse AMDEC et une interprétation de cet aspect dans nos modèles. Une expérimentation située dans un plan d'expériences (Tagushi) a été réalisée sur un téléTP d'automatique.

Keywords: E-Labs, Remote Laboratories, E-Learning, System Engineering, Learning Management System

Report (in French) available in PDF here

Supervised by Dr Arnaud Lelevé and Prof. Patrick Prévot.

Started in end of 2003, defended in January 2007

Communications: [LEL-02, LEL-03, BEN-04, LEL-04a, LEL-04b, BEN-05, LEL-05, BEN-06a, BEN-06b, GRA-06, COQ 07, BEN 08]

Publications: [LEL 08, COQ 08]

2007-2014 PhD: Generic Design of a e-TP configuration tool

Student: Dr Saher ARNOUS

Powered by the technological advances of the “Information and communication sciences and technologies”, the Electronic Laboratory for practical training “ELab” (also known as ELab hands-on training) became an insisting teaching mode especially in the technical and scientific disciplines. However, several ELab modes were emerged, led by the pedagogical variety in engineering sciences: virtual ELab, remote ELab, Local Elab, etc. the two last ELab modes require the use of hardware devices (pedagogical models, measuring devices, robots, etc.). Almost in most cases, those devices need to be reconfigured according to pedagogical objectives. For complex systems, like Automated Production Systems, this reconfiguration process requires technical skills which the instructor does not have systematically. This imposes that a technician should be available, or the usage of the pedagogical platform will be limited to certain number of skilled instructors.

Accordingly, this research aims to facilitate the reconfiguration process of complex systems (particularly the APS) under ELabs. For that, a first survey designated to the users of «AIP-Priméca-RAO», located at the INSA de Lyon, had specified the needs and constraints related to a platform encountering this problem. It has been found that beyond the (re)configuration, a time wasting for the users was detected due to the absence of a common tool for pedagogical resources management. This work fed the design of software tool managing an editorial chain aiming at simplifying creation, edition, assembling, organization, reuse of different resources that can be exploited in an ELab session. This tool is intended as well to improve the autonomy of the instructor during the preparation of an ELab session, by reducing the required time to configure this session. This implies to automate the reconfiguration process of an APS supporting the ELab, and publishing the pedagogical learning scenarios on a Learning Management System (LMS).

In order to validate this design, a prototype has been developed and tested on real cases ELabs.
Subsequently, this tool could be made more generic so that it can serve Elabs of different

Keywords: E-Labs, E-Learning, System Engineering, Learning Management System, Authoring System, Automated Production System

Report (in French) available in PDF here

Supervised by Dr Arnaud Lelevé and Prof. Patrick Prévot.

Started in 2007, defended in Sept 2014

Communications: [ARN1-09a, ARN-09b, LEL-09, ARN-11, ARN-12]

2011 MSc: Sliding-Mode Control of Pneumatic Actuators for Robots and Telerobots

Title: Sliding-Mode Control of Pneumatic Actuators for Robots and Telerobots

Keywords: Haptics, Teleoperation, Pneumatics, Automatic Control

Student: Sean HODGSON

School: University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Period: Feb to July 2011

Followed by : a position in a company in Canada

2012 MSc: Control of a teleoperated haptic pneumatic interface with long hoses

Title: Control of a teleoperated haptic pneumatic interface with long hoses

Keywords: Haptics, Medical Robotics, Pneumatics, Teleoperation

Supervised with : Minh Tu PHAM

Student: Anais BRYGO

Period: Feb to July 2012

Followed by a PhD at Robotics Lab@IIT (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia) in Gena, Italy

2012 MSc: Design and Control of a Multi-degree-of-freedom Pneumatic Robot

Title: Design and Control of a Multi-degree-of-freedom Pneumatic Robot

Keywords: Medical Robotics, Pneumatics

Student: Julio SANDOVAL

Supervised with : Minh Tu PHAM

Period: Feb to July 2012

Followed by : a position in Adeneo as Mecatronics Engineer

2013 MSc: Dual User Haptic Training System

Title: Dual User Haptic Training System

Keywords: Haptics, Hands-on Training, Simulation, , Medical Robotics

Student: Fei LIU

Period: Feb to July 2013

Financed by China Scholarship Council (CSC)

