Keynote Talks

(In alphabetical order of authors)


Svetlana Avramov-Zamurović
United States Naval Academy, USA
Tuesday, June 10, 2015, 11:00-11:30, Kamin Room

Displacement Sensor for Detecting Sub-Micrometer Motion

Development of new reliable sensors to measure sub-micrometer displacement of moving objects is required by continuous size reduction of state-of-the-art nano-scale devices. The most challenging sensor design requirements are nano application dependent on shape, size of the area for sensor placement and electrical connections. The active sensing area has to be created only by the sensor itself and it cannot incorporate the moving object. Common nano applications involve objects that cannot tolerate additional weight from electrical connections and/or are made from materials that cannot be electrically charged. These limitations lead to the design of a very simple sensor that has a small footprint.
There are several displacement measuring methods. The classical method measures the change in capacitance due to an object moving in the fringing electrical field created by sensor electrodes. Extremely small displacements can also be measured using light sensors with high resolutions, but the measurement system is complex and the resolution is limited by the wavelength of the light used for the measurements.
In this talk measuring the displacement of a moving micro platform is explored in and the prototype of a displacement sensor using a comb pattern for a Micro Electro Mechanical System (MEMS) nanopostioning application development and testing are presented. A sensitivity of 0.001 pF/μm, was achieved while measuring the peak-to-peak motion with a distance between the sensor and the nanopositioner of several micrometers. The active sensitive area of the MEMS sensor was 0.3 mm² demonstrating a small footprint.


Karsten Berns
Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, GERMANY
Tuesday, June 10, 2015, 10:30-11:00, Kamin Room

Challenges and Solutions in Agricultural Robotics 

In the year 2050, it is estimated that the world population will be around 9 billon people. Based on limited land and the yearly increase in the number of natural disasters destroying fields, expert expect that the food production must be increased nearly by a factor of two compared to the state of today. For solving this problem, the automation and optimization of agricultural processes must be extended. Agricultural robotics plays a key role for this purpose.
At the moment, automation in farming starts with agricultural vehicles like tractors, sprayers, or harvesters, which are equipped with automatic guidance systems.  Based on global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) like the NAVSTAR-GPS and the use of terrestrial correction signals to improve the localization quality up to ±2 cm, simple navigation tasks could be autonomously performed. All these GNSS-based systems have to deal with drawbacks like the localization robustness, missing collision avoidance modules, or the inability to follow existing structures such as orchards, plant rows, and windrows. For cost reduction and for increasing the productivity, driving without a human operator will be necessary. Therefore, agricultural vehicles must be safe – especially in relation to humans.
In the presentation, first the state of the art will be given. Based on the main challenges in agricultural vehicles, the presentation will focus on related research results which have been achieved in the Robotics Research Lab of the University of Kaiserslautern during the last years. Path planning and control methods following structures like windrows will be introduced. Obstacle detection and environmental description algorithms will be discussed according to typical agricultural applications. Safe and reliable operations are essential for autonomous agricultural vehicles. Based on application examples it will be shown how such non-functional features can be fulfilled. The presentation ends with a discussion of some detection methods used to analyze the state of the crops. 



Roberto Bruschi
University of Genoa, ITALY
Wednesday, June 10, 2015, 10:30-11:00, Kamin Room

