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Nikhil Deshpande

Researcher

Research Line

Advanced Robotics

Center

IIT Central Research Lab Genova

Contacts

+39 010 71781 805
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About

I am currently leading the VICARIO project which will create next-generation, collaborative teleoperation systems for intuitive operation in hazard-prone environments and industry. Specifically, the objectives are the development and integration of technologies including: (i) novel hydraulic quadruped field robot; (ii) new dexterous robotic manipulator arm; (iii) novel master hand exoskeleton haptic device; and (iv) new user interaction interfaces with augmented and virtual reality systems. 

My previous research focused on the design and development of robot-assisted surgical tools for microsurgery, particularly, transoral laser microsurgery. The research also involved holistic design, development, and assessment of novel devices and intuitive user interfaces for robot-assisted technologies using GUI software, computer vision techniques, and human factors and usability studies. My research background is in distributed wireless sensing, autonomous navigation, sensor fusion, mechanical design, and user interface development.

Originally from Pune, India, I graduated with a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the Government College of Engineering (COEP), in 2003. The bug to tinker with robots led me to an applications engineering position with Rockwell Automation India Ltd., in New Delhi, India, which introduced me to the basics of plant automation and industrial robots for manufacturing processes and automobile assembly lines. The curiosity to design robots and improve them got me to pursue graduate studies in USA.

Beginning with my Master’s in Integrated Manufacturing Systems Engineering at North Carolina State University (NCSU) in 2005, I got the opportunity to design and program mobile robots, and work on state-of-the-art technologies including wireless sensor networks. Here, under the guidance of Prof. Steve Jackson, I developed a smart-home automation solution for in-situ wall-moisture sensing using low-power WSNs. Subsequently, I joined the Center for Robotics and Intelligent Machines (CRIM) at NCSU to continue on for my PhD in Electrical Engineering with Prof. Edward Grant. My dissertation was on sensor-network assisted mobile robot navigation. 

In the summer of 2011, I interned at the Robert Bosch Robotics Research Center in California, working manipulator state estimation using low cost sensing technology - accelerometers and gyroscopes. I collaborated with the Stanford Biorobotics group (Prof. Kenneth Salisbury) and adapted my solution for the PR2 robot arm as well as the new low-cost Stanford Arm.

Projects

(1) "Sistemi Cibernetici Collaborativi - Teleoperation" (2017 - 2020), in collaborazione con INAIL ("Istituto Nazionale per l'Assicurazione contro gli Infortuni sul Lavoro") CUP J32F17000950005

(2) μRALP (2012 - 2014, www.microralp.eu)

European Union Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2013 – Challenge 2 – Cognitive Systems, Interaction, Robotics

Selected Publications

Book Chapters:

  1. Leonardo S. Mattos, Diego Pardo, Emidio Olivieri, Giacinto Barresi, Jesus Ortiz, Loris Fichera, Nikhil Deshpande, and Veronica Penza, "Microsurgery Systems", in The E-Medicine, E-Health, M-Health, Telemedicine, and Telehealth Handbook (Two Volume Set), Eren H., Webster J. G., (eds.), CRC Press / Taylor & Francis Group, 2015.
  2. Thomas Henderson, Hongchang Peng, Nikhil Deshpande, and Edward Grant, "The Role of Symmetry in Structural Bootstrapping", in Bridges between the Methodological and Practical Work of the Robotics and Cognitive Systems Communities - From Sensors to Concepts, Amirat Y., Chibani A., Zarri G. P. (eds.), Springer series on Intelligent Systems Reference Library, December 2011.


Journal Publications:

