Keynote Speakers


Professor Vadim Utkin

The Ohio State University


Sliding Mode Control of Power Converters

In recent years, a lot of research efforts have been devoted to the application of sliding mode control techniques to power electronic equipment and electrical drives. Hundreds of technical papers have been published in this research field. The tendency stems from the nature of sliding mode with discontinuous control actions and due to its potential for circumventing parameter variation effects along with low implementation complexity. This presentation presents a control design procedures for DC/DC, AC/DC and DC/AC power converters. It summarizes the research results of the power electronics and control systems group at The Ohio State University within the last ten years. It develops novel sliding mode control algorithms with different control objectives, complete and incomplete information about system states. Chattering suppression, power factor, losses and high order harmonics minimization are in the scope of research. A wide range of MATLAB/SIMULINK computer simulations along with experimental results are provided to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed control design methodology.

About Professor Utkin

Prof V. Utkin graduated from Moscow Power Institute (Dipl.Eng.), received a Ph.D. and Doctor of Sciences degrees from the Institute of Control Sciences (Moscow, Russia). He was with the Institute of Control Sciences since 1960, as Head of the Discontinuous Control Systems Laboratory in 1973-1994. Currently he is a professor of the Ohio State University. Prof. Utkin is one of the originators of the concepts of Variable Structure Systems and Sliding Mode Control. In 1975-1978 he was in charge of an international project between his Institute and “Energoinvest”, Sarajevo on the sliding mode control of induction motors. D.C., induction and synchronous drives with sliding mode control have been applied for metal-cutting machine tools, process control and electric cars. Prof. Utkin is an author and co-author of 5 books and 300 papers. His current research interests are control of infinite-dimensional plants including flexible manipulators, sliding modes in discrete time systems and microprocessor implementation of sliding mode control, control of electric drives and alternators, robotics and automotive control. As Ford Chair Professor he has been a PI of several projects on automotive engines and alternators control, on power distribution control of hybrid electric vehicle with automotive companies. He is Honorary Doctor of University of Sarajevo and University of Tarragona, in 1972 was awarded Lenin Prize (the highest scientific award in the former USSR), in 2003 – Oldenburger medal of ASME, in 2005 – Humboldt award of German government, in 2008 was elected as a foreign member of Science and Art Academy of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Prof. Utkin is an IEEE fellow. He held visiting positions at universities in the USA, Japan, Italy, England, Spain and Germany. Prof. Utkin was IPC chairman of 199O IFAC Congress in Tallinn; now he is an Associate Editor of “International Journal of Control”, member of Technical Committee of IEEE on Variable Structure and Sliding Mode Control.




Dr. Alexander S. Poznyak



Adaptive Robust Feedback Design: Attractive Ellipsoid Method

This presentation introduces a new technical development of a robust control design for a wide class of nonlinear dynamical systems in continuous time. Control of nonlinear systems are studied in the presence of model uncertainties and bounded external disturbances. The synthesis of feedback with linear structures are discussed. Physical development and implementation of robust high performance controllers for feedback that work in the absence of information on the full model is presented. Some examples (inverted pendulum and a double pendulum of Furuta) to illustrate how to apply the method of ellipsoids Attractive (AEM) for mechanical and electromechanical systems are demonstrated as video-films.

About Dr. Posniak

Alexander Semion Pozniak Gorbatch was graduated from Moscow Physical Technical Institute (MPhTI) in 1970. He earned Ph.D. and Doctor Degrees from the Institute of Control Sciences of Russian Academy of Sciences in 1978 and 1989, respectively. From 1973 up to 1993 he served this institute as researcher and leading researcher, and in 1993 he accepted a post of full professor (3-E) at CINVESTAV of IPN in Mexico. 8 years he was the head of the Automatic Control Department. He is the director of 38 PhD thesis’s (33 in Mexico). He has published more than 200 papers in different international journals and 13 books including “Adaptive Choice of Variants” (Nauka, Moscow, 1986), “Learning Automata: Theory and Applications” (Elsivier-Pergamon, 1994), “ Learning “Automata and Stochastic Programming” (Springer-Verlag, 1997), “Self-learning Control of Finite Markov Chains” (Marcel Dekker, 2000), “Differential Neural Networks: Identification, State Estimation and Trajectory Tracking” (World Scientific, 2001) and “Advance mathematical Tools for Automatic Control Engineers. Vol. 1: Deterministic Technique” (Elsevier, 2008) and Vol.2: Stochastic Technique (Elsevier, 2009), “Robust Maximum Principle: Theory and Applications” (Burkhauser, 2012), ., “Robust Output Optimal Control via Integral Sliding Mode” (Birkhauser, 2014) and “Attractive Ellipsoids in Robust Control” (Birkhauser, 2014). He is Regular Member of Mexican Academy of Sciences and System of National Investigators (SNI-Emerito from 2014). He is Fellow of IMA (Institute of Mathematics and Its Applications, Essex UK) and Associated Editor of Oxford-IMA Journal on Mathematical Control and Information, of Kybernetika (Chech Republic) as well as Iberamerican Int. Journal on “Computations and Systems”. He was also Associated Editor of CDC, ACC and Member of Editorial Board of IEEE CSS. He is a member of the Evaluation Committee of SNI (Ministry of Science and Technology) responsible for Engineering Science and Technology Foundation in Mexico, and a member of Award Committee of Premium of Mexico on Science and Technology. In 2014 he was invited by the USA Government to serve as the member of NSF committee on “Neuro Sciences and Artificial Intelligence”.




Min Chen

Alcenit Corporation, CEO


Creando el Caso de Negocio para la Mejora de Procesos en Contextos de Baja Madurez

Antes de comenzar un proyecto de mejora de procesos, con frecuencia se exige desarrollar el caso de negocio para justificar la inversión de tiempo y recursos económicos en las organizaciones. Desarrollar un caso de negocio en ambientes de baja madurez es un reto mayor, ya que debido a su entorno cambiante, estos ambientes son poco aptos para la recolección de datos cuantitativos. Para ello, se desarrolló el Análisis Cuantitativo presentado en esta charla, que tiene el objetivo de evaluar el rendimiento de procesos dinámicos “ad-hoc” en unidades organizacionales pequeñas y de baja madurez. Este análisis requiere de baja inversión y es una solución no intrusiva que ayuda a las organizaciones a reducir las barreras iniciales de la adopción de procesos y demostrar las mayores oportunidades de mejora en términos del negocio. El gran reto de este Análisis Cuantitativo es el de evaluar consistentemente el impacto de los procesos en ambientes en donde no son bien definidos ni repetibles. Para vencer este reto, fue necesario cambiar el paradigma de medición. En vez de medir el rendimiento de cada proceso individualmente, como normalmente se hace en un ambiente de alta madurez, el enfoque del análisis fue el de evaluar el rendimiento integral de la unidad organizacional a través del impacto de las fallas en los procesos. Este Análisis Cuantitativo fue desarrollado en base a múltiples marcos de referencia tales como Goal Question Metric (GQM), Personal Software Process (PSP), y CMMI-DEV. Los resultados proveen información significativa y contundente. Algunos ejemplos de los resultados están: el retrabajo por fase en el ciclo de desarrollo, las mayores causas de retrabajo y su costo para el negocio, las fases más efectivas para prevenir o eliminar los errores, entre otros. Este análisis es una alternativa rápida y no intrusiva que provee una solución para el desarrollo de casos de negocio con costos bajos. Permite crear las rutas de mejora de procesos que ayudan a las organizaciones a alcanzar sus objetivos de negocio. Está basado en conceptos de múltiples marcos de referencia y a la vez mantiene un enfoque ágil para su fácil y rápida adopción en contextos pequeños y de baja madurez.

About Ming Chen

Min Chen is the founder and CEO of Alcenit Corporation since 2006. Together with her team of consultants she provides advisory services in IT management, innovation and software engineering to the leading companies and most influential government institutions in Panama and Latin America. Before founding her company, she worked for multiple organisations from start-ups to corporations in Panama and Silicon Valley in the United States. She earned a Master of Software Engineering degree from Carnegie Mellon University, an Innovation Management degree from the University of California at Berkeley – Haas School of Business, and a Bachelor degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Panama. She has been a recipient of multiple scholarships such as Fulbright, BARSA, IFARHU y SENACYT. She is certified in CMMI, COBIT and SOA, and has received executive training from the MIT Sloan School of Management and Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. Ms. Chen joined IEEE as student member in 1999. Since then, IEEE has provided her many opportunities to advance technical knowledge, develop leadership skills, and have an international exposure. She was one of the 5 people in the world to receive the IEEE Upsilon Pi Epsilon Award for Academic Excellence in 2002. In 2011, she was promoted as a Senior Member and also became a Distinguished Visitor at the IEEE Computer Society Distinguished Visitors Program (DVP). Currently, she is the chair of Women in Engineering (WIE) affinity group in Panama. Under her leadership, WIE Panama has won several awards including the 2014 WIE Affinity Group of the Year worldwide award. She has been a contributor to publications and articles in English and Spanish about IT Management, software engineering and entrepreneurship. Ms. Chen has also been interviewed for articles published by The Economist, Financial Capital, La Estrella de Panama, and La Prensa.



Prof. Claudio Canizarez

Professor Claudio Cañizares

University of Waterloo


Remote Microgrid Research at Waterloo 

This presentation will discuss some of the main motivations and objectives of Prof. Cañizares’ research group on remote microgrids, followed by a brief overview of the main issues and related work in the three main research areas in which his group has made some relevant and novel contributions. Thus, a description of the group’s work on modeling, simulation, and analysis of isolated microgrids will be first presented, highlighting the main stability issues and proposed solutions associated with unbalanced operation of distributed generators in microgrids. Next, an overview will be provided of the main issues related to dispatch and frequency control of isolