Department of Computer Science

YorRobots and RoboStar Industry Exhibition

The event will take place at the University of York, UK.


Day 1: Tuesday, 11th October 2022

held at Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media building
Time Activity/Speaker
13:00 Lunch, coffee, and registration
ISA building tour (booking required)
14:00 Welcome
Ana Cavalcanti
14:05 RoboStar vision
Ana Cavalcanti
14:20 RoboChart

14:20 Overview
Alvaro Miyazawa
14:25 Probability
Kangfeng Ye
14:30 Neural Networks
Ziggy Atalla
14:35 Hardware/software co-verification: combining RoboStar technology with Simulink Design Verifier
Yvonne Murray
14:40 Q&A session
14:50 RoboWorld

14:50 Overview
Gustavo Carvalho
14:55 Semantics and model checking
James Baxter
15:00 Verification of Robotic Systems with Humans in the Loop
Holly Hendry
15:05 Q&A session
15:15 RoboSim

15:15 RoboSim: software models for sound simulation
Pedro Ribeiro

Abstract: Simulation is a favoured technique for analysis of robotic systems. Currently, however, simulations are programmed in an ad hoc way, for specific simulators, using either proprietary languages or general languages like C or C++. Even when a higher-level language is used, no clear relation between the simulation and a design model is established. I will describe the main features of a domain-specific notation called RoboSim, designed for modelling of (verified) simulations.

15:20 From RoboChart to RoboSim
Augusto Sampaio
15:25 p-models
Alvaro Miyazawa
15:30 Physics engines in the loop
Arjun Badyal
15:35 Reasoning with UPPAAL
Dehui Du
15:40 From RoboSim to code
Alvaro Miyazawa
15:45 Q&A session
15:55 Coffee break
Verification and case studies
16:25 RoboCert - Property Specification for Robotics
Matt Windsor

Abstract: Once we have a robot software design model in RoboChart, a frequent goal is to specify and verify properties over it. These properties are often timed: for instance, ‘every time the robot detects an obstacle, it turns away from it within 5 seconds’. In this talk, I discuss work on RoboCert, the RoboStar notation for property expression. This work implements an adaptation of UML sequence diagrams to specify timed properties over RoboChart model components and collections of components. I will briefly explore RoboCert sequence diagrams, and how we use them in verification, with respect to a small example.

16:30 Trustworthy Autonomous Systems Node on Verifiability
Shival Dubbey, Bilal Kaddouh, Mohammad Mousavi, Pedro Ribeiro, Matt Windsor
16:50 From RoboSim to ROS
Arjun Badyal, Alan Millard, Alvaro Miyazawa

Abstract: The Robot Operating System (ROS) is the de facto standard middleware for robotics in academia and some industrial use cases. However, there is not yet a fully traceable methodology for developing formally verified control algorithms for robots using ROS. This talk will present early work on integrating RoboSim with ROS, via the automatic generation of code from a verified model. This end-to-end process is validated on a multi-robot task, through the deployment of a control algorithm generated from a RoboSim model.

17:00 Dressing robot
Yasmeen Rafiq, Thomas Wright
17:10 Testing
Rob Hierons
17:15 Isabelle/UTP
Simon Foster
17:20 Assurance
Fang Yan
17:25 Architectures
Will Barnett
17:30 TAS Resilience: SLEEC
Sinem Yaman
17:35 Q&A session
17:45 CPD: Assurance and Proof
Jim Woodcock
17:50 Q&A session
18:00 Advisory board meeting
Poster exhibitions and demonstrations will also take place during the breaks.

Day 2: Wednesday, 12th October 2022

held at Ron Cooke Hub
Time Activity/Speaker
08:30 ISA building tour (booking required)
09:00 Coffee and registration
ISA building tour (booking required)
09:30 Welcome, YorRobots
09:40 Institute for Safe Autonomy
09:55 A Verified Concurrent AI Planner (DRis-Q)
Colin O'Halloran

Abstract: At D-RisQ we are developing a parallel inference engine on an FPGA that solves a planning problem in real time expressed in the AI planning representation of PDDL. We are employing FDR4 to verify that a desired goal can be achieved satisfying time and energy constraints as well as for consistency of the PDDL representation. The aim of the work is to implement verifiable planning failure tolerance when the environment violates planning assumptions.

10:10 Assurance as an enabler of innovation (Adelard)
Robin Bloomfield

Abstract: This talk discusses how assurance cases can support innovation in an outcome based regulatory regime. I outline the deployment of classical approaches, the recent evolution of assurance frameworks, the tactical guidance we have developed to support innovation, the need for semantic templates and Assurance 2.0.

10:30 CLEARSY Safety Platform for automatic / autonomous mobility (ClearSy)
Thierry Lecomte

Abstract: This hardware and software platform is a safety computer providing vital services. The talk introduces its architecture and safety principles, and presents some automatic and autonomous applications in the transportation domain.