Followed by : 2013-2016 PhD: Dual-user Haptic Training System

2013-2016 PhD: Dual-user Haptic Training System

Student: Dr Fei LIU

More particularly in the medical field, gesture quality is primordial. Professionals have to follow hands-on trainings to acquire a sufficient level of skills in the call of duty. For a decade, computer based simulators have helped the learners in numerous learnings, but these simulations still have to be associated with hands-on trainings on manikins, animals or cadavers, even if they do not always provide a sufficient level of realism and they are costly in the long term. Therefore, their training period has to finish on real patients, which is risky.

Haptic simulators (furnishing an effort feeling) are becoming a more appropriated solution as they can reproduce realist efforts applied by organs onto the tools and they can provide countless prerecorded use cases. However, learning alone on a simulator is not always efficient compared to a fellowship training (or supervised training) where the instructor and the trainee manipulate together the same tools.

Thus, this study introduces an haptic system for supervised hands-on training: the instructor and the trainee interoperate through their own haptic interface. They collaborate either with a real tool dived into a real environment (the tool is handled by a robotic arm), or with a virtual tool/environment. An energetic approach, using in particular the port-Hamiltonian modelling, has been used to ensure the stability and the robustness of the system.

This system has been designed and validated experimentally on a one degree of freedom haptic interface. A comparative study with two other dual-user haptic systems (in simulation) showed the interest of this new architecture for hands-on training. In order to use this system when both users are away from each other, this study proposes some enhancements to cope with constant communication time delays, but they are not optimized yet.

Keywords: Haptics, Simulation, Fellowship Training, Hands-on Training, Dual-User System, Passivity, Comparative Study, Communication Delay, Port-Hamiltonian Modelling

Report available in PDF here

Supervised by Damien Ébérard, Tanneguy Redarce and Arnaud Lelevé

Period: started in October 2013 and defended on 09/22/2016

Financed by China Scholarship Council (CSC)

Realized after: 2013 MSc: Dual User Haptic Training System

Communications: [LIU1-15, LIU2-15, LIU-16]

2014 MSc: Integration of a pneumatic cylinder into a teleoperation chain

Title: Integration of a pneumatic cylinder into a teleoperation chain

Keywords: Haptics, Remote Echography, Medical Robotics

Student: Ibrahim ABDALLAH

Supervised with: Xavier BRUN

Period: Feb to July 2014

2015 MSc: Study and Design of an Epidural Anaesthesia Simulator

Title: Study and Design of a Epidural Anaesthesia Simulator

Keywords: Haptics, Hands-on Training, Simulation, Anaesthetics, Medical Robotics

Student: Pierre-Jean ALES-ROUX

Supervised with: Richard MOREAU

Research project: PERISIM

Period: Feb to July 2015

Financed by IDEFI SAMSEI

Pierre-Jean Alès Roux, Nicolas Herzig, Arnaud Lelevé, Richard Moreau, Christian Bauer. 3D Haptic Rendering of Tissues for Epidural Needle Insertion using an Electro-Pneumatic 7 Degrees of Freedom Device. Oct 2016, Daejeon, South Korea. IEEE, 2016, Proc. of the IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems.. hal-01340723

2016 MSc: Design of Control Laws for a Bimanual Haptic Training Simulator of Epidural Needle Insertion

MSc Internship Supervision

Keywords: Haptics, Hands-on Training, Simulation, Anaesthetics, Medical Robotics

Student: Thibaut SENAC

Supervised with: Richard MOREAU

Research project: PERISIM

Period: Feb to July 2016

Financed by IDEFI SAMSEI

Thibaut Senac, Arnaud Lelevé, Richard Moreau. Control laws for pneumatic cylinder in order to emulate the Loss Of Resistance principle. Proc. of the 20th World Congress of the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC, 2017), Toulouse, France. hal-01506823

2016 MSc: Haptic System Control for a Laparoscopy Simulator

Title: Haptic System Control for a Laparoscopy Simulator

Keywords: Haptics, Hands-on Training, Simulation, Laparoscopy, Medical Robotics

Student: Charles BARNOUIN

Supervised with: Richard MOREAU

Project:: LAPAROSim

Period: Feb to July 2016

Financed by IDEFI SAMSEI

Remarks: Charles has next continued with a PhD Thesis at LIRIS laboratory with Florence Zara and Fabrice Jaillet.

Charles Barnouin, Benjamin De Witte, Richard Moreau, Arnaud Lelevé, Xavier Martin. Cost-Efficient Laparoscopic Haptic Trainer based on Affine Velocity Analysis. Surgetica 2017, Nov 2017, Strasbourg, France. 2017, hal-01563262

2016 PostDoc: Design and Realisation of a Proof of Concept Bench for Greenshield Project

Title: Design and Realization of a Proof of Concept Bench for Greenshield Project

Keywords: Robotics, Spectrometry

Student: Toufik BENTALEB

Supervised with: Bruno MASENELLI from INL lab (Lyon Institute of Nanotechnology ).

Period: July to October 2016

Financed by Green Shield Technologies (GST)

2016-2019 PhD: Design of a training simulator for epidural insertion practice

PhD supervision

Student: Thibaut SENAC

Titre français: développement d'un simulateur d'apprentissage d'un geste d'anesthésiste : la péridurale,

Keywords:: Haptics, Simulation, Hands-on Training, Pneumatic Control

Research project: PERISIM

PhD Director Laurent KRAHENBUHL (École Centrale de Lyon)
Supervisors Richard MOREAU (INSA Lyon) and Arnaud LELEVE

Period: started in September 2016, to be defended in 2019

Financed by Ecole Doctorale EEA Lyon

Summary: Context  : the training of epidural procedure requires numerous trials before being mastered: the success rate is about 80% after 90 attempts, which is not sufficient to perform the gesture on a patient. Yet, the medical students do not have so many opportunities to train on this gesture. Moreover, manikins, animals and cadavers are not sufficiently realistic to train oneself effectively.
The objective of this PhD work is to design an haptic simulator reproducing the "Loss of Resistance" (LOR) mechanism which helps the anesthetist to know whether the needle is arrived at the rigth place (i.e. epidural space) before injecting some anesthetics or realizing a biopsy.
Method : we will control simultaneously an haptic interface which will guide the needle, considering a fictive patient parameters, to reproduce the needle insertion, and also a pneumatic cylinder which will reproduce the feelings provided by the LOR syringe. Various control laws will be tested (position and stiffness backstepping, sliding mode, hybrid system, ...) in order to reproduce the real operation as faithfully as possible.

Publications: click here

2017 MSc: Robot Assisted Catheterization in Endovascular Surgery

Keywords: Endovascular Surgery, Medical Robotics

Student: Iris NAUDIN

Supervised with: Richard MOREAU

Master: Surgical Sciences

Project:: RACES

Period: 2016-2017

Remarks: Iris won the award Antonin Poncet 2016-17 for this work.

2017-2020 PhD: Collaborative Hands-on Training on haptic simulators

Student: Angel LICONA

Keywords:: Haptics, Simulation, Hands-on Training, Dual-User

Supervised with Minh Tu PHAM (director)

