This week Ir. Nicolas Bono Rossello, currently PhD student at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) under the supervision of Prof. E. Garone, was awarded with the “Young Paper Award” of the 7th IFAC Conference on Sensing, Control and Automation Technologies in Agriculture

The title of the awarded paper is “State Estimation of Pest Populations subject to Intermittent Measurements” authored by Nicolas Bono Rossello, Luca Rossini, Stefano Speranza, and Emanuele Garone. This paper is the result of an uncommon and very fruitful collaboration between the control engineers of the ULB and the entomology group of the University of Tuscia, Italy (Dr. Luca Rossini and Prof. Stefano Speranza). The paper proposes a methodology which is able to enhance the current monitoring and forecasting of infestations. This work is a fundamental step toward a more environmentally sustainable management of pests in farms and orchards.

Ir. Bono Rossello (who will defend his PhD in October) is not new to this kind of achievements: indeed, even in the previous edition of the same conference (Sydney 2019) he was awarded with the same prize for his paper: “A novel observer-based architecture for Water Management in Large-Scale (Hazelnut) Orchards”. These two prizes demonstrate the high originality and potential impact of joint research involving control engineers and agronomists for the development of the agriculture of tomorrow.

SRBE/KBVE 2021 Prize

François Gruwé obtained the prize from the Belgian Royal Society of Electricians (SRBE) for his master thesis entitled “Fast and Safe Charging of Lithium-Ion Batteries by Constrained Control” jointly supervised by Emanuele Garone and Luis Daniel Couto.

2020-BIR&D award for cross-disciplinary research

Luis Daniel Couto has won a BIR&D award for his PhD thesis entitled “Electrochemical Modeling, Supervision and Control of Lithium-Ion Batteries”. The Belgian Industrial Research and Development Board BIR&D, jointly with FRS-FNRS and FWO, rewards original cross-disciplinary research works with potential for industrial valorization. Luis Daniel is presently pursuing his research at the University of Oxford thanks to the support of the Wiener-Anspach Foundation.

Two new applied PhD projects

Two new PhD researchers are joining the team, Michele Ambrosino and Benjamin Wauthion. They will work on the Applied PhD projects respectively entitled Brikiebots – Robotic Briclayer: a multi-robot system for sand-lime blocks and MONISA – Health monitoring of an electromechanical actuator (EMA) for aircraft primary flight surface control.

Young Author Award at the Agricontrol Conference 2019

PANTHEON participated to the 6th IFAC conference on Sensing, Control and Automation Technologies for Agriculture, held in Sydney Australia from 4-6 December 2019. During this conference Nicolas Bono Rossello was awarded with the « Young Author Award » for the paper « A novel Observer-based Architecture for Water Management in Large-Scale (Hazelnut) Orchards » authored by Nicolas Bono Rossello, Renzo Fabrizio Carpio, Andrea Gasparri and Emanuele Garone.
More information is available here :

Next SAAS seminar on Identifiability of Dynamical Networks

The next SAAS seminar will be held on December 10th at 10:30 am at our laboratory (SAAS, room L2.210, Solbosch). The seminar is entitled « Identifiability of dynamical networks » and will be delivered by Alexandre Sanfelici Bazanella, Full Professor at the Department of Automation and Energy (DELAE), Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
More information is available here :

Next SAAS seminar on Time-distributed optimization for Model Predictive Control

The next SAAS seminar will be held on December 5th at 10:30 am at our laboratory (SAAS, room L2.210, Solbosch). The seminar is entitled « Time-distributed optimization for Model Predictive Control » and will be delivered by Dominic Liao-McPherson, PhD Candidate at the Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States.
More information is available here :

PANTHEON Kick-Off meeting

On the 23rd and 24th of November the project PANTHEON had its kickoff meeting. The kick-off meeting was held on the premises of the University Roma Tre.
Project PANTHEON is a research project funded by the European Commission within the Horizon 2020 framework programme. Inspired by the real needs of the partner Ferrero, the project aims at defining a new paradigm for the precision farming of hazelnut orchards. The core idea is to build a system able to monitor the phytosanitary status of each single plant of the orchard. This will result in focused interventions, yielding an increase in the overall orchard production while being more cost-effective and environmentally friendly.
The PANTHEON consortium is coordinated by Prof. A. Gasparri and consists of four universities (Roma Tre, ULB, Trier, and Tuscia) and two industrial partners (Sigma Consulting, and Ferrero), which provide the complementary expertise and technologies (ranging from robotics and control theory, to agronomy, remote sensing, and big data) needed for the success of the project.
For more information on the kick-off meeting: and


The project named “MOBIDALAB” at SAAS department will be launched as of January 2018. The objective consists in studying the design, building and commercializing new devices for the teaching of control system theory to future engineers. In that context, we plan to develop modular, evolving, and open-source solutions to provide a better, more practical learning experience. This project will be supported by the Walloon region under the “FIRST Spin-off” program. For more info, join us :
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SAAS Delegation at IFAC World Congress 2017

The SAAS department participated to the IFAC World Congress 2017 with a large delegation.

The SAAS delegates presented 5 conference contributions and participated to several technical committees.  Prof. Michel Kinnaert also presided the Young Author Prize Committee. In the previous edition (IFAC WC 2014) the SAAS members E. Garone and M. Nicotra obtained a Honourable Mention for the same prize.
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