Optimal Coordination Systems

Head: Dr. Denis Gillet
Research associates: Dr. Christophe Salzmann and Dr. Grégory François
PhD students: Mr. Damien Perritaz, Mr. Alain Bock and Ms. Laleh Makarem
Master students: Mr. Daniel Nellen and Mr. Benjamin Fankhauser


The current focus in Optimal Coordination Systems is on metrics and structures definition for the real-time operation of distributed devices where the dynamics matters, with application to autonomous transportation systems, insulin delivery for the treatment of diabetes, as well as teleoperation and supervision of mechatronic systems. The underlying academic disciplines are Distributed Control, Hierarchical Control, and Telematics. The React Group is affiliated with the EPFL Transportation Center

Challenge: How active devices (systems, agents) can react timely and adequately to changes in context using distributed sensors and actuators ?

Objective: Guarantee adaptability, efficiency and reliability of distributed active devices with respect to operation, interaction, and context.


related publicationsrelated research projects related students projects

Ongoing Projects


Population-Based Modeling and Semi-Autonomous Insulin Delivery for the Treatment of Diabetes

Denis GilletGrégory FrançoisAlain Bock

Keywords : Diabetes, Insulin Delivery, Modeling, Population-based Estimation, Stochastic Modeling, Optimal Control, Predictive Control

This project aims at developing a model-based control system to ease the treatment of patients with Type 1 diabetes. Different model types and parameters estimation strategies are considered and evaluated. The models account for meal types, physical activities, stress, as well as other patients’ conditions. These models are validated using clinical data. It is also envisioned to exploit the models for semi-autonomous insulin delivery with wearable optimal or predictive control devices.


Hierarchical Traffic Coordination of Automated Guided Vehicles

Denis Gillet,Ms. Laleh Makarem, Hajir Roozbehani, Sylvain Rudaz

Keywords : Intelligent Transportation Systems, Autonomous Agents, Automated Guided Vehicles

Electric Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) operating on roads have a high potential for reducing CO2 emissions and traffic congestion in intermodality areas. However and despite years of research and development, actual deployment is still limited. In this project innovative solutions are investigated for overcoming limiting factors, especially those related to platooning, overtaking, crossing, and energy supply. Advanced maneuvering solutions relying on hierarchical control structures and dynamical optimization will lead to an increase in vehicle density and speed.


6th sense

Denis Gillet, Christophe Salzmann, Damien Perritaz

Keywords : Quality of Perception; Wearable Systems; Augmented reality; Adaptation;

The 6th sense project aims at investigating advanced context-aware and adaptive end-to-end technologies to develop next-generation wearable supervision systems for industrial plant operators. It is carried out in collaboration with the University of Fribourg and the University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland. The 6th sense project is supported by the Hasler Foundation in the context of its man-machine interaction research program. [More]

Past Projects



Denis Gillet, Philippe Müllhaupt, Yvan Michellod

Keywords : Exoplanets; Differential Delay Lines

The Automatic Control Laboratory and the Robotic Systems Laboratory colaborate with the Geneva Observatory in the framework of the PRIMA ESO project to develop a Differential Delay Line for the PRIMA/VLTI facility at ESO. The goal of this new instrument is to contribute to speed up the implementation of this astrometric facility with respect to ESO’s current plan and to enable an early start of high-precision astrometric observations for extra-solar planets detection. [More]


Hierarchical Optimization of Solar Thermal Systems Using Online Weather Forecasts

Denis Gillet, Thierry Prud’homme

Keywords : Optimal Control, Hybrid Systems, Solar Thermal Systems, Hot Water Production, Heating Systems, Weather Forecasts

In this project, systems that use solar energy to provide the users with hot water are considered. An auxiliary heater is used when the solar energy is not able to meet the users’ requirements. The goal in this projects is to maximise the part of solar energy in final energy balances at the same time maximising the comfort. This is described by an optimal control problem and is solved using dynamic models of heat exchangers and the building. These models have been developed and the parameters have been identified on two pilot plants located at the Ecole d’ingenieurs d’Yverdon (EIVD). The one-day weather forecasts, provided on-line by the Swiss Meteorological Institute (SMI), are also used. Two systems are under investigation in this project. The first one is a solar domestic hot water system. The second one is called a combi-system, which provides the users with hot water in addition to heating the building.