Period: started in January 2017, defended in March 2020

Financed by CONACYT Mexico

Summary :
Haptic simulators usually provide solutions to autonomously train oneself without any danger, typically to perform repetitive attempts to get familiar or to improve oneself on a given gesture. It can correspond to usual gestures to get used to or for rare and difficult cases which could be encountered in real life but which need to be mastered, more particularly under stress conditions. Nevertheless, for difficult cases, it remains useful for a trainer to guide the trainees’ motions, while keeping the advantages of haptic simulators, for a more accurate and efficient training. Classically, a trainer can directly guide the hands of a trainee to perform a correct motion. Yet, this ”four hand fellowship” does not permit for the trainee to feel and dose the correct level of force to apply on their device in case of interaction of their tool with its environment as the efforts are shared between both persons.
Dual-user systems have been designed in a first approach as a mean for two operators to cooperate remotely on a shared task. To do so, these systems extend the master-slave classical teleoperation architecture by adding a second master manipulated by a second operator. In fact, a dual-user system can be seen as a particular case of more generic multiple master/single slave (MMSS) teleoperation systems. The main concept with dual-user systems is that the users share the slave control according to a dominance factor (α ∈ [0, 1]). When α = 1 (respectively 0), the trainer (respectively trainee) has full control Chebbi et al.on the trainee’s (respectively trainer’s) device and on the slave. When 0 < α < 1, both users share the slave control with a dominance (over the other user) which is function of α. According to the architectures found in the literature, the effect of α on the force feedback provided to the users differs. Their usage has then been enlarged from cooperation to training purposes by Chebbi et al. [1] Indeed, dual-user systems are a practicable solution to the problem of rendering the four hand fellowship in the haptic training: it can reproduce this important force information simultaneously to both users, each one interacting with their own haptic interface. Nonetheless, solutions found in the literature do not permit a clear force training (during demonstrations and evaluations) nor they enable the addition of other trainees in the same simulation without dramatically increasing the complexity of the architecture.
This work is based on the ESC Energy-based Dual-User architecture designed by a former PhD student from the Robotics Working Group of Ampere laboratory: Fei Liu [2]. This architecture enabled the aforementioned force training for a one-degree-of-freedom system. This work has been extended to n dof at first for same haptic devices (joint control) and then to simulators where the slave device has different kinematics compared to the master ones (cartesian control). An adaptive mechanism to permit to automatically change the value of α and set the authority back to the trainer when the trainee performs a bad/dangerous gesture, had been designed by Fei Liu. In this work, we enhanced it by decreasing the number of parameters from 3 to 1 which makes it easier for the trainer to tune it according to the current task. This architecture has also been expanded to host several trainees for parallel demonstrations and public evaluations, with a linear raise of complexity in the architecture’s design. At last, a first user feedback has been performed to evaluate the pedagogical usefulness but the experiments were not conclusive. A new experimental protocol is proposed.

[1] Chebbi, B.; Lazaroff, D.; Bogsany, F.; Liu, P. X.; Ni, L. & Rossi, M. Design and implementation of a collaborative virtual haptic surgical training system IEEE International Conference Mechatronics and Automation, 2005, 2005, 1, 315-320 Vol. 1
[2] Dual-user haptic training system, PhD thesis, defended on 09/22/2016 at INSA Lyon, France

2021-2024 Design of a Haptic Simulator To Train on Ventricular Puncture

Student: Benjamin DELBOS

Keywords:: Haptics, Simulation, Hands-on Training

Supervised with Richard MOREAU and Rémi CHALARD

Period: started in September 2021, to be defended in 2024

Financed by INSA Lyon

Scientific field and context:
This subject is in the field of medical robotics, more precisely haptic simulation for learning medical gestures, and responds directly to the expectation of the High Authority of Health: "Never the first time on a patient".

Ventricular drainage is commonly performed in neurosurgery departments or in the emergency
room. It consists of inserting a catheter into the brain, using a needle, until it reaches the frontal horn to drain cerebrospinal fluid for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes [1]. The clinical routine is to insert this needle blindly. The only indication of success is the sudden loss of resistance when the ventricle is reached [2].Currently, it is fundamental that a neurosurgeon be able to perform this gesture "by hand".Indeed, the assistance systems (e.g. ROSA robot [7]) are unusual and expensive. However, the learning of
this gesture is only performed by companionship: there is no effective simulator for training in this type of surgery (neither anatomical mannequins [3] nor current Virtual Reality simulators [4-6]). However, the risks of causing serious after-effects for the patient are high.

Objectives of the thesis:
The main objective consists in designing and prototyping a haptic simulator [8] for the training of the ventricular drainage gesture in neurosurgical operations. The haptic interface manipulated by the learner will be specific to this gesture in order to reproduce conditions close to reality. The gestures performed during real operations will be analyzed and processed in order to propose a tool for a fast and objective evaluation of gestures during simulations.
The simulator will have to be able to customize the training sessions based on data specific to each patient (preoperative MRI images) to reduce the risk of errors during the surgical procedure.