Energy Efficiency in the Future Internet

According to major Telecom operators worldwide, there is a significant need for Future Internet devices and network infrastructures to be more energy-efficient, scalable and flexible, in order to realize the extremely virtualized and optimized networks needed to effectively and efficiently support a very large number of heterogeneous user-led services. In the computing world, an important recent trend has been the move to energy proportionality, i.e., the goal of having energy expenditure in proportion to the instantaneous (rather than the peak) computational load. This has motivated the adoption of virtualization and cloud computing as methods to deliver software services. These developments save power in computation, but increase the load on datacenter networks and on the Internet that supplies them their data. Thus, the goal of energy proportionality has been extended to datacenter networks and the Internet at large. However, the complex interactions between the energy consumed by virtualized servers, the server farms on which they execute, the datacenter networks that interconnect them, and the wider network from which users access services and data, require a holistic approach to energy efficiency, capable of embracing many different aspects and basic strategies of current ICT and network technologies, where the ultimate overall goal should be the rational usage of all physical resources. In this perspective, energy efficiency (with respect to a non-optimized exploitation of ICT equipment) may be viewed as an indicator of the "health" of the overall computing and networking ecosystem. It reflects the extent of exploitation of computing, storage, and communications hardware capabilities to the degree needed to support the current workload generated by applications at the required Quality of Service/Experience (QoS/QoE) level. In this respect, flexibility and programmability in the usage of physical resources (obviously including the network) come naturally onto the scene as instruments that allow optimal dynamic resource allocation strategies to be really implemented in practice. The goal of such optimization can actually be energy efficiency, but it will be achieved under dynamic adaptation to the quality requirements imposed by running applications.
The talk will explore the state of the art in energy-efficiency in networking and datacenters, and the integration of green technologies in the framework of Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV), as a sustainable path toward the Future Internet stemming from the experience of the European projects ECONET (FP7 ) and INPUT (H2020).


Tom Kazmierski and Matthew Walker
University of Southampton, UNITED KINGDOM
Wednesday, June 10, 2015, 11:00-11:30, Kamin Room

A vision for the many-core dream

Recent many-core architectures, that is, architectures with hundreds or more cores, suffer from a number of fundamental problems. For one, a one-hundred ARM core system would not fit physically on a SoC that powers a mobile or a tablet device. Many current many-core prototypes use existing ISA cores that have been developed for traditional multi-core processors. However, for a scaleable, ultra-low-energy many-core architecture to be successful new designs are needed that would result in smaller and simpler cores. Additionally, current parallel software is not parallel enough. Most applications running on smartphones do not make effective use of the two or four cores that are available on smartphone processors.  In a many-core system, networking issues become difficult to solve due to the need to provide data communication and resource sharing between hundreds of cores. Not only there is a huge number of wires needed between the cores themselves to allow data transfers, but complex switching is required which uses a considerable amount of space and also the communication network consumes a large proportion of the overall energy of the processor.
This talk will investigate the potential of massively parallel architectures with simple, ultra-low energy cores to address the above challenges. In future many-core processor systems some of the benefits offered by small processors might become more significant and outweigh the disadvantages if implemented judiciously.
The talk will discuss an idea to design and implement many processors with simple data networks between the cores. Instead of being standalone processors, each small worker is a coprocessor (application specific accelerator) working in conjunction with a standard multi-core system, employing just a few larger cores.  Specially designed programs can make use of the application specific coprocessors and off-load tasks to them. Existing operating systems and software can still run without any modifications on the main multi-core processor but programs can utilise the many-core fabric for computing certain tasks in a more energy efficient way, possibly at a higher performance. 


Dejan Popović
University of Belgrade, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, SERBIA
Wednesday, June 10, 2015, 12:00-12:30, Kamin Room

Integration of robot assistants and electrical stimulation for neurorehabilitation

This presentation is about new personal robot assistants which allow a significantly improved outcome of rehabilitation of humans with upper limbs impairment. These robots provide an immediate hand/arm functioning, but also result with therapeutic (carry-over) effects. These systems contribute to the functioning of patients after central nervous system having paretic or paralyzed upper limbs because they provide a desired controlled haptic assistance that is integrated into the preserved sensory-motor systems. These systems are hybrids: they integrate a multichannel functional electrical stimulation providing the grasp/ release and the robot assistant. The hybrid system increases the motivation to exercise, activate afferent nerves and contribute to the changes in the cortical excitability and cortical plasticity. The modularity allows the use of components instead of the whole system based on the level of impairment. These systems implement control that integrates learning from examples allowing a clinician to set the level of assistance during the treatment; thereby, the treatment can be adjusted to fit to the level of impairment. Humans after a stroke are the major beneficiaries from the system but other disabled humans could also benefit (e.g., CP, tetraplegia, surgery recovery). The performance of the system was validated in case series in the clinical environment.


