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Vezzani G.,Italian Institute of Technology | Pattacini U.,Italian Institute of Technology | Battistelli G.,Universit& and x00E0 | Chisci L.,Universit& and x00E0 | Natale L.,Italian Institute of Technology
IEEE Transactions on Robotics | Year: 2017

This paper addresses 6-DOF (degree-of-freedom) tactile localization, i.e., the pose estimation of tridimensional objects using tactile measurements. This estimation problem is fundamental for the operation of autonomous robots that are often required to manipulate and grasp objects whose pose is a priori unknown. The nature of tactile measurements, the strict time requirements for real-time operation, and the multimodality of the involved probability distributions pose remarkable challenges and call for advanced nonlinear filtering techniques. Following a Bayesian approach, this paper proposes a novel and effective algorithm, named memory unscented particle filter (MUPF), which solves 6-DOF localization recursively in real time by only exploiting contact point measurements. The MUPF combines a modified particle filter that incorporates a sliding memory of past measurements to better handle multimodal distributions, along with the unscented Kalman filter that moves the particles toward regions of the search space that are more likely with the measurements. The performance of the proposed MUPF algorithm has been assessed both in simulation and on a real robotic system equipped with tactile sensors (i.e., the iCub humanoid robot). The experiments show that the algorithm provides accurate and reliable localization even with a low number of particles and, hence, is compatible with real-time requirements. IEEE


Menini L.,University Of Rome & And X2018 | Possieri C.,Universit& and x00E0 | Tornambe A.,University of Rome Tor Vergata
IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control | Year: 2017

Sum of squares decompositions for positive semi-definite polynomials are usually computed numerically, using convex optimization solvers. The precision of the decompositions can be improved by increasing the number of digits used in the computations, but, when the number of variables is greater than the length (i.e., the minimum number of squares needed for the decomposition) of the polynomial, it is difficult to obtain an exact sum of squares decomposition with the existing methods. A new algorithm, which works well in “almost all” such cases, is proposed here. The results of randomly generated experiments are reported to compare the proposed algorithm with those based on convex optimization. IEEE


Marino A.,Open University Milton Keynes | Velotto D.,German Aerospace Center | Nunziata F.,Universit& and x00E0
IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing | Year: 2017

Satellite-based synthetic aperture radar (SAR) has been proven to be an effective tool for ship monitoring. Offshore platforms monitoring is a key topic for both safety and security of the maritime domain. However, the scientific literature oriented to the observation of offshore platforms using SAR imagery is very limited. This study is mostly focused on the analysis and understanding of the multipolarization behavior of platforms’ backscattering using dual-polarization X-band SAR imagery. This study is motivated by the fact that under low incidence angle and moderate wind conditions, copolarized channels may fail in detecting offshore platforms even when fine-resolution imagery is considered. This behavior has been observed on both medium- and high-resolution TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X SAR imagery, despite the fact that platforms consist of large metallic structures. Hence, a simple multipolarization model is proposed to analyze the platform backscattering. Model predictions are verified on TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X SAR imagery, showing that for acquisitions under low incidence angle, the platforms result in a reduced copolarized backscattered intensity even when fine resolution imagery is considered. Finally, several solutions to tackle this issue are proposed with concluding remark that the performance of offshore observation. IEEE


Zambelli C.,Universit& and x00E0 | Navarro G.,CEA Grenoble | Sousa V.,CEA Grenoble | Prejbeanu I.L.,CEA Grenoble | Perniola L.,CEA Grenoble
Proceedings of the IEEE | Year: 2017

The state-of-the-art solid-state drives (SSDs) now heterogeneously integrate nand Flash and dynamic random access memories (DRAMs) to partially hide the limitation of the nonvolatile memory technology. However, due to the increased request for storage density coupled with performance that positions the storage tier closer to the latency of the processing elements, nand Flash are becoming a serious bottleneck. DRAM as well are a limitation in the SSD reliability due to their vulnerability to the power loss events. Several emerging memory technologies are candidate to replace them, namely the storage class memories. Phase change memories and magnetic memories fall into this category. In this work, we review both technologies from the perspective of their possible application in future disk drives, opening up new computation paradigms as well as improving the storage characteristics in terms of latency and reliability. IEEE


Leo A.D.,Universit& and x00E0 | Cerri G.,Universit& and x00E0 | Russo P.,Universit& and x00E0 | Primiani V.M.,Universit& and x00E0
IEEE Transactions on Electromagnetic Compatibility | Year: 2017

A low-frequency experimental characterization of a multiple monopole-source-stirred reverberation chamber is presented and the results are compared to the prediction of an analytical model. At first quality factor was determined, then the statistic of the received power and Rician K-factor as well as the electric field uniformity and anisotropy. All the experimental results are in good agreement with the prediction of the analytical model, demonstrating its accuracy in designing a source-stirring chamber. IEEE


Iotti L.,Universit& and x00E0 | Mazzanti A.,Universit& and x00E0 | Svelto F.,Universit& and x00E0
IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits | Year: 2017

