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control the JPL Athlete robot, a six-legged/wheeled lunar rover that performs heavy lifting and manipulation tasks by using its legs as arms.

need for distributed operations, and inter-operability with legacy systems. This new focus will facilitate the adaptation of these schemes into networks used in practice.

ASL faculty are Brian Williams and Nicholas Roy. Visit the Model-based Embedded Systems group at and the Robust Robotics Group at

Robust network design is another exciting area of recent pioneering research by the group. In particular, the group has been developing a new paradigm for the design of highly robust networks that can survive a massive disruption that may result from natural disasters or intentional attack. The work examines the impact of large-scale failures on network survivability and design, with a focus on interdependencies between different networked infrastructures, such as telecommunication networks, social networks, and the power grid. The group’s research crosses disciplinary boundaries by combining techniques from network optimization, queueing theory, graph theory, network protocols and algorithms, hardware design, and physical layer communications.

COMMUNICATIONS AND NETWORKING RESEARCH GROUP The Communications and Networking Research Group’s primary goal is design of network architectures that are cost effective, scalable, and meet emerging needs for high data-rate and reliable communications. To meet emerging critical needs for military communications, space exploration, and internet access for remote and mobile users, future aerospace networks will depend upon satellite, wireless, and optical components. Satellite networks are essential for providing access to remote locations lacking in communications infrastructure, wireless networks are needed for communication between untethered nodes, such as autonomous air vehicles, and optical networks are critical to the network backbone and in high performance local area networks. Over the past few years, the group has been developing efficient network control algorithms for wireless networks (e.g., flowcontrol, routing, link scheduling). A recent focus has been on the design practical network control algorithms, based on the theories developed by Professor Eytan Modiano and his students over the last decade. These algorithms have been shown to optimize network performance (e.g., maximize throughput and utility) but so far have been largely limited to being a theoretical framework. With funding from the DoD and NSF, the group has turned its attention to the design of algorithms that take into account practical considerations such as hardware limitations, the


AEROASTRO 2015-2016

Eytan Modiano directs the Communications and Networking Research Group. Visit the Communications and Networking Research Group at

GAS TURBINE LABORATORY The Gas Turbine Laboratory’s mission is to advance the state-ofthe-art in fluid machinery for power and propulsion. The research is focused on advanced propulsion systems, energy conversion and power, with activities in computational, theoretical, and experimental study of loss mechanisms and unsteady flows in fluid machinery, dynamic behavior and stability of compression systems, instrumentation and diagnostics, advanced centrifugal compressors and pumps for energy conversion, gas turbine engine and fluid machinery noise reduction and aero-acoustics, novel aircraft and propulsion system concepts for reduced environmental impact.

MIT AeroAstro annual magazine 2015-2016Aeroastro 2015 16  

Annual magazine review of MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics Department research and educational initiatives.

MIT AeroAstro annual magazine 2015-2016Aeroastro 2015 16  

Annual magazine review of MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics Department research and educational initiatives.