Jasmina Vujić
Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, California, USA
Wednesday, June 10, 2015, 11:30-12:00, Kamin Room

Nuclear Power in the World: Dusk or Dawn

The first commercial nuclear power plants were built in the early 1960s. The new construction starts peaked in the late 1970s. Two accidents, the 1979 Three Mile Island accident in the US and the 1986 Chernobyl accident in USSR, led to phase-outs, slowdowns and moratoriums in several countries, including the USA. Many predicted that nuclear power is coming to its dusk. However, the need for base-load power and lower electricity prices, excellent performance of operating plants,  and worry about fossil fuel emissions and climate change, led to a nuclear revival in early 2000s. The recession of 2007-2008, the focus on renewable sources of electricity, and the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi accident in Japan have resulted in slowdowns, moratoriums and phase-outs in some western countries. For example, Germany decided to close eight nuclear power plants and Japan ordered shutdown of 48 plants for inspection. Many predicted a new dusk for nuclear power. Four years after the Fukushima Daiichi accident and seven years after the last large world recession, the question reminds: what is to be expected regarding the nuclear power in the future – a dusk or new down?
This paper will review the current status of commercial nuclear power plants in the world, the progress in the advanced reactor designs and small modular reactors, the environmental footprint of nuclear power plants as compared to other sources of electricity, and the issues related to spent fuel and safety of future reactors. Geopolitical strategies in the energy field will be addressed, as well as non-proliferation and regional energy security. 



Invited Talks

(In alphabetical order of authors)


Olga Borić-Lubecke
University of Hawaii at Manoa, EE Department, 2540 Dole St, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
Victor Lubecke
University of Hawaii at Manoa, EE Department, 2540 Dole St, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
Wednesday, June 10, 2015, 8:30-8:50, Room 1C

Wireless Technology for Physiological Monitoring

Recent advances in wireless communications and sensor technologies have opened doors towards wireless physiological monitoring. In this presentation we will discuss methods of noninvasive physiological sensing, and its applications from medicine to clean energy. Taking advantage of wireless technology advances, Doppler radar physiological sensing has a potential to provide a compact, low cost platform for cardiopulmonary measurements. Application examples include sleep medicine, wearable systems, and occupancy sensing.


Vesna Crnojević Bengin
Faculty of Technical Sciences, University of Novi Sad, SERBIA
Tuesday, June 9, 2015, 15:00-15:20, Room 1C

Near-Zero Metamaterials and Their Application to the Design of Microstrip Filters (with a short excursion to the acoustical domain)

Metamaterial theory and techniques have passed almost 15 years of evolution. One of the established outcomes of this development are so called Near-Zero (NZ) metamaterials which exhibit a new physical effect of achieving zero value of propagation coefficient at non-zero frequencies. The talk will provide insights into various types of NZ metamatreials and show that microwave filters based on this new physical effect can have resonators much shorter  than the guided wavelength, thus paving the the way for micro-miniaturization of  filters.
A combined approach to filter design will be presented which uses both the conventional filter design technique as well as the metamaterial approach to filter design. It will be shown how NZ propagation can be obtained in quasi-TEM Circuits and some concrete NZ microstrip filters will be presented. Finally, the concept will be extended beyond electromagnetic waves and into the acoustical domain where NZ propagation yields some very interesting phenomena.


Marco Ceccarelli and Giuseppe Carbone
University of Cassino and South Latium, Cassino, ITALY
Tuesday, June 9, 2015, 8:30-8:50, Room 1B

New Challenges in Service Robotics

Service robotics expands successfully applications of robotic systems in more and more non-industrial areas. New tasks are affordable by robotic systems when the peculiarities of the applications are well understood not only for technological developments but also for users’ acceptance and handsome operation. Examples of emerging challenging interests are discussed in this keynote paper as referring to robot applications in areas for surveying and restoration of goods of Cultural Heritage  s well as for rehabilitating and exercising limbs of elderly people or injured patients. Mechanical aspects  and features are stresses as important roles that can be successfully addressed when proper mechatronic design makes possible user-oriented operation and understanding.


Dragan Filipović
Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Podgorica, MONTENEGRO
Monday, June 8, 2015, 14:00-14:20, room 1C

Diaphragms in Rectangular Waveguide: An Approach Based on Singular Integral Equation

In this paper some elementary facts about singular integral equations and related topics are presented and used to analyze diaphragms in a rectangular waveguide. Simple, but accurate enough, formulas for diaphragm susceptance are obtained and some numerical examples are given for a comparison with the results obtained from more accurate formulas.


Dražen Jurišić
Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing, University of Zagreb, CROATIA
Tuesday, June 08, 2015, 8:30-8:50, Room 1A

Systems for analog and mixed signal processing in integrated technology

Despite the overwhelming trend of digitization of electronic systems, and many indisputable advantages of having digital signal processing compared to analog, hardware towards the real, outside world, is a part of the overall mixed system and remains mostly analog. This analog part, in most IC-system chips is well known as "analog-front-end" (AFE). Therefore, the analog electronic circuits as part of an AFE, not only will remain an important part of most integrated systems, but often represent one of the bottlenecks in achieving low power consumption and small area on an integrated circuit. This explains why the development and design of new and improved (from the standpoint of IC design) analog electrical circuits still plays an important role - and will likely continue to play an important role - in the development of new and advanced systems-on-chip.
     One of the types of analog circuits that have traditionally lagged behind the others in the process of designing in integrated-circuit form is frequency-selective filters. Filters on the chip, may not have inductances; in the time-continued domain they are the so-called 'active RC filters', which means they combine resistors and capacitors with voltage or current amplifiers. Reasons for the delay in the design of integrated active-RC filters are manifold, but one of the most important are theirs large components tolerances (as a consequence there is a need for circuit tuning), voltage noise within the circuit, limited dynamic range and the size of the chip.
     The new and innovative ideas arise in the design of time-continuous filters from the application of network and transmission line theory. Some special situations in communication systems require novel topologies in filter design, and solve different problems that are important in modern analog IC design. The new approaches are: (i) savings in chip area in elliptical filters in the integrated design using signal-flow graphs, (ii) reducing the sensitivity to variations in the component values by application of negative feedback, (iii) filter partitioning for efficient on-chip filter tuning, and (iv) the new structure of the active-RC filter that is used to build ADSL splitter; a stability problem to be solved with different telephone-line terminations in different countries. All four systems are suitable to be designed in the analog filter IC design.


Živko Kokolanski
Ss. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technologies, Department of Electrical Measurements and Materials,  Rugjer Boskovic bb, 1000 Skopje, MACEDONIA
Tuesday, June 9, 2015, 8:50-9:10, Room 2

Low-cost and miniature passive sensor interfacing based on microcontrollers

Almost every microcontroller-based measurement system contains a sensor. When using passive sensors, the overall performance of the system greatly depends on the applied sensor interface. There are a lot of known passive sensor interfaces for microcontrollers with different properties in terms of cost, size and performance. Depending on the application, some interface properties take precedence over the others. When it comes to cost and size, the direct sensor-to-microcontroller interface approach is advantageous. This sensor interface uses time-to-digital (TD) conversion to estimate the sensor measurand without analog to digital (AD) converter. The application of the sensor interface covers all types of passive sensors (resistive, capacitive and inductive), all sensor configurations (single-ended, differential and bridge), and yet includes calibration.
The aim of this talk is to address different aspects on direct sensor-to-microcontroller interface with focus on accuracy, speed, resolution, cost, and implementation in a microcontrollers. The talk will give insight to all important aspects of the optimization of the interface parameters to achieve best performance for a given application, and will be supported by practical implementation details, experimental results, and working prototype systems.