10:45 Coffee break
Chair: Ana Cavalcanti
11:15 Management, Control, and Visualisation – The Software Suite Behind RACE Remote Operations (RACE)
Matthew Goodliffe

Abstract: RACE, previously the JET Remote Handling department, has been maintaining the JET fusion experiment in Culham for over 30 years. Although the tasks, technology, and the tokamak itself have changed over this time, 3 crucial capabilities have remained at the core of what is required to keep the world’s most power fusion reactor functioning – management of operations, control of hardware, and the visualisation of activities. In this whistle-stop tour of how these capabilities have advanced and evolved in order to keep up with the ever-changing world of fusion science, we will also look to how RACE is applying the same 3 principals to future fusion remote maintenance applications as well as those outside fusion involving decommissioning, inspection, and maintenance. We will explore the software suite developed within RACE for various applications, how it supports current projects, and how it aims to support those in the future.

11:30 Domestic Robotics and Safe Autonomy (Dyson)
Rob Deaves, Agish George

Abstract: The presentation will start with a look at ‘where we are’ with on-the-shelf robotic products at Dyson with an overview of the 360Heurist. This will be followed by a brief description of our current developments in algorithmic capability, systems engineering, product simulation and software processes. A glimpse into future developments of robotics at Dyson will also be provided. To conclude, a list of safety challenges for future domestic robotics will be provided!

11:45 Functional Safety and PoC productionisation (LDRA)
Chris Tapp

Abstract: The world of robotics is full of exciting possibilities. From industrial automation to surgery, from biocybernetics to radioactive material handling, the fields of human endeavour set to benefit from innovation technological advancement know almost no bounds. Many of these advances are in fields where safety is paramount. Consequently, the rigor associated with the development processes for Proofs of Concept (PoC) may well fall short of that required for real-world applications.

The implications of that can be stark. History is littered with embedded safety-critical applications that have failed to make the grade (Ariane 5, Toyota’s unintended acceleration, Boeing 737 MAX …) – and those are the applications that have made production. Who knows how many innovations have not got that far because the overhead of retrospective adherence to the IEC 61508 functional-safety standard and its derivatives (IEC 62304 for medical devices and IEC 61513 in nuclear power, amongst many others) has rendered them commercially unjustifiable?.

This presentation will explain why productionisation of safety-critical systems software can be so onerous, and it will begin to introduce precautions that can be taken during the research process to help minimise its impact.

12:00 Autonomous Factories (BAE)
David Holmes

Abstract: Automation, Connectivity and Intelligent systems will fundamentally change industry. BAE Systems is developing that future now and through its Factory of the future programme demonstrating how automation and skilled people can work together to improve productivity, accommodate complexity but also realise a highly flexible manuafcturing capability. This capability will enable industrial investment to be maximise across multiple products, will be able to respond to change rapidly and can accommodate extensive upgrade to complex products. Mobile automation, connectivity, exploitation of data across the enterprise and embedded intelligence are key enablers for automatic and autonomous factory orchestration. BAE Systems will provide an overview of the path to autonomous factories and how the UK research and technology landscape is well positioned to help realise these differentiating capabilities.

12:15 Challenges for Modelling the Human within Human Machine Teaming (Thales)
Mark Chattington

Abstract: This presentation will cover the work conducted in Thales R&D, work conducted within TBPHASE (EPSRC-funded programme grant – focused on Hybrid Autonomous Systems T-B PHASE | Faculty of Engineering | University of Bristol) and as part of a RAEng Industry Fellowship with the RoboStar team. It explores a review of current Human Factors Techniques and bridging activities to allow user interaction with a system to be modelled within RoboStar (RoboHumans).

12:30 Lunch
ISA building tour (booking required)
Chair: Andy Pratt
13:15 A development journey of Robotti, our agricultural robot, using digital twins and cyper physical systems (AgroIntelli)
Ole Green

Abstract: Development within the agricultural domain is expensive in hardware prototypes and challenging due to limited suitable time windows during the year for testing of prototypes as part of the development and validation process. The use of digital twins and cyper physical systems have enables us to keep a very high pace in our development as well as keeping development costs to a minimum as physical prototypes have been reduced to a few during our development journey. In my presentation I will give an insight how cutting edge engineering tools have enables us to development Robotti and be one of the first agricultural robots on the market.

13:30 Sparking Innovation at Connected Places Catapult – Removing the barriers to automation (Connected Places)
Richard Holland

Abstract: The Catapult will share an insight into some of the recent initiatives from the world of Automated Vehicles, taking a look at the possible environmental impacts and some of the regulation and certification enablers to help bring them to market.

13:45 Business of Bots (RobotCenter)
Philip English

Abstract: In a short presentation, Philip English, Co-Director at Robot Center a Collaborative Robotics Company, specialising in Autonomous Mobile Platforms, will briefly introduce the company and its ROI Methodology for Robot Deployment, Development & Integration and then present MiR Robots:- MiR robots help optimize your internal logistics and take over monotone and time-consuming tasks allowing the employees to focus on more value-adding work. and Temi Robots:- Temi is a multinational robotics company that specialises in Robot as a Service solutions (RaaS), autonomous platforms, AI, smart assistant and cloud-based services.

14:00 Verified Systems International and its Strategy for Verification and Validation of Autonomous Systems
Jan Peleska

Abstract: According to our expectations, the certification of safety-critical autonomous systems in the robotic and transportation domains will become a well-controlled process within the next 5 years. It has to be taken into account, however, that as of today, the standardisation process describing the conditions for system design, verification, and validation to be fulfilled for obtaining certification credit has not been completed yet. Verified Systems is a company specialised on V&V of safety-critical cyber-physical systems, and one of its business objectives is to provide V&V services required for autonomous systems certification. In this talk, we describe the main challenges still to be solved for obtaining a suitable basis of standards. Moreover, we explain how specific V&V methodology will become crucial for obtaining certification credit with acceptable effort.

14:15 Robotics: On the threshold of a dream? (Bristol Robotics Lab)
Tony Pipe

Abstract: In this short presentation, Tony Pipe, Professor of Robotics and Automation from the Bristol Robotics Laboratory, will briefly introduce the laboratory itself, and then make a case that the field in general is nudging ever closer to the edge of a ‘slippery slope’ that leads to the bottom of another “boom and bust” loop. To avoid this undesirable scenario, he will propose that a set of linked crucial issues in robotics research and development must be addressed very promptly. He will use the very rapid developments taking place in the Connected Autonomous Vehicles sector as an illustrative example of where many of these issues are currently being addressed. Here, assuring safety in the face of a huge action state space is one of the most significant challenges. However, many of the issues to be addressed in this sector are, to one extent or another, typical of many other emerging robotics application domains.

14:30 Intelligent systems and robotics
Stephen Smith
14:45 Coffee break
Chair: Ian Fairlamb
15:15 YorRobots CDT
Jim Woodcock
15:30 Touch in Robots - Why do Robots need a sense of touch (ShadowRobot)
Rich Walker

Abstract: Shadow Robot have been developing highly dexterous robot hands for over 20 years, and recently building advanced telerobots making use of this technology. What difference does a sense of touch make to a telerobot or an autonomous robot, and what needs to be done to make that happen?

15:45 Trends in laboratory automation (LabMan)
Ian Riley

Abstract: Established in 1992, Labman Automation design and build laboratory automation, providing equipment across a wide range of sectors. This short talk reflects on the past, present, and future trends in Lab automation from Labman’s perspective.

16:00 Standardized, Digitalized, Accelerated and easy-accessible HTE Solutions for Chemists (Chemspeed Technologies)
Ahmed Mahmoud

Abstract: The benefits of high throughput experimentation, particularly in the chemistry laboratory, cannot be overstated. In R&D organizations, where trial & error is a part of a scientist’s everyday life, nothing can be better than having the ability to test multiple knowledge-driven hypotheses simultaneously. Yet, there are still many lab-based chemists that will serially test their synthetic hypotheses (new transformations, reactivity, solvent effects, etc), often overstressing how the results of each experiment will provide important learnings for future iterations. While this is arguably true, a well-designed array of carefully controlled experiments, will almost always supply you with improved conditions for a specific transformation, and usually faster than any serial journey of single reactions.

For change to occur in any organization, there must be a demonstrable benefit to the individual scientist, as well as the collective organization, but maybe more important than that, the cost of change, cannot exceed the benefit to those being asked to change their work routines. Lowering the cost of this change by simplifying the integration and adoption of semi-automated and automated kit, and improved ELNs to easily orchestrate and capture experimental results into daily workflows, is a paramount objective for software and hardware suppliers. In this web presentation we will describe our efforts to simplify acceptance so that, when appropriate, high throughput experimentation becomes the default choice for scientists that need to optimize a specific chemical transformation.

16:15 Automation in chemistry at GSK (GSK)
Darren Caine

Abstract: This presentation outlines the approach taken by GSK to automating chemistry in a Process Development lab. It describes the operating model, equipment choices and impact made over the past five years. It will also focus on future requirements

16:30 Q&A and closing
17:00 Drinks and public lecture by Will Smith
ISA building tour (booking required)
Poster exhibitions and demonstrations will also take place during the breaks.

Department of Computer Science
Deramore Lane, University of York, Heslington, York, YO10 5GH, UK
Tel: 01904 325500
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