Scientific problems:

  • Analyze and model the interactions between the surgeon and the patient in order to be able to transcribe them on a haptic simulator [9].
  • Determine the man/robot synergy allowing the most faithful reproduction of reality based on the principle of comanipulation [10].
  • Virtual reproduction of the patient's anatomy from MRI images and integration of instrument trajectory information based on real-time robot sensors [11].

Expected contributions:

  • There is currently no such simulator.
  • Realize this simulator by simultaneously integrating: 1/ specific robotic interface, 2/ real time MRI image simulation and 3/ augmented reality, is unprecedented in this context.
  • Integrate patient-specific exercises adds a strong constraint on the models used.

Research program and proposed scientific approach:
During the drainage, the surgeon will use the shape of the skull and in particular the position of the patient's nose and ears as anatomical landmarks. The first part of the project will focus on thedesign of a realistic skull/ear/nose combination. Indeed, during each ventricular puncture, the position of the hole through which the surgeon will insert the needle plays a major role in the
success of the procedure. In practice, the surgeon relies on the positioning of the ears and nose to choose the location of the cranial drilling. These organs also serve as a reference point when the needle is inserted. Finally, he uses the patient's skull as a support point during the procedure. For all these reasons, it seems necessary to design physical cranial reproductions allowing the
simulator to gain in realism. Different sizes of skulls can be developed for pediatric surgery. It will also be necessary to use tools similar to those used in the operating room in order to accentuate the immersion of the simulator. A needle substitute will have to be mounted on the robot and allow the same movements as the real needle.

It will be necessary to develop control laws on a Haption robot in order to realistically reproduce the sensation of needle penetration [12] through the brain and the ventricle. One can refer to the work of Ma. de los Angeles ALAMILLA-DANIEL on joint puncture [13] and to the various tests already carried out on the laboratory's test platform. This stage will require, among other things, a bibliographical study of the mechanical properties of the brain in order to be able to reproduce them with adapted and innovative control laws, always with the aim of pushing the realism of the haptic simulator to its paroxysm.

The third theme will deal with training and feedback. It will be necessary to work on the creation of an augmented universe allowing to navigate in the brain and to see the ventricle from the MRI images of the patients in which it will be necessary to be able to locate the trajectory of the needle [14]. This step is crucial in addressing the challenges of training new surgeons in this surgical
procedure. Indeed, the creation of an augmented environment allowing the observation of the brain following different MRI slices and showing the needle trajectory during ventricular puncture training will facilitate the feedback of the expert surgeon accompanying the novice. It will also allow the learner to contextualize and visualize his mistakes or success in a learning process.

Finally, it will be necessary to work on the feedback given to the learner following his training. To do this, it will be necessary to classify the operations of novices and experts in order to better identify the difficulties of the gesture and personalize the training of each novice. This theme could be based on some of the laboratory work that has already addressed this subject. Indeed, in the
context of the PhD work of M. SENAC [15], different machine learning methods have been implemented to analyze the gestures of novices and experts. The objective was to determine the characteristics of the gestures performed in order to highlight the differences between experts and novices and thus offer novices personalized training with dedicated exercises. Thus supervised and unsupervised methods were implemented and compared in order to find the most appropriate
methods in our case. This work already followed on from the work carried out in the laboratory as
part of Mrs CIFUENTES' doctoral thesis [16], which focused on the determination of objective
criteria for the analysis of medical procedures. Based on previous work, this approach will allow us
to optimize the learning curves of learners with personalized and targeted feedback.