Ivica Kostanić, Hamad Almohamedh and Fahad Alqurashi
Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL USA
Tuesday, June 9, 2015, 17:00-17:20, Room 2

Non-Referenced Objective Streaming Video Quality Evaluation in Cellular Networks of 3rd and 4th Generation

This talk presents a novel methodology for quality evaluation of streaming video data services.  The methodology requires no reference and it predicts subjective experience of the video quality.  The predictions are based on a nonlinear mapping between objective technical metrics collected by the user equipment and subjective scores given by human evaluators.  The objective metrics may be taken from various levels of the protocol stack.  In the current implementation, the nonlinear mapping is accomplished through a neural network.The performance of the methodology has been tested using data UDP streaming video services over LTE (4G) and HSPA (3G).  The agreement between the predictions and subjective quality evaluation scores is excellent.


Miodrag Kušljević
Termoelektro ENEL, Belgrade, SERBIA
Tuesday, June 9, 2015, 8:30-8:50, Room 2

Multiple-Resonator-Based Harmonic Analysis

A resonator-based observer is a recursive algorithm which can be used for the calculation of the harmonic components of periodic signals. One of the advantages of the recursive spectrum estimation algorithms is that they have better tracking properties than block-based methods (e.g., DFT: Discrete Fourier Transform). This is particularly important when the spectrum estimation is used in real-time systems. In addition to that, the frequency of the signal does not need to be on the DFT grid. By introducing multiple-resonators, i.e. cascades of identical resonators in parallel, the classical frequency sampling method based on the direct utilization of the Lagrange interpolation technique, corresponding to the single-resonator-based structure, is extended to a rather efficient Hermite interpolation scheme. In addition, the output taps of the multiple resonators may fix not only the complex harmonic values but also, according to the actual resonator multiplicity, their first, second, third, fourth, and so on, derivatives at the corresponding frequency. In order to adapt the achieved digital differentiators to their optimized frequency responses around the harmonic frequencies, it is possible to reshape the filters transfer functions. The estimation technique is suitable for application in a wide range of frequency changes, transient conditions, and interharmonic presence, with benefits in a reduced complexity and computational effort. To demonstrate the performance of the developed algorithm, computer simulated data records are processed.


Tatjana Srećković
Institute for Multidisciplinary Research, University of Belgrade, SERBIA

Magnetic behaviour of mechanically milled ZnO: influence of milling media

Dilute magnetic semiconductors (DMS) can be potentially applied for spintronic devices due to their coupling of electronic and magnetic properties. Recently, experimental and theoretical investigations of DMS have drawn much attention. ZnO is a transparent semiconductor, and also it is a cheap material with a rich variety of properties. It has been widely investigated in the past decades because of its applications in optoelectronic, piezoelectric, optical, and other fields. When doped with other transition metals, ZnO can be transformed into an interesting DMS. Various experimental techniques can be used to fabricate ZnO-based DMS. Depending on the synthesis conditions, different nanoscale ZnO materials, exhibiting different magnetic properties, can be obtained. Milling in high-energy mills is one of the methods for preparation of nanocrystalline powders and, in particular, ZnO powder. If the milling assembly is carefully selected, including the milling media and parameters, it is possible to obtain large amounts of powder, with accurate control of particle and crystallite size, amount and types of defects and impurities.
The aim of this talk is to summarize the current status of zinc oxide-based DMS, and discuss the influence of synthesizing route on the structural and microstructural changes and subsequent magnetic properties of ZnO obtained during high-energy milling in steel, zirconia and wolfram carbide vessels.


