Control theory

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  • Professor Emeritus Michael Athans, pioneer in control theory, dies at 83

    Longtime professor of electrical engineering was also a transformative director of the MIT Laboratory for Information and Decisions Systems.

    June 8, 2020
  • Robot meets world

    A new way of reasoning about what happens when a robot’s limb strikes an object could lead to more efficient and reliable robotic-control systems.

    March 21, 2013
  • Can control theory make software better?

    Techniques used to ensure that airplanes won’t stall out in flight could be adapted to prove that computer programs won’t divide by zero.

    March 19, 2013
  • Moving past trial and error

    Richard Braatz applies math to design new materials and processes for drug manufacturing.

    February 15, 2012
  • The too-smart-for-its-own-good grid

    New technologies intended to boost reliance on renewable energy could destabilize the power grid if they’re not matched with careful pricing policies.

    August 3, 2011
  • After almost 20 years, math problem falls

    MIT researchers’ answer to a major question in the field of optimization brings disappointing news — but there’s a silver lining.

    July 15, 2011
  • How to control complex networks

    New algorithm offers ability to influence systems such as living cells or social networks.

    May 12, 2011
  • Speeding swarms of sensor robots

    A new algorithm ensures that robotic environmental sensors will be able to focus on areas of interest without giving other areas short shrift.

    May 3, 2011
  • Prodigy of probability

    Norbert Wiener gained fame as the father of cybernetics, but his earlier work on statistical descriptions of complex systems may prove more important.

    January 19, 2011
  • A plane that lands like a bird

    An innovative control system allows a foam glider to touch down on a perch or a wire like a pet parakeet.

    July 20, 2010