Control Seminar

Efficient and Responsive Behavior Design by Selective Evolutionary Generation

Amor MenezesResearch FellowUniversity of Michigan, Department of Aerospace Engineering

This talk introduces Selective Evolutionary Generation Systems (SEGS), which are a class of self-reproducing systems that are useful for tackling a generalization of the standard global optimization problem known as behavior design. Instead of an optimizer, a SEGS produces, on a search space, a probability density function called the behavior. The generalization depends on a parameter referred to as the level of selectivity, which restores traditional optimization when the parameter equals infinity. The motivation for this generalization is twofold: traditional off-line global optimization is unresponsive to perturbations of the objective function, and on-line optimization methods that are more responsive can be computationally expensive. This talk explains how a SEGS produces rational behavior via a Markov Chain Monte Carlo method to obtain both efficient optimizer search as well as responsiveness. The canonical genetic algorithm with fitness proportional selection and the (1+1) evolutionary strategy are particular cases of a SEGS. The SEGS method is illustrated through the evolution of flapping wing gaits in a way that is responsive to changes in flight conditions.
Amor Menezes is a Research Fellow at the University of Michigan, where he recently completed his Ph.D. degree as an NSERC Fellow and Michigan Teaching Fellow in the department of Aerospace Engineering. He received a Master of Science in Engineering degree from the University of Michigan as a Milo E. Oliphant Fellow in 2006, also in Aerospace Engineering, and graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Mechanical Engineering with Distinction and Dean's Honors in 2005. Dr. Menezes’s research interests include the fields of self-reproducing systems, stochastic optimization, evolutionary computation, robotics, artificial intelligence, intelligent control, feedback control of dynamic systems, game theory, and synthetic biology.

Sponsored by

Eaton, Ford, GM, Toyota, Whirlpool and the MathWorks