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Professor, Computer Engineering
Baskin School of Engineering
1156 High St
Mail Stop SOE3
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
Phone Number: 831-459-3054
Department: Computer Engineering
Office Location: Engineering 2, Room 337B
Office Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 1-3PM
I was born in Sousse, Tunisia. I spent a fair bit of my childhood moving around from place to place, as my father was a civil engineer working on infrastructure projects of various sorts around the world. I spent six years in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where I went to high school.
My undergraduate degree is from Princeton University, in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. Following Princeton, I went to work for an international oilfield services company: Schlumberger. I spent a year in Algeria, and another in Nigeria before leaving Schlumberger. From there I went to Israel, where I spent a year studying Aeronautics at the Technion in Haifa.
After my return from Israel, I started at Stanford University, in the Aeronautics and Astronautics department. I received both my Masters and Ph.D. from Stanford, where I built an autonomous catamaran for my thesis. The catamaran was based on a modified Prindle-19, with the mast removed and replaced by a freely rotating wingsail. After graduation, I spent a year in Los Angeles consulting on an autonomous ground vehicle project.
I joined the Computer Engineering Faculty at UC Santa Cruz in 2003, with a research focus on autonomous and embedded systems. I started the Autonomous Systems Lab, and have a number of graduate and undergraduate students working with me on a variety of research projects. My favorite (and most popular) class to teach is CMPE118, Introduction to Mechatronics, where teams of students build a robot in 10 weeks.
I recently returned from sabbatical in Lisbon, Portugal, where I was working at ISR/IST. I am married, with a son and another on the way. My wife and I enjoy living near the Ocean on the West Side of Santa Cruz, chasing after our 2 year old son, and are expecting his baby brother this summer.
Embedded systems; robust software architectures for real-time reactive systems; sensor fusion; guidance, navigation, and control (GNC) system identification; robust and advanced control schemes; feedback control systems; robotics; unmanned autonomous vehicles (UAVs) and cooperative control
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