[1] Toma AK, Camp S, Watkins LD, Grieve J, Kitchen ND. External ventricular drain insertion
accuracy: is there a need for change in practice? Neurosurgery 2009;65(6):1197–200.
[2] Banerjee, P. Pat, et al. "Accuracy of ventriculostomy catheter placement using a head-and hand-
tracked high-resolution virtual reality simulator with haptic feedback." Journal of neurosurgery
107.3 (2007) : 515- 521
[3] Zhuang Jianghui, He Bingwei, et al. "Development and Application of a Simulated Puncture
Model for Lateral Ventricle". China Medical Equipment (2018), 33 (5), 32-35
[4] Manchester, Nigel John, and Nigel W. John. "A vrml simulator for ventricular catheterization.",
Eurographics UK, 1999.
[5] Luciano, Cristian, et al. "Second generation haptic ventriculostomy simulator using the
ImmersiveTouchTM system." Studies in health technology and informatics 119 (2005): 343.
[6] Zhongyi Chen, Yuqing Liu, et al. "Application of mixed reality-based lateral ventricle puncture
training system in medical education training" Electronic Journal of Trauma and Emergency (2019).
[7] Lefranc M, Capel C, Pruvot-Occean AS, Fichten A, Desenclos C, Toussaint P, Le Gars D, Peltier J.
Frameless robotic stereotactic biopsies: a consecutive series of 100 cases. J Neurosurg. 2015
Feb;122(2):342-52. doi:10.3171/2014.9. JNS14107. Epub 2014 Nov 7. PMID: 25380111.
[8] Gonenc, B. and Gurocak, H. (2012b). Virtual needle insertion with haptic feedback using a
hybrid actuator with DC servomotor and MR-brake with Hall-effect sensor. Mechatronics,
[9] A. Okamura, C. Simone, and M. O’Leary. "Force Modeling for Needle Insertion into Soft Tissue."
IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, vol. 51, no. 10, pp. 1707–1716, Oct. 2004.
[10] Morel, G. and Szewczyk, J. and Vitrani, M.A. (2012). Comanipulation. Robotique Medicale,
Hermes, publisher. Pages 343-392.
[11] Alex Tsui, Devin Fenton, Phong Vuong, Joel Hass, Patrice Koehl, Nina Amenta, David Coeurjolly,
Charles Decarli & Owen Carmichael (2013). « Globally Optimal Cortical Surface Matching With
Exact Landmark Correspondence ». Information Processing in Medical Imaging, 28 juin 2013,
Asilomar, California (États-Unis), pp. 487-498. HAL : hal-00974838
[12] Thibault Senac, Arnaud Lelevé, Richard Moreau, Laurent Krähenbühl, Florent Sigwalt, et al..
Designing an accurate and customizable epiduralanesthesia haptic simulator. 2019 IEEEInternational Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), IEEE, May 2019, Montreal, Canada. ?
10.1109/ICRA.2019.8794199?. ?hal-02170879?
[13] Ma de los Angeles Alamilla Daniel, Richard Moreau, Redarce Tanneguy. Development of haptic
simulator for practicing the intraarticular needle injection under echography *. EMBC, Jul 2020,
Montreal, Canada. pp.4713-4716, ?10.1109/EMBC44109.2020.9175728?. ?hal-02947141?
[14] Raabe, C., Fichtner, J., Beck, J., Gralla, J., & Raabe, A. (2018). Revisiting the rules for freehand
ventriculostomy: a virtual reality analysis, Journal of Neurosurgery JNS, 128(4), 1250-1257.
Retrieved Dec 9, 2020, from
[15] T. Sénac, A. Lelevé, R. Moreau, L. Krähenbühl, F. Sigwalt and C. Bauer, "Skill assessment of an
epidural anesthesia using the PeriSIM simulator," in IEEE Transactions on Medical Robotics and
Bionics, doi:10.1109/TMRB.2020.3048247.
[16] Jenny Cifuentes-Quintero, Minh Tu Pham, Pierre Boulanger, Richard Moreau, Flavio Prieto.
Towards a classification of surgical skills using affine velocity. IET Science Measurement and
Technology, Institution of Engineering and Technology, 2018, 12 (4), pp.548 - 553. ?10.1049/iet-

Dissemination of knowledge

Some R&D Student Project Supervision

2012 Design and Control of an Inspection Robotic Arm for Train Infrastructure Inspection

R&D Student Project Supervision

French title: Conception et pilotage d’un bras d’inspection photographique pour le contrôle des ouvrages d’art de la ligne TGV Paris Bordeaux

Team: Kelly HEUZE et Nicolas BARRET

Supervised with : Minh Tu PHAM

Industrial Partner: Structure et Réhabilitation

Related granted Research Project : INTELO

2012 Realization of a Computer Based Simulation for Validating PLC Programming for Smoke Extraction in case of Tunnel Fire

R&D Student Project Supervision
Title: Realization of a Computer Based Simulation for Validating PLC Programming for Smoke Extraction in case of Tunnel Fire

Title: Mise en œuvre d’un outil de simulation numérique pour la validation des programmes automates de désenfumage des tunnels en cas d’incendie

Supervised with : Xavier BRUN

Project: : GTIE

Team: Nicolas GALLAND, Andy PAJANI

Principal: Enfrasys GTIE

2013 Design and Validation by Simulation of Photo Shooting Strategies for Automated Infrastructure Scanning

R&D Student Project Supervision

French title: Conception et validation par la simulation de stratégies de prises de vue automatisées d'intrados d'ouvrages d'arts,

Team: Emilien HAMEAU , Laurent KOFFEL

Principal: Structure et Réhabilitation

Related granted Research Project : INTELO

2014 Design of Industrial Automation of Urban Farm FUL

Title: Design of Industrial Automation of Urban Farm FUL

French title: Conception des automatismes d'une ferme urbaine

Team: Marie MOULIN, Arthur NAULIN

Supervised with : Minh Tu PHAM

Industrial Partner: Ferme FUL

Associated Project: FUL1 & 2

2014 MRI Teleoperation Needle Insertion Device

R&D Student Project Supervision

Title: MRI Teleoperation Needle Insertion Device

Student: Deanne DURWARD from University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Supervised with : Minh Tu PHAM

2015 Development of exercizes with Haptic Feedback in Virtual Environments to train the Cognitive Functions of Medical Students

R&D Student Project Supervision

Title: Development of exercizes with Haptic Feedback in Virtual Environments to train the Cognitive Functions of Medical Students

Student: Nemanja BABIC from Ottawa University, Ontario, Canada

Principal: SAMSEI

2015 Robot Assisted Rehabilitation of the Lower Limb using an Haptic Interface

R&D Student Project Supervision

French title: Développement d’un banc pour entraînement aux procédures laparoscopiques avec retour haptique

Team: Maëlle AGBALE

Supervised with : Minh Tu PHAM and Mahdi TAVAKOLI (from Telerobotic and Biorobotic Systems Lab - University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada)

2016 Brain-Computer Interface in Robotics

R&D Student Project Supervision
Title: Brain-Computer Interface in Robotics

Team: Alexandru DJAISIBAEV from University of Bacau, Romania

Supervised with /strong>: Minh Tu PHAM

2016 Design of a Hands-on Training Haptic Simulator for Laparoscopic Gesture Learning

R&D Student Project Supervision

French title: Développement d’un banc pour entraînement aux procédures laparoscopiques avec retour haptique

Team: Oscar PIVARD

Supervised with : Richard MOREAU

Principal: SAMSEI

Project:: LAPAROSim

2016 Prototyping for the FUL: Ferme Urbaine Lyonnaise

R&D Student Project Supervision
Title: Prototyping for the Lyon Urban Farm

Team: 8 students, 5 supervisors from various INSA Teaching Departments and Research Laboratories

Principal: Ferme FUL

Associated Project: FUL1 & 2

2016 Stiffness Control of a Pneumatic Remote Echography Probe

R&D Student Project Supervision
Title: Stiffness Control of a Pneumatic Remote Echography Probe

French title: Commande en raideur d'une sonde de télé-échographie pneumatique

Student: Fabrice GATWAZA from Polytech Orléans

Supervised with : Xavier BRUN

Associated Project: SoHappy

2017 Design of a force measurement tool applied to a joint infiltration syringe

R&D Student Project Supervision

Title: Design of a force measurement tool applied to a joint infiltration syringe

French title: conception d’un outil de mesure des efforts appliqués sur une seringue d’infiltration articulaire

Students: Ana Ludeña Martínez and Carolina Navarro Valero

Supervised with : Richard Moreau

Associated Project: Sparte

2017 Design of a tool for measuring the forces applied to a torquer in the context of endovascular operations

R&D Student Project Supervision

Title: Design of a tool for measuring the forces applied to a torquer in the context of endovascular operations

French title: conception d’un outil de mesure des efforts appliqués sur un torqueur dans le
cadre d’opérations endovasculaires

Student: Emna Walha

Supervised with : Richard Moreau

Associated Project: RACES


Some projects with industrialists

This list illustrates projects conducted at Ampere lab, in response and/or in collaboration with industrialists.

