CFP RAS Special Issue on Reconfigurable Modular Robotics

The Journal of Robotics and Autonomous Systems invites papers for a
special issue on reconfigurable modular robotics.

Modularity and reconfiguration are key concepts that enable nature as
well as engineers to construct large systems reliably and
economically. A modular design allows a wide range of robots to be
assembled from a basic set of modules. If modules break they can
easily be replaced by spare modules. The cost of the entire system can
be reduced because individual modules can be mass-produced. Further,
current developments in bio-, chemo- and material science-inspired
communities are enabled using new principles of multicellular and
layered self-assembly and properties of materials. These developments
are leading to new application domains of reconfigurable systems and
new challenges for the robotics community. This special issue will
focus on current advances in the hardware and software areas of
reconfigurable modular robotics, issues related to dynamic network
topology and limited module resources (power, size, torque, precision,
etc.), difficulties in global synchronization, exclusion of
centralized decision makers, reliable communication among modules, and
minimalist sensing and actuation capabilities.

Papers are solicited on all areas directly related to these topics,
including but not limited to:

* Hardware: novel mechanics and electronics
* Sensing and perception in modular systems
* Behaviors for modular robots
* Distributed control and programming
* Plug-and-play mechatronics
* Different multi-cellular systems
* Self-assembly on macro- and micro-scales
* Artificial embryogenesis, morphing, structural self-organization
* Molecular, chemical, underwater and material science-inspired works
towards reconfigurable systems
* New challenges for future modular robots

Papers must contain high-quality original contributions and be
prepared in accordance with Robotics and Autonomous Systems
guidelines. Authors who intend to submit a manuscript are encouraged
to contact Serge Kernbach ( or
Robert Fitch ( as soon as possible in order to
ensure that the planned submission falls within the aims and scope of
the special issue. All papers will be reviewed following the regular
reviewing procedure of the journal.


Wei-Min Shen, University of Southern California
Kasper Stoy, University of Southern Denmark
Radhika Nagpal, Harvard University
Robert Fitch, University of Sydney
Serge Kernbach, University of Stuttgart


Paper submission deadline: 30 June 2012
Notification to authors: 30 September 2012
Submission of revised papers: 30 October 2012
Final acceptance: 30 November 2012

ONLINE SUBMISSION (open after 31 May 2012)

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