Tan Chen, Ph.D.
Director, Robotics, Locomotion, and Applied Control (RoLAC) Lab
Assistant Professor
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Michigan Technological University

Phone: (906) 487-2866
Email: tanchen (at) mtu.edu

Openings Fall24/Spring25

Research Interests

I am broadly interested in complex dynamics and applied control of robots, such as legged robots and manipulators. My plan is to merge nonlinear geometric control approaches with optimization and machine learning tools to develop robust and safe controllers for real-world robot applications.

Biographical Sketch

Assistant Professor, Michigan Tech, 2022 - present
Postdoctoral Associate, Coordinated Science Laboratory, UIUC, 2021 - 2022
Ph.D. Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, Notre Dame, 2021
M.S. Mechanical Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, 2016
M.Eng. (dual Master's program) Optimisation et Automatisation des Processus Industriels, Mines Douai, 2014
B.S. Mechanical Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, 2013


04/2024 I was invited to attend the 2024 NSF FRR-NRI PI Meeting. Thanks to NSF and the organizers.
04/2024 I received the NSF CRII Award. Thanks, NSF!
04/2024 Our lab received a grant from NASA. Prof. Steven Elmer (KIP) is the co-PI on the project. Thanks, NASA!
12/2023 Shivayogi (MS), Dana (BS), and Anders (BS) have completed their degrees. Congratulations! They will further pursue their studies and research in our graduate program and our lab.
12/2023 I was invited to give a talk at the KIP seminar hosted by the Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology.
11/2023 We took our robot dog Go1 outdoors and conducted extensive tests to evaluate its current walking performance on diverse terrains such as forests and dunes. Check the videos!
10/2023 Shivayogi gave a poster presentation on RL control for legged locomotion at IROS 2023, and won the third prize in Showcase [AI] Student Poster Competition organized by ICC. Congratulations, Shivayogi!
07/2023 Our lab host a tour to the students in grades 6-11 as part of the Summer Youth Program (SYP) at Michigan Tech. Thanks to Shivayogi and Dana for helping showcase our lab and robots!
06/2023 I was invited to visit TU Darmsdadt, DLR - Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics, and Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems. Thanks for the hosting and the support from DAAD.
05/2023 I served as a co-chair for the session "Nonholonomic Systems" in American Control Conference and gave a presentation on leveraging time-reversal symmetry for global control of UMS.
04/2023 Fabian Beck from German Aerospace Center (DLR), Germany was invited to give a guest lecture in my Digital and Nonlinear Control class. Thanks, Fabian!
03/2023 Ryan received the 2023 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) Award. Congratulations, Ryan!
11/2022 Our lab received the REF award on bipedal robot research. Thanks to the Vice President for Research Office.
08/2022 I have joined the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Michigan Technological University as an Assistant Professor.