  1. Nikhil Deshpande, Giorgio Peretti, Francesco Mora, Luca Guastini, Jinoh Lee, Giacinto Barresi, Darwin G. Caldwell, Leonardo S. Mattos, "Design and Study of a Next Generation Computer Assisted System for Transoral Laser Microsurgery", OTO Open, Vol. , Iss. , SAGE Publications Inc., 2018, pp. .
  2. Alperen Acemoglu, Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, "Towards a Magnetically-Actuated Laser Scanner for Endoscopic Microsurgeries", Journal of Medical Robotics Research, Vol. 3, Iss. 2, World Scientific, 2018, pp. .
  3. Nikhil Deshpande, Jesús Ortiz, Ioannis Sarakoglou, Claudio Semini, Nikos Tsagarakis, Anais Brygo, Jorge Fernandez, Marco Frigerio, Lorenzo Saccares, Stefano Toxiri, and Darwin G. Caldwell, "Next Generation Collaborative Robotic Systems for Industrial Safety and Health", in Safety and Security Engineering VII, C. A. Brebbia, F. Garzia, M. Lombardi (eds.), WIT Transactions on the Built Environment, Vol. 174, 2017, pp. 187-200.
  4. Nikhil Deshpande, Edward Grant, Thomas C. Henderson, and Mark Draelos, "Autonomous navigation using received signal strength and bearing-only pseudogradient interpolation", Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Vol. 75, 2015, pp. 129-144.
  5. Leonardo S. Mattos, Nikhil Deshpande, Giacinto Barresi, Luca Guastini, and Giorgio Peretti, "A Novel Computerized Surgeon-Machine Interface for Robot-Assisted Laser Phonomicrosurgery", The Laryngoscope, Vol. 124, Iss. 8, DOI: 10.1002/lary.24566, John Wiley & Sons, Aug. 2014, pp. 1887-94.
  6. Nikhil Deshpande, Edward Grant, and Thomas C. Henderson, "Target Localization and Autonomous Navigation using Wireless Sensor Networks  - A Pseudo-Gradient Algorithm Approach", IEEE Systems Journal Special Issue on Sensor Networks for Advanced Localization Systems, Vol. 8, Iss. 1, March 2014, pp. 93-103.
  7. Kyle Luthy, Edward Grant, Nikhil Deshpande, and Thomas C. Henderson “Perimeter Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks”, Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Volume 60, Issue 2, February 2012, pp. 266-277.
 
Conference Publications:
  1. Lucia Schiatti, Jacopo Tessadori, Nikhil Deshpande, Giacinto Barresi, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Human in the Loop of Robot Learning: EEG-based Reward Signal for Target Identification and Reaching Task", In Proceedings of 2018 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2018), pp. -, May 21-25, 2018, Brisbane, Australia.
  2. Manish Chauhan, Nikhil Deshpande, Giacinto Barresi, Claudio Pacchierotti, Domenico Prattichizzo, Darwin G. Caldwell, and Leonardo S. Mattos, “Design and control of a novel robotic microsurgical forceps for Transoral Laser Microsurgery”, In Proceedings of 2017 IEEE International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2017), pp. 737-742, July 3-7, 2017, Munich, Germany.
  3. Nikhil Deshpande, Manish Chauhan, Claudio Pacchierotti, Domenico Prattichizzo, Darwin G. Caldwell, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Robot-Assisted Microsurgical Forceps with Haptic Feedback for Transoral Laser Microsurgery", In Proceedings of 38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC 2016), pp. 5156-59, Aug. 16-20, 2016, Orlando, USA.
  4. Manish Chauhan, Giacinto Barresi, Nikhil Deshpande, Darwin G. Caldwell, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Novel Modular 2-DOF Microsurgical Forceps for Transoral Laser Microsurgeries: Ergonomic Design and Preliminary Evaluation", In Proceedings of 38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC 2016), pp. 5216-19, Aug. 16-20, 2016, Orlando, USA.
  5. Manish Chauhan, Leonardo S. Mattos, Darwin G. Caldwell, and Nikhil Deshpande, "Design and Modelling of Novel Modular 2 DOF Microsurgical Forceps for Trans-Oral Laser Microsurgeries", In Proceedings of 2016 IEEE International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics (AIM 2016), pp. 1339-44, July 12-16, 2016, Banff, Canada.
  6. Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, and Darwin G. Caldwell, "New Motorized Micromanipulator for Robot-Assisted Laser Phonomicrosurgery", In Proceedings of 2015 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2015), pp. 4755-4760, May 26-30, 2015, Seattle, USA. 
  7. Nikhil Deshpande, Edward Grant, Mark Draelos, and Thomas C. Henderson, "Received Signal Strength based Bearing-only Robot Navigation in a Sensor Network field", In Proceedings of 2014 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2014), pp. 4618-4623, Sept. 14-18, 2014, Chicago, USA.
  8. Nikhil Deshpande, Jesus Ortiz, Darwin G. Caldwell, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Enhanced Computer-Assisted Laser Microsurgeries with a “Virtual Microscope” based surgical system", In Proceedings of 2014 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2014), pp. 4194-4199 , May 31-Jun 7, 2014, Hong Kong, China.
  9. Giacinto Barresi, Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, Andrea Brogni, Giulio Dagnino, Luca Guastini, Giorgio Peretti, Darwin G. Caldwell, "Comparative Usability and Performance Evaluation of Surgeon Interfaces in Laser Phonomicrosurgery", In Proceedings of 2013 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2013), pp. 3610-3615, Nov 3-7, 2013, Tokyo, Japan.
  10. Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, Giacinto Barresi, Andrea Brogni, Giulio Dagnino, Luca Guastini, Giorgio Peretti, Darwin G. Caldwell, "Imaging based Metrics for Performance Assessment in Laser Phonomicrosurgery", In Proceedings of 2013 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2013), pp. 4850 - 4856, May 6-10, 2013, Karlsruhe, Germany.
  11. Philip Roan, Nikhil Deshpande, Yizhou Wang, and Benjamin Pitzer, "Manipulator State Estimation with Low-cost Accelerometers and Gyroscopes",  In Proceedings of 2012 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2012), pp. 4822-4827, Oct. 7-12, 2012, Vilamoura, Portugal.
  12. Mark Draelos, Nikhil Deshpande, and Edward Grant, "The Kinect up close: Adaptations for Short-range Imaging", In Proceedings of 2012 IEEE International Conference on Multisensor Fusion and Integration for Intelligent Systems (MFI 2012), pp. 251-256, Sept. 13-15, 2012, Hamburg, Germany.
  13. Thomas C. Henderson, Elaine Cohen, Anshul Joshi, Edward Grant, Mark Draelos, and Nikhil Deshpande, "Symmetry as a Basis for Perceptual Fusion", In Proceedings of 2012 IEEE International Conference on Multisensor Fusion and Integration for Intelligent Systems (MFI 2012), pp. 101-107, Sept. 13-15, 2012, Hamburg, Germany.
  14. Nikhil Deshpande, Edward Grant, and Thomas C. Henderson, "Target-directed Navigation using Wireless Sensor Networks and Implicit Surface Interpolation", In Proceedings of 2012 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2012), pp. 457-462, May 14-18, 2012, St. Paul, USA.
  15. Nikhil Deshpande, Edward Grant, and Thomas C. Henderson, "Experiments with a “Pseudo-Gradient” Algorithm for Target Localization Using Wireless Sensor Networks", In Proceedings of 2010 IEEE International Conference on Multisensor Fusion and Integration for Intelligent Systems (MFI 2010), pp. 74-79, Sept. 5-7, 2010, Salt Lake City, USA.


Abstracts

  1. Luca Guastini, Leonardo S. Mattos, Nikhil Deshpande, Francesco Mora, and Giorgio Peretti, "Innovative Laser Control in Transoral Laser Microsurgery", In AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting, September 2017, Chicago, USA.
  2. Nikhil Deshpande, Luca Guastini, Francesco Mora, Giacinto Barresi, Leonardo S. Mattos, and Giorgio Peretti, “RALP: Robot-assisted Laser Phonomicrosurgery provides precise and intuitive laser micromanipulation for uniform resections”, In 21st ENT World Congress (IFOS 2017), 24-28 June, 2017, Paris, France.
  3. Luca Guastini, Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, Francesco Mora, and Giorgio Peretti, "Novel Robotic Micromanipulator for Transoral Laser Surgery", In AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting, September 2015, Dallas, USA.
  4. Nikhil Deshpande, Luca Guastini, Leonardo S. Mattos, and Giorgio Peretti, "Novel Micromanipulator for Robot-assisted Microsurgical System for Transoral Laser Surgeries", In World Congress on Larynx Cancer, 26-30 July, 2015, Cairns, Australia.
  5. Luca Guastini, Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, and Giorgio Peretti, "Next Generation Robot Enhanced Microsurgical System for Transoral Laser Surgeries", In 3rd Congress of European ORL-HNS, 7-11 June, 2015, Prague, Czech Republic. 
  6. Luca Guastini, Leonardo S. Mattos, Nikhil Deshpande, Jesus Ortiz, Francesco Mora, and Giorgio Peretti, "Redesign of the Microsurgical Interface with a Novel, Computer-Assisted “Virtual Microscope” System in Laser Phonomicrosurgery", In AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting, September 2014, Orlando, USA.
 