2017-2021 Green Shield : Pesticide Free Robotized Pest Control in Agriculture

This project has just been granted by ANR. It officially starts in October 2017.
It involves Ampère, BF2I, FEMTO-ST and INL laboratories and Green Shield Technology (GST) start-up.
It aims at designing and prototyping a mobile robot to detect and kill pests in fields during 42 months.

The use of pesticides appears natural and exclusive to us because our civilization has relied on them since antiquity. Pest damage results in economic production losses to the agricultural industry, estimated from 28 to 50% (in Africa and Asia) of annual productions. Therefore, the European Union uses approximately 360 million kg of pesticides per year for
agricultural and horticultural tasks. However, pesticide application methods are inefficient (only 0.3% of sprayed pesticides from aerial application comes in contact with the target pest). All this led to alarming consequences in public health, the environment, and economically. In 2003, environmental and economic costs associated with pesticide use were
estimated to total approximately 10 billion dollars per year in the US.
In its “Ecophyto” plan, French government has decided to reduce by 50% the use of pesticides by 2018. Unfortunately, alternatives to pesticides being too scarce, the objective has been postponed to 2025. So far, no purely technological and versatile method has been developed to replace pesticides. Detection techniques still do not take advantage of spectral techniques to detect pests (they detect sick plants, so too late). For instance, in 2012, some robots have collaborated with humans in vineyards to decide where to spray with various levels of autonomy. Results showed 90% accuracy of grape cluster detection leading to 30% reduction in the use of pesticides [1] . Some studies introduce ways to detect pests on leaves
with a camera, but due to the challenges of on-site detection, most of them relied on scanning under highly controlled light conditions.

Greenshield Project aims at reducing the use of pesticides by developing a robotic module to be embedded on a terrestrial vehicle (mobile robot, farming tractor, ...) to fight against crop pests (invertebrates, diseases, weeds). This module will autonomously detect pests and destroy them with a laser. When mounted on mobile robots patrolling
through crop fields, it will scan the plants and collect accurate data regarding pests that will be used to optimize the action of robots. This new means of fighting will settle a new sustainable paradigm of pest control to better combat them.

In this project, the method of targeting pests for detection and destruction has been patented by the firm Green Shield Technology which will industrialize the results of this project.

External information:

2016 Greenshield Proof Of Concept

This project aimed at designing a bench of Proof of Concept to demonstrate the viability of the process proposed by Green Shield Technology (GST) company to detect and kill pests in fields. It permitted to conclude positively and led to the ANR Greenshield project starting in 2017.

I participated to the setting up and to the realization of this project.

In collaboration with BF2I, FEMTO-ST and INL laboratories.

6 researchers, 1 research engineer, 1 technician and 1 postdoct student (see {PostDoc 2016 Bentaleb} were involved from June to December 2016.

2012-2015 INTELO: RObotic Inspection of Train and Road Bridges

INTELO means "INspection TElévisuelle des Ouvrages": Remote Inspection of train and road bridges.
It was a project co-founded by Région Auvergne Rhône Alpes with European funds (FEDER).
It involved the firms

2014 & 2016 FUL1 & FUL2

I participated to the preparation, the coordination and the supervision (for mechatronic tasks) of 2 projects (in collaboration with BF2I, Bio Sciences department, Lyon Center of Energetics and Thermics (CETHIL) and Mechanical Engineering Department:

  • 2014: Automating hydroponic cultures in urban greenhouses (4 students)
  • 2016: Optimisation for industrialization of an automated vertical conveyor (3 students)

Reviews for scientific conferences and journals

A sum-up of the reviews performed since 2011 is visible on my PUBLONS profile.