High-capacity wireless links at millimeter-Waves are candidate for backhaul infrastructure to small-cell mobile networks. However, the use of high-order modulation schemes sets challenging phase-noise specifications for integrated frequency synthesizers. Moreover, the use of adaptive modulation suggests local oscillators exploiting noise scaling, up to several decibel depending on channel conditions. In this paper, multi-core switch-coupled LC voltage-controlled oscillators are proposed to achieve ultra-low phase noise and scalable noise performance according to system requirements in a power-efficient way. A theoretical model investigating the effect of LC core component mismatches shows very good agreement with experiments. Design insights are provided, key in order to take effective advantage from the proposed low-noise technique. A quad-core ~20 GHz oscillator prototype, followed by a frequency quadrupler, has been realized in 55-nm BiCMOS technology. Measured performances are ~70-to-81 GHz frequency range with -106.5-dBc/Hz minimum phase noise at 1-MHz offset from an 80-GHz carrier with 50-mW power consumption and 1.2-V supply. To authors' knowledge, this is the lowest phase noise measured in the E-Band using integrated technologies and CMOS-compatible supplies. When noise requirements are relaxed, auxiliary cores are turned off rising phase noise by 6 dB but with power consumption reduced down to 18 mW only. IEEE


Spedicato S.,Universit& and x00E0 | Notarstefano G.,Universit& and x00E0
IEEE Transactions on Control Systems Technology | Year: 2017

In this paper, we present a novel strategy to compute minimum-time trajectories for quadrotors in constrained environments. In particular, we consider the motion in a given flying region with obstacles and take into account the physical limitations of the vehicle. Instead of approaching the optimization problem in its standard time-parameterized formulation, the proposed strategy is based on an appealing reformulation. Transverse coordinates, expressing the distance from a frame path, are used to parameterize the vehicle position and a spatial parameter is used as independent variable. This reformulation allows us to: 1) obtain a fixed horizon problem and 2) easily formulate (fairly complex) position constraints. The effectiveness of the proposed strategy is proven by numerical computations on two different illustrative scenarios. Moreover, the optimal trajectory generated in the second scenario is experimentally executed with a real nanoquadrotor in order to show its feasibility. IEEE


Hartman A.,Electrical and Space Engineering | Romano D.,Universit& and x00E0 | Antonini G.,Universit& and x00E0 | Ekman J.,Electrical and Space Engineering
IEEE Transactions on Electromagnetic Compatibility | Year: 2017

During recent years anisotropic materials have received an increasing interest and found important applications in the field of shielding and antennas. The anisotropy may be due to intrinsic properties, or as a consequence of mixing. Intentionally or not, the anisotropy impacts the electromagnetic (EM) behavior of a system. Therefore, it is desirable to be able to incorporate the anisotropic effects in an EM model, to allow design tasks and analysis. In this paper, the partial element equivalent circuit (PEEC) formulation is extended to handle nondispersive linear anisotropic dielectrics. The anisotropic dielectric PEEC cell is derived and the resulting PEEC equations are developed into a descriptor system form, which is well suited for implementation in SPICE-like solvers, and for reduction by model-order reduction techniques. A verification of the model is given by a numerical example of a patch antenna situated on an anisotropic substrate and the results are in good agreement with a finite-difference time-domain implementation. The proposed PEEC model is of interest for further work, i.e., in the modeling of setups involving mixtures of materials, with an orientational alignment, and engineered materials, encountered in different EM compatibility applications. IEEE


Orciani M.,Universit& and x00E0
Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents | Year: 2013

Scleroderma is a chronic systemic autoimmune disease (primarily of the skin) characterized by fibrosis (or hardening), vascular alterations and autoantibodies production.There are currently no effective therapies against this devastating and often lethal disorder. Despite the interest for the immunomodulatory effects of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in autoimmune diseases, the role of MSCs in scleroderma is still unknown. A pivotal role in scleroderma onset is played by oxidative stress associated with the accumulation of great amounts of reactive oxygen species (ROS). This study depicts some phenotypic and functional features of MSCs isolated from the skin of healthy and scleroderma patients; the ROS production and accumulation, the expression of ERK1/2 and the effects of the stimulation with PDGF, were analyzed in MSCs; results were compared to those observed in primary fibroblasts (Fbs) isolated from the same subjects. We found that the pro-oxidant environment exerted by scleroderma affects MSCs, which are still able to counteract the ROS accumulation by improving the antioxidant defenses. On the contrary, scleroderma fibroblasts show a disruption of these mechanisms, with consequent ROS increase and the activation of the cascade triggered by scleroderma auto-antibodies against PDGFR.


Esposito S.,Universit& and x00E0 | Ascolese B.,Universit& and x00E0 | Senatore L.,Universit& and x00E0 | Bosis S.,Universit& and x00E0 | And 3 more authors.
International journal of immunopathology and pharmacology | Year: 2014

Mevalonate kinase deficiency (MKD) is a rare autosomal recessive autoinflammatory metabolic disease that is caused by mutations in the MVK gene. Patients with MKD typically have an early onset in infancy. MKD is characterized by recurrent episodes of high fever, abdominal distress, diffuse joint pain, and skin rashes. In a subset of patients, MKD is also associated with elevated serum immunoglobulin D (IgD) levels (hyperimmunoglobulinemia D syndrome, HIDS). The clinical phenotype of MKD varies widely and depends on the severity of the impaired mevalonate kinase activity. Complete impairment results in the severe metabolic disease, mevalonic aciduria, while a partial deficiency results in a broad spectrum of clinical presentation, including HIDS. The precise molecular mechanisms behind the elevated serum IgD levels and inflammation that occurs in MKD remain unknown. Children who exhibit symptoms of MKD should be tested for mutations in the MKD gene. However, the complexity of MKD often results in delays in its definitive diagnosis and the outcome in adult age is not completely known. Therapeutic options for MKD are based on limited data and include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, and biological agents that target specific cytokine pathways. In recent years, some studies have reported promising results for new biological drugs; however, these cases have failed to achieve satisfactory remission. Therefore, further studies are needed to understand the pathogenesis of MKD and identify innovative therapeutic tools for its management.

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