Milorad Tošić, Zorica Nikolić, Valentina Nejković, Bojan Dimitrijević, Nenad Milošević
Faculty of Electronic Engineering, University of Niš, Serbia

Spectrum Sensing Coordination for FIRE LTE testbeds

One of the main challenges for modern telecommunication systems is the pressure to keep up with constantly increasing requirements for higher data rates. This is particularly critical for mobile communication systems, due to limited spectrum availability. Even though the Long Term Evolution (LTE) standard provides high data rates, it may not be enough for future demands. The higher spectrum bandwidth can be achieved through the combined use of licensed and unlicensed spectrum. LTE-Advanced has introduced a mechanism, named carrier aggregation, which is the key technology that enables the unlicensed spectrum usage (LTE-U). However, in order to use the unlicensed spectrum, there has to be a coordination between the LTE and the native unlicensed spectrum users, such as WiFi or Bluetooth. The first step in the spectrum usage coordination is to obtain the spectrum usage data by spectrum sensing. This paper presents an experimentation framework under development that will be able to support LTE-U experimentation involving different spectrum sensing and spectrum coordination mechanisms. Semantic descriptions and spectrum sensing ontology will be adopted to facilitate cognitive coordination mechanisms. The experimentation is aimed at the coordination between the WiFi and LTE users at 5GHz band, but because of the semantic descriptions, it is flexible enough to support other frequency bands and other technologies as well.



Dušan M. Stipanović
Coordinated Science Laboratory and the Department of Industrial and Enterprise Systems Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois, USA

Ali Abbas
Industrial and Systems Engineering and Public Policy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California, USA

Aleksandar Zatezalo
Scientific Systems Company, Inc., Woburn, Massachusetts, USA

Controlling Multiple Agents with Multiple Objectives

The challenges of controlling multiple agents with multiple objectives are not only related to but include problems in multi-player dynamic games, multi-objective optimization, and decentralized control and estimation. The additional complexity is introduced through agents’ dynamic models with possible nonlinearities, delays and perturbations as well as various state, input and communication constraints. In this talk we will present a number of results related to control and coordination of multi-agent dynamic systems with multiple objectives.  As an illustration, some particular examples of multiple agent systems achieving multiple objectives such as guaranteed capture or evasion, collision avoidance, coverage control, proximity, and tracking, will be presented.


Olivier Warusfel
Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM), Paris, FRANCE

Applications of sound field analysis and synthesis in 3D audio context

The recent development of massive arrays of microphones or loudspeakers has stimulated numerous studies on sound field analysis and synthesis together with the development of 3D audio applications that offer a refined auditory experience. Advanced 3D audio techniques such as High Order Ambisonics (HOA) or Wave Field Synthesis (WFS) rely on large arrays of loudspeakers distributed on the room boundaries. The radiation properties of a sound source may be simulated by digitally controlled spherical loudspeaker arrays (LSA). On the recording side, spherical microphone arrays (SMA) are used to capture a soundscape or a musical ensemble performance with high spatial resolution. In room acoustics, high-resolution sound field characterization can be achieved by measuring directional room impulse responses (DRIR) that combine microphone and loudspeaker arrays. The measured DRIRs may be then exploited in convolution-based reverberators for the auralization of room acoustics with faithful rendering of its spatial attributes or for 3D audio-mixing applications. In this particular context, the sound engineer will typically want to fine tune the perceptual attributes of the original DRIRs in order to better fit the aesthetic of the mixing. Such parametric control first requires the development of an analysis-synthesis framework that operates on a space-time-frequency representation of the DRIRs. The theoretical and perceptual properties of these spatialization techniques are presented and illustrated in various contexts ranging from music performance, post-production and broadcast to virtual reality applications. Meanwhile, the ever-growing expansion of mobile devices calls for the deployment of broadcast solutions able to deliver 3D audio content and that allow for a personalized binaural rendering over headphones on the end user side.