Ames Research Center, NASA, USA
Data și ora: 2021-07-14 18:00
Locația: Microsoft Teams


Ara Nefian is a Senior Scientist with KBR at NASA Ames. Ara is on the science team for Curiosity mission and future (2024) VIPER mission to the Moon. He led the Lunar Mapping and Modeling project at NASA Ames and is conducting research in 3D image modeling from planetary data. His general interests are in the area of computer vision, machine learning, image classification and retrieval and robotics. He co-authored more than 200 research papers and holds 20 US and international patents.

In the past he was with Intel Research Labs in Santa Clara, CA involved in several research projects including face and gesture recognition, audio-visual speech processing, web image clustering and bioinformatics. In 2005 Ara was part of the computer vision group within the Stanford racing team (Stanley) that won the DARPA Autonomous Navigation Grand Challenge.

Ara holds a BS from Politehnica University Bucharest (1993) and a MSEE and PhD from Georgia Institute of Technology (1999).


Autonomous rovers will enable exploration, resource utilization and ultimately colonization of new worlds. Independently or together with astronaut crews, rovers investigate extreme environments characterized by strong illumination conditions, low gravity, unknown surface characteristics and lack of localization infrastructure. This talk focuses on computer vision approaches for mapping, rover navigation and hazard avoidance suitable for current and future autonomous planetary exploration.