Technical Reports:
  1. Thomas Henderson, Hongchang Peng, Krzysztof Sikorski, Nikhil Deshpande, and Edward Grant, "Symmetry: A Basis for Sensorimotor Reconstruction", Technical Report UUCS-11-011, School of Computing, University of Utah, May, 2011, Salt Lake City, USA.
 
Workshops and Posters:
  1. Manish Chauhan, Nikhil Deshpande, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Design of a Robotic Microsurgical Forceps for Transoral Laser Microsurgery", In 7th Joint Workshop on New Technologies for Computer/Robot Assisted Surgery, (CRAS 2017), Sept. 14-15, 2017, Montpellier, France.
  2. Alperen Acemoglu, Nikhil Deshpande, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "A Magnetic Laser Scanner for Non-contact Endoscopic Ablations", In Hamlyn Symposium on Medical Robotics, 25-28 June, 2017, London, UK.
  3. Manish Chauhan, Nikhil Deshpande, Darwin G. Caldwell, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Design of robot assisted microsurgical forceps for Transoral Laser Microsurgery", In 6th Joint Workshop on New Technologies for Computer/Robot Assisted Surgery, (CRAS 2016), Sept. 12-14, 2016, Pisa, Italy.
  4. Manish Chauhan, Nikhil Deshpande, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Novel modular 2-DOF microsurgical forceps for Trans-oral Laser Microsurgeries", In 5th Joint Workshop on New Technologies for Computer/Robot Assisted Surgery, (CRAS 2015), Sept. 10-12, 2015, Brussels, Belgium.
  5. Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, and Darwin G. Caldwell, "Motorized 2-DOF Spherical Orienting Mechanism for Laser Micromanipulation in Trans-oral Laser Microsurgeries", In Hamlyn Symposium on Medical Robotics, 20-23 June, 2015, London, UK.
  6. Nikhil Deshpande, Jesus Ortiz, Leonardo S. Mattos, and Darwin G. Caldwell, "A 'Virtual Microscope' Surgeon Interface in Computer-Assisted Laser Microsurgeries", In Co-SuR Workshop on Cognitive Surgical Robotics: From Virtual Fixtures to Advanced Cooperative Control, 2013 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2013), Nov 7, 2013, Tokyo, Japan. 
  7. Loris Fichera, Diego Pardo, Nikhil Deshpande, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "On-line estimation of ablation depth during CO2-laser exposure", In Co-SuR Workshop on Cognitive Surgical Robotics: From Virtual Fixtures to Advanced Cooperative Control, 2013 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2013), Nov 7, 2013, Tokyo, Japan.
  8. Nikhil Deshpande, Giacinto Barresi, and Leonardo S. Mattos, "Human-factor oriented approach to improve surgeon-machine interface design", In 1st Russian-German Conference on Biomedical Engineering (RGC 2013), 23-26 October, 2013, Hannover, Germany.
  9. Giacinto Barresi, Leonardo S. Mattos, Nikhil Deshpande, Andrea Brogni, and Darwin G. Caldwell, "Comparative Ergonomic Evaluation of User Interfaces for Laser Phonomicrosurgery", In Eurosurge Workshop on Evaluating Effectiveness and Acceptance of Robots in Surgery: User-centered Design and Economic Factors, 2013 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, (ICRA 2013), May 6-10, 2013, Karlsruhe, Germany.
  10. Giacinto Barresi, Nikhil Deshpande, Leonardo S. Mattos, Luca Guastini, Giorgio Peretti, and Darwin G. Caldwell, "Usability and Performance: Comparative Evaluation of Surgeon Interfaces in Laser Phonomicrosurgery", In 3rd Joint Workshop on New Technologies for Computer/Robot Assisted Surgery, (CRAS 2013), Sept. 11-13, 2013, Verona, Italy.
  11. Thomas Henderson, Hongchang Peng, Krzysztof Sikorski, Nikhil Deshpande, and Edward Grant, "The Cognitive Symmetry Engine: An Active Approach to Knowledge",  In Workshop on Knowledge Representation for Autonomous Robots, 2011 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS 2011), Sept. 25-30, 2011, San Francisco, USA.
  12. Nikhil Deshpande, "WSN-assisted Multi-robot Coordination in Event Response Mechanisms", In Workshop on Smart Sensor Networks and Robotics, 2010 IEEE International Conference on Multisensor Fusion and Integration for Intelligent Systems, (MFI 2010), Sept. 5-7, 2010, Salt Lake City, USA.

