Robot Manipulation: What has been achieved and what remains to be done?

Organizers: Erol Sahin and Siddhartha Srinivasa
IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS) 2014
Full day Workshop, 14 September 2014, Sunday


Research on robotic manipulation has achieved important theoretical and technical advances in the last 50 years. Robot manipulators in factories have become a key element of industrial manufacturing, and are widely considered to be a success story for robotics. However, there remain several challenges in extending this success beyond factory floors. Successful demonstrations in specific tasks have not yet yielded general and integrated manipulation systems that can operate lifelong in uncertain environments with and around humans.

The objective of the workshop was to discuss, understand and underline the key challenges inherent in robot manipulation that prevented its transition towards becoming a technology. Towards this end, the workshop hosted review and research presentations, and a closing panel discussion.

As part of the workshop, we have also compiled a set of seminal works suggested by our invited speakers.

Title Speaker
Opening Siddhartha Srinivasa and Erol Sahin
Invited talk: What has been achieved and what remains to be done: Much and much. Matt Mason, CMU
Invited talk: Minimalist Design, where Hardware gets Hard William T. Townsend, Barrett Tech.
Invited talk: How to think about robot hands and grasping Robert D. Howe, Harvard U.
Invited talk: Manipulation planning: past, present and future. Tomás Lozano-Pérez, MIT
Invited talk: Learning and Optimization in Robotic Manipulation Pieter Abbeel, UC Berkeley
Multi-Robot Grasp Planning for Sequential Assembly Operations Mehmet Dogar, MIT
Kinodynamic Reconfiguration Planning with Physics Simulations Jennifer King, CMU
Improving Path Execution in Deformable Environments Using Reactive Cost-space Control Calder Phillips-Grafflin, WPI
Planning Grasp Strategies That Exploit Environmental Constraints Oliver Brock, TU Berlin
Geometry-Based Manipulation through Robotic Caging Yusuke Maeda, Yokohama National U.
Generalizing autonomously segmented complex trajectories based on learned task-specific environment metrics Simon Hangl, U. of Innsbruck
DLO manipulation planning with contacts Olivier Roussel, LAAS
Uncalibrated Visual Servoing as a Complement for Small Object Manipulation in 3D Perception Robotic Systems Oscar Ramirez, U. of Alberta
Tight Coupling between Manipulation and Perception using SLAM Benzun Pious Wisely Babu, WPI
Improvement through Interaction in Robot Manipulation Erol Sahin, Middle East Technical U. & CMU

Program Committee

Sahar El-khoury, EPFL
Tamim Asfour, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Giorgio Metta, Italian Institute of Technology
Mark Lee, University of Aberystwyth
Alexander Stoytchev, Iowa State University
Aaron Dollar, Yale University
Heni Ben Amor, Georgia Tech
Dmitry Berenson, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Oliver Brock, Technical University of Berlin


Organization of this workshop is supported by the IEEE RAS Mobile Manipulation Technical Committee and the Marie Curie IOF project titled Towards Better Robot Manipulation: Improvement through Interaction (FP7-PEOPLE-IOF-2013-628854).