Johannes Waibel

PhD Candidate in Robotics, Control, and Intelligent Systems

Automatic Control Laboratory


Johannes is a PhD student at the Automatic Control Lab at EPFL. He studied Aerospace Engineering at the University of Stuttgart with focus on systems, control, and information technologies, and obtained his M.Sc. degree in 2020. After an initial exchange semester, he returned to EPFL for his master’s project on Airborne Wind Energy. His research interests are about the identification and control of dynamic systems under uncertain real-world conditions as well as making theoretical concepts accessible for practical application.

Project description

The large-scale goal of this project is to develop methods for safe identification of a nonlinear system during operation under possibly strong uncertainty and disturbance. With Nonlinear Model Predictive Control, the system shall then be controlled at a maximum safe performance given the achieved identification certainty. For the test case of a small fixed-wing Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, the vision is to take off without prior aerodynamic identification, perform autonomous identification by flying suitable maneuvers, and finally execute acrobatic figures close to the limits of the system. All computation shall be online on an embedded computer which makes computational tractability of the employed methods crucial.