Dr Syed Atif Mehdi

Dr Syed Atif Mehdi

Assistant Professor

Faculty of Information Technology

I am interested in developing autonomous systems that can perceive the environment around them and perform according to the dynamics of the situation. This will involve usage of redundant sensor systems and fusion of data to ensure safety of humans in the surroundings of the autonomous robots.

Undergrad Courses:
Introduction to Robotics
Data Structures and Algorithms
Grad Courses:
Mobile Robotics
Advanced Operating Systems
Planned courses in future:
Autonomous Mobile Robots
Biologically Motivated Robots
Analysis of Algorithms
Comparison of Programming Languages

Summary

  • Solid academic and research background depicted through publications in international journals and conferences
  • Author and co-author of more than 20 scientific publications in various journals, conferences and workshops
  • Reviewer of several national and international journals and conferences
  • Effective communication skills polished while teaching computer science courses

Research Interests

I am interested in developing autonomous systems that can perceive the environment around them and perform according to the dynamics of the situation. This will involve usage of redundant sensor systems and fusion of data to ensure safety of humans in the surroundings of the autonomous robots.

Employment

07/2016 till now
University of Central Punjab (Assistant Professor)
Teaching computer science and robotics courses to BS and MS students. Director of Center of Robotics and Security (CoRaS) at UCP.
03/2015 – 06/2016

AEDesign Pvt Ltd (Manager Robotics and Embedded Systems)

Responsible for development of a tracked mobile robot, AVCASS, for testing autonomous cars and a 3 degree of freedom robotic arm for cleaning SunDish

06/2015 – 06/2016

University of Central Punjab (Visiting Faculty)

Teaching “Introduction to Robotics” at undergraduate level as visiting faculty member.

Current Research Topics

Agricultural Field Monitoring using Robots

Advising various groups of undergraduate and graduate students to work on field monitoring using different types of robots. The focus is to track the health of the plants and weeds in the field with autonomous robots.

Autonomous Wheel Chair

Advising a group of students to develop an autonomous wheel chair. The simulation model has been developed and autonomous movements are being implemented.

Academic Qualification

10/2008 – 05/2014
PhD in Computer Science
Robotics Research Lab, Department of Computer Science
University of Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany
Thesis: Using the Human Daily Routine for Optimizing Search Processes using a Service Robot in Elderly Care Applications
Supervisor: Prof. Dr. rer.nat. Karsten Berns
Topic: The research goal of the thesis was to develop a strategy that would enable an autonomous mobile robot (ARTOS, in this case) to effectively and efficiently search an elderly person at home by learning the daily routine of the person.
2001 – 2003
MS in Computer Science
FAST – NU, Lahore, Pakistan
Thesis: A Methodology for Development and Optimization of Fuzzy Rule Based System as Applied to Sign Language Recognition Problem
Supervisor: Dr. A. Rauf Baig
1998 – 2001
BS in Computer Science
FAST – NU, Lahore, Pakistan
Project: Sign Language Recognition using Data Gloves
Supervisor: Dr. Anjum P. Saleemi

Research Jobs

05/2014 – 02/2015
Post-Doc at University of Kaiserslautern
I was involved in building up the infrastructure for ZentrumfuerNutzfahrzeugtechnologie (ZNT) which will be a center for research in commercial vehicles. My focus in ZNT was to develop assistance systems for the humans to better understand the environment while operating the heavy machinery.
From robotics perspective, I was working with flying robots to make them autonomous and use them for perception of the environment. The information thus obtained can be used by humans or other robots to evaluate the situation.
04/2011 – 09/2012
Scientific Assistant (HiWi) at Robotics Research Lab, University of Kaiserslautern
My responsibility during this job was to supervise the Autonomous Low Speed Tractor (ALST) project. The goal of the project was to ensure safety of humans around an autonomous tractor moving at low speeds in agricultural fields. To achieve the desired results, a variety of sensors were mounted on the tractor to have a fail-safe system. The information from these sensors was fused to extract meaningful information. This research project was in collaboration with John Deere, Kaiserslautern.
04/2008 – 09/2010
Scientific Assistant (HiWi) at German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI), Kaiserslautern
I was involved in Pattern Recognition Engineering (PaREn) project where I developed some parts of libraries for image processing. Later I also developed a plug-in for Rapid Miner, open-source software, to determine the architecture and parameters of Neural Network for a given problem.

