About

I am an Assistant Professor at The George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology. A departmental profile is here. I am affiliated with The Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines.

I was a postdoc fellow working with Professor Scott Kuindersma at the Agile Robotics Laboratory, Computer Science, SEAS, Harvard University. I received my Ph.D. from the Human Centered Robotics Laboratory (HCR Lab) with Professor Luis Sentis, Mechanical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin in 2016. I obtained my Master degree from HCR Lab in 2013 and Robotics Portfolio Program Degree in 2016, at UT Austin.

I received my Bachelor degree in Automation, Department of Control Science and Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology in 2011. During 2009-2011, I worked as an undergraduate researcher at the Institute of Intelligent Control and Systems under the supervision of Professor Huijun Gao and Professor Lixian Zhang.

We are hiring highly motivated graduate students, postdocs, and visiting scholars at Georgia Tech. Candidates with backgrounds in robotics, optimization, machine learning, and control are preferred. If you are interested in my research and joining my lab, please send an email to ye.zhao@me.gatech.edu. We will get back to you soon if your background could be a good match.


My research interests lie broadly in planning, control, optimization, and machine learning algorithms of highly dynamic, under-actuated, autonomous, and human-centered robots. Specific topics I've been dedicated to center on:

(i) robust trajectory optimization of contact-rich locomotion and manipulation,

(ii) distributed optimization algorithms and model predictive control,

(iii) optimal motion planning of legged locomotion over rough terrain,

(iv) provably-correct task planning for whole-body locomotion,

(v) whole-body control and impedance control for series elastic actuated robots,

(vi) data-driven approaches for robust locomotion planning and control.

I am especially interested in computationally efficient optimization algorithms for challenging robotics problems, for which robust, autonomous, agile, and real-time performance are formally guaranteed. My long-term goal is to mature and generalize these approaches and algorithms for compliant and collaborative humanoid and mobile robots, and human assistive devices, operating in cluttered environments and working alongside humans.

My postdoc project was funded by Draper and collaborated with Toyota Research Institute (TRI).

My Ph.D. research projects were funded by Office of Naval Research (ONR) and NASA, National Robotics Initiative (NRI).

A full version of my CV is available upon request. Here is a short bio. My Chinese name is here.