The winners of the Future Prize 2017: Prof. Sami Haddadin, Dr. Simon Haddadin and Dipl. -Inf. Sven Parusel with a sensitive and intuitive robot assistant. (Photo: Ansgar Pudenz)
The winners of the Future Prize 2017: Dipl.-Inf. Sven Parusel, Prof. Sami Haddadin und Dr. Simon Haddadin (f.l.) with a sensitive and intuitive robot assistant. (Photo: Ansgar Pudenz)

German President honours international robot expert Sami HaddadinHighly endowed German Future Prize 2017 for new TUM professor

Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has awarded the newly appointed professor of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) Sami Haddadin with the German Future Prize 2017. His project „Centre for Man - Robot Assistants for a Lighter Future" is thus regarded as a special achievement in technology and innovation. On 1 April 2018, Professor Sami Haddadin, an internationally renowned professor, will succeed TUM's call to the Chair of Robot Science and System Intelligence.

„Professor Haddadin has a key role in the overall strategy of TUM," said TUM President Prof. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, who initiated and promoted this appointment. Haddadin will establish the new Integrative Research Center „Munich School of Robotics and Machine Intelligence“.

Haddadin studied electrical engineering at TUM. Together with his team he developed a new concept for cost-effective, flexible and intuitively operated robots. It turns them into human helpers - and opens up a wide range of new applications for the cooperative mechanical assistant in robotics, for example in industry and in the support of elderly, sick or disabled people. Professor Sami Haddadin and his team received the German Future Prize 2017 for this development.

The team consists of Professor Dr. -Ing. Sami Haddadin (currently still Leibniz Universität Hannover), Dr. Simon Haddadin, Managing Director of Franka Emika GmbH (Munich) and Sven Parusel, Chief Engineer of Franka Emika GmbH. All three of them have been researching for years at the Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics at the German Aerospace Center (DLR). TUM professor Gerhard Hirzinger, Leibniz Prize winner 1995, was her mentor.

Sami Haddadin is now following the appointment of TUM to the newly created professorship for „Robotics Science and Systems Intelligence“ at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He also becomes a member of the Department of Informatics.

President Prof. Herrmann is looking forward to the prize winner: „With Sami Haddadin, we have gained a globally sought-after expert in robotics who excels at the interface between human-machine systems. We are all the more delighted to receive his honourable award with the Future Prize of the Federal President.“

Three teams were nominated for the German Future Prize in Munich in September 2017. With this award, the Federal President honours groundbreaking research and development projects. The jury's decision is based on the scientific and technical degree of innovation and the potential to turn this achievement into sustainable workplaces. The prize is worth 250,000 euros.  

Technical University of Munich

Sabine Letz/ Paul Hellmich

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