Teaching Experience

08/2008 – 02/2015
University of Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany

  • Teaching assistant for Biologically Motivated Robots taught by Prof. Dr. Karsten Berns
  • Conducted exercises and taught several modules of the course
  • Supervised MS and BS seminars and thesis

07/2003 – 07/2007
University of Management and Technology, Lahore, Pakistan

  • Assistant Professor in the department of computer science at School of Science and Technology
  • Taught various courses at BS and MS levels including Artificial Intelligence, Algorithm Analysis and Design, Software Design, Programming Languages and Data Structures
  • Supervised a number of undergraduate projects and graduate thesis

Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan

  • Taught Multimedia Systems as graduate level course and Artificial Intelligence as undergraduate level course while serving as a visiting faculty member
  • Supervised a number of undergraduate projects and graduate thesis

Industry Experience

09/2002 – 10/2003
Zenith Technologies (Entrepreneur Effort)
Designed, developed and deployed a complete billing system for Kasur 07/2003 – 02/2004Tanneries Waste Management Agency.
07/2000 – 09/2001

NetSol Pvt Ltd (Associate Software Engineer)

Responsible for requirement analysis and development of functional specification of Citibank project.

Research Activities

  • Co-organized RoboMela2017 held at Ali Institute, Lahore on Oct 12-14, 2017. RoboMela2017 has three international workshops namely, 13th International Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, 3rd International Workshop on Precision Agriculture and 2nd International Workshop on Robotics and E-Agriculture.
  • Co-organized the 11th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Oct 13-15, 2016 at UCP, Lahore
  • Co-organized the Workshop on Robotics and E-Agriculture, Oct 14, 2016 at PC Hotel, Lahore
  • Co-organized the 9th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Oct 30- Nov 1, 2015 at LUMS and FAST-NU, Lahore
  • Organized the 8th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Jul 30-31, 2015 at Schloss Dagstuhl, Germany
  • Co-organized the 7th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Oct 17-18, 2014 at FAST-NU, Lahore
  • Involved in organization of 3rd International Commercial Vehicle Technology Symposium (CVT), Mar 11-13, 2014 at University of Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany
  • Organized the 6th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Jul 9, 2014 at Villa Denis, Diemerstein, Germany
  • Co-organized the 5th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Nov 1, 2013 at LUMS, Lahore
  • Organized the 4th Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Jun 13-14, 2013 at Schloss Dagstuhl, Germany
  • Co-organized the 3rd German-Pakistani Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, Nov 16-17, 2012 at LUMS, Lahore
  • Organized the 2nd German-Pakistani Workshop on Field and Assistive Robotics, on Jun 20-21, 2012 at Schloss Dagstuhl, Germany
  • Co-organized the 1st Pak-German Workshop on Field Robotics, on Oct 28-29, 2011 at LUMS, Lahore
  • Involved in organization of Autonome Mobile Systeme (AMS) 2007, Oct 18-19, 2007 at University of Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany

Research Collaborations

01/2017 – 12/2019
Detection of Fungus in Fields using Autonomous Robots (DeFFAR)
The project has been funded by DAAD (2017 – 2019). The goal of the project is to develop autonomous robots to detect fungus in agricultural fields. This requires research in image processing techniques and control of robots. The project is a collaboration between Robotics Research Lab, University of Kaiserslautern, Germany and Center of Robotics and Security (CoRaS), University of Central Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan.
01/2014 – 12/2016
Robotic Profiling for Clearing Watercourses (RoPWat)
The project has been funded by DAAD (2014 – 2016). The goal of the project is to develop semi-autonomous mobile robots to build profiles of canals. The proposed methodology will rely on 3D perception of the environment using various sensor systems. The project is collaboration between Robotics Research Lab, University of Kaiserslautern, Germany and CYPHYNETS, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Lahore, Pakistan.
01/2014 – 12/2016
Automated Weed Detection in Wheat Fields (AWeDeC)
The project has been funded by DAAD (2014 – 2016). The goal of the project is to determine weeds and unwanted plants in different crops. These weeds tremendously affect the yield of the crops and therefore estimations are required before spraying with pesticides. The project is collaboration between Robotics Research Lab, University of Kaiserslautern, Germany and National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences (FAST-NU), Lahore, Pakistan.
08/2011 – 12/2013
Autonomous Land Vehicle for Demining and Agriculture (ALVeDA)
The project has been funded by DAAD (2011 – 2013) and the goal of the project is to evaluate the performance of low cost sensor systems in autonomous mobile robots. The project is collaboration between Robotics Research Lab, University of Kaiserslautern, Germany, RICE and CYPHYNETS, Lahore University of Management Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan.

Awards

  • Alumni Achievement Award 2014. Awarded by OSAF at FAST-NU, Lahore
  • PhD Scholarship from University of Kaiserslautern, Germany (10/2011 – 09/2012)
  • HEC scholarship for PhD in Germany (08/2007 – 09/2011)
  • President Talent Scholarship in Pakistan (1993 – 1995)

Extra-Curricular Activities

  • Represented ZNT at various forums
  • Represented Robotics Research Lab at various national and international events
  • Demonstrated ARTOS in several exhibitions
  • Spokesperson of Regional Group Kaiserslautern DAAD-Freundeskreis, University of Kaiserslautern from July 2011 till February 2015

syed.atif@ucp.edu.pk
042-35880007 Ext: 324
Faculty of Information Technology, University of Central Punjab