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Personal profile

Research profile

Maurice Heemels is a Full professor at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) and Chair of Hybrid and Networked Systems. His research is oriented towards general system and control theory with an emphasis on the development of multi-disciplinary design techniques, across a number of areas including hybrid systems, networked control, resource-aware (event-triggered) control, constrained control including model predictive control (MPC) and cyber-physical systems.

Cyber-physical systems bridge the ‘cyber’ (computation, communication and control) world and the physical world (heating, cooling, motion, vibration...) in next generation high-tech professional systems for applications such as image-based therapies, lithography, and electron microscopy. The mathematical modelling of these CPS require the combination of diverse models from different fields and often lead to hybrid sysems  that exhibit both discrete and continuous dynamics (e.g., the combination of finite state machines/automato/communication models on the one hand and difference or differential equations on the other hand). The creation of analysis techniques for hybrid systems and accompanying design tools for CPS of the future is at the heart of Maurice's interests.

Particular design questions are:

  • How to conceive resource-aware control strategies moving away from time-triggered controller operation, thereby only using valuable system's resources as computation power and communication bandwidth, when is actually needed to o guarantee closed-loop stability, safety and performance properties? This calls for a paradigm shift in which time-triggered periodic controllers are replaced by asynchronous event-triggered control schemes that only compute or communicate when it is really necessary. Applications include cooperative and automated driving (CACC)
  • How to design (wireless) networked control systems connecting sensors, controllers, and actuators over shared media with bandwidth-limitaitons? Applications are diverse ranging from manufacturing plants, to cooperating drones and robots, precision agriculture, etc.
  • What switching or hybrid controllers can overcome the limitations of linear time-invariant controllers, as are classicaly used, to meet increasing throughput and accuracy demands in motion control and mechatronic systems? Various innovative strategies are being proposed, including HIGS (hybrid integrator-gain systems), reset controllers, variable-gain controllers, SPANI-filters, etc. 
  • What are excellent design tools for MPC or other constrained control systems that are computionally feasible, stable, and high-performant while taking care of constraints on control inputs and plant outputs? Our MPC work is exploited in diverse application domains including local hyperthermia for improving the efficacy of cancer treatments, precision agriculture to feed the world in the future and thermal-mechanical problems in lithography machines (in order to sustain Moore's law).

Academic background

Maurice Heemels received his MSc and PhD in mathematics from TU/e in 1995 and 1999, respectively (both summa cum laude, top 5% of students). From 2000 to 2004 he worked at the TU/e Electrical Engineering Department as an Assistant Professor and from 2004 to 2006 at the Embedded Systems Institute (ESI) as a Research Fellow. He joined the department of Mechanical Engineering in 2006, where he is currently a Full Professor in the Control Systems Technology group.  Maurice has held visiting professor positions at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland (2001), and the University of California at Santa Barbara, California, USA (2008). He also worked at the Research & Development laboratory of Océ in Venlo, The Netherlands.  

Maurice is a Fellow of the IEEE and the Chair of the IFAC Technical Committee 1.5 on "Networked Systems." Maurice served/s as an Associate Editor for the journals IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control, Automatica, Annual Reviews in Control and Nonlinear Analysis: Hybrid Systems. He is currently a Senior Editor for the IFAC/Elsevier journal Nonlinear Analysis: Hybrid Systems. Maurice's activities as IPC (co)chair include the European Control Conference 2021 (The Netherlands), IFAC Conference on Analysis and Design of Hybrid Systems 2018 (ADHS, Oxford, UK), IFAC Workshop on Distributed Estimation and Control in Networked Systems (NecSys, Germany, 2013) and European Control Conference 2013 (ECC, Switzerland, 2013). He acted also as General Chair of the FAC Conference on Analysis and Design of Hybrid Systems 2012 (ADHS, Eindhoven, NL). He was a recipient of a prestigious VICI grant "Wireless Control Systems: A new frontier in Automation." He acquired over 7 MEuro of research funding from NWO, OP-zuid, EU, STW/KWF ("Technology for Oncology"), and industry. Maurice was an invited keynote speaker at various leading conference including European Control Conference (ECC) 2014 (France), AANS 2014 (Italy), NMPC 2012/2015 (NL,Spain), IEEE EBCCSP 2015 (Poland),  IEEE CDC 2018 (USA), IFAC NECSYS 2019 (USA), IEEE CODIT 2019 (France), etc.  

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Research Output 1996 2019

Open Access
File
Motion control
Sampling
Hardware
Costs
Feedforward control

Control allocation for a high-precision linear transport system

Beerens, R., Thissen, S. C. N., van der Maas, A., Pancras, W. C. M., Gommans, T. M. P., van de Wouw, N. & Heemels, W. P. M. H., 18 Jan 2019, 2018 IEEE Conference on Decision and Control, CDC 2018. Piscataway: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, p. 1657-1662 6 p. 8618867

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

Motion Tracking
Hardware Design
Linear motors
Permanent Magnet
Synchronous motors

Exploring the uncharted territories of networked control systems: by scavenging for structure in dynamics and communication

Heijmans, S., 12 Jun 2019, Eindhoven: Technische Universiteit Eindhoven. 287 p.

Research output: ThesisPhd Thesis 1 (Research TU/e / Graduation TU/e)Academic

Open Access
File
Networked control systems
Scavenging
Communication

Model-based estimation and control of the particle distribution and discharge supervision in nuclear fusion reactors

Blanken, T. C., 21 Jan 2019, Eindhoven: Technische Universiteit Eindhoven. 155 p.

Research output: ThesisPhd Thesis 1 (Research TU/e / Graduation TU/e)Academic

Open Access
File

Model-based real-time plasma electron density profile estimation and control on ASDEX Upgrade and TCV

Blanken, T. C., Felici, F., Galperti, C., Kudláček, O., Janky, F., Mlynek, A., Giannone, L., Lang, P. T., Treutterer, W., Heemels, W. P. M. H. & de Baar, M. R., 1 Oct 2019, In : Fusion Engineering and Design. 147, 16 p., 111211

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Carrier concentration
Plasmas
Controllers
Feedback
Experiments

Prizes

NWO Vici Award : Wireless control

Maurice Heemels (Recipient), 2010

Recognition: NWOViciScientific

Mechanical engineering
Robots
Control systems
Communication

Activities 2000 2016

  • 5 Editorial activity
  • 5 Contributed talk
  • 1 Workshop, seminar, course or exhibition

Nonlinear Analysis: Hybrid Systems (Journal)

Maurice Heemels (Editorial board member)
2016 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activityScientific

IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control (Journal)

Maurice Heemels (Editorial board member)
20162017

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activityScientific

Annual Reviews in Control (Journal)

Maurice Heemels (Editorial board member)
2016 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activityScientific

Automatica (Journal)

Maurice Heemels (Editorial board member)
20092015

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activityScientific

Nonlinear Analysis: Hybrid Systems (Journal)

Maurice Heemels (Editorial board member)
20082015

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activityScientific

Courses

Press / Media

Student theses

Active damping of lenstop vibrations

Author: Verbeek, T., 31 Dec 2000

Supervisor: Butler, H. (Supervisor 1), Damen, A. (Supervisor 2) & Heemels, W. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master

File

Adaptive pulse processing in energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy

Author: Seker, H., 31 Aug 2013

Supervisor: Guerreiro Tomé Antunes, D. (Supervisor 1), Janssen, B. (External coach), Kooijman, C. (External coach) & Heemels, W. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master

A scheduled control design for motion stages with varying sensor configurations

Author: van der Weijst, R., 31 Dec 2014

Supervisor: Heertjes, M. (Supervisor 1), van Loon, S. (Supervisor 2) & Heemels, W. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master

'Bandwidth-on-demand' control of a nano-manipulator

Author: Simon, A., 31 Dec 2014

Supervisor: Heemels, W. (Supervisor 1), van de Wouw, N. (Supervisor 2), Heertjes, M. (Supervisor 2), de Boeij, J. (Supervisor 2) & Hunnekens, B. (Supervisor 2)

Student thesis: Master

Continuous time input constrained LQR with applications

Author: Janssens, D., 18 Mar 2016

Supervisor: Heemels, W. (Supervisor 1) & van Keulen, T. (Coach)

Student thesis: Master