Awards

 

  • Mentored Teaching Assistantship - NCSU - 2011
  • Alumni Graduate Fellowship Award - NCSU - 2005
  • Best Graduate Trainee Award - Rockwell Automation - 2004

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I numeri di IIT

L’Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) è una fondazione di diritto privato - cfr. determinazione Corte dei Conti 23/2015 “IIT è una fondazione da inquadrare fra gli organismi di diritto pubblico con la scelta di un modello di organizzazione di diritto privato per rispondere all’esigenza di assicurare procedure più snelle nella selezione non solo nell’ambito nazionale dei collaboratori, scienziati e ricercatori ”.

IIT è sotto la vigilanza del Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca e del Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze ed è stato istituito con la Legge 326/2003. La Fondazione ha l'obiettivo di promuovere l'eccellenza nella ricerca di base e in quella applicata e di favorire lo sviluppo del sistema economico nazionale. La costruzione dei laboratori iniziata nel 2006 si è conclusa nel 2009.

Lo staff complessivo di IIT conta circa 1440 persone. L’area scientifica è rappresentata da circa l’85% del personale. Il 45% dei ricercatori proviene dall’estero: di questi, il 29% è costituito da stranieri provenienti da oltre 50 Paesi e il 16% da italiani rientrati. Oggi il personale scientifico è composto da circa 60 principal investigators, circa 110 ricercatori e tecnologi di staff, circa 350 post doc, circa 500 studenti di dottorato e borsisti, circa 130 tecnici. Oltre 330 posti su 1400 creati su fondi esterni. Età media 34 anni. 41% donne / 59 % uomini.

Nel 2015 IIT ha ricevuto finanziamenti pubblici per circa 96 milioni di euro (80% del budget), conseguendo fondi esterni per 22 milioni di euro (20% budget) provenienti da 18 progetti europei17 finanziamenti da istituzioni nazionali e internazionali, circa 60 progetti industriali

La produzione di IIT ad oggi vanta circa 6990 pubblicazioni, oltre 130 finanziamenti Europei e 11 ERC, più di 350 domande di brevetto attive, oltre 12 start up costituite e altrettante in fase di lancio. Dal 2009 l’attività scientifica è stata ulteriormente rafforzata con la creazione di dieci centri di ricerca nel territorio nazionale (a Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) e internazionale (MIT ed Harvard negli USA) che, unitamente al Laboratorio Centrale di Genova, sviluppano i programmi di ricerca del piano scientifico 2015-2017.

IIT: the numbers

Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia (IIT) is a public research institute that adopts the organizational model of a private law foundation. IIT is overseen by Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca and Ministero dell'Economia e delle Finanze (the Italian Ministries of Education, Economy and Finance).  The Institute was set up according to Italian law 326/2003 with the objective of promoting excellence in basic and applied research andfostering Italy’s economic development. Construction of the Laboratories started in 2006 and finished in 2009.

IIT has an overall staff of about 1,440 people. The scientific staff covers about 85% of the total. Out of 45% of researchers coming from abroad 29% are foreigners coming from more than 50 countries and 16% are returned Italians. The scientific staff currently consists of approximately 60 Principal Investigators110 researchers and technologists350 post-docs and 500 PhD students and grant holders and 130 technicians. External funding has allowed the creation of more than 330 positions . The average age is 34 and the gender balance proportion  is 41% female against 59% male.

In 2015 IIT received 96 million euros in public funding (accounting for 80% of its budget) and obtained 22 million euros in external funding (accounting for 20% of its budget). External funding comes from 18 European Projects, other 17 national and international competitive projects and approximately 60 industrial projects.

So far IIT accounts for: about 6990 publications, more than 130 European grants and 11 ERC grants, more than 350 patents or patent applications12 up start-ups and as many  which are about to be launched. The Institute’s scientific activity has been further strengthened since 2009 with the establishment of 11 research nodes throughout Italy (Torino, Milano, Trento, Parma, Roma, Pisa, Napoli, Lecce, Ferrara) and abroad (MIT and Harvard University, USA), which, along with the Genoa-based Central Lab, implement the research programs included in the 2015-2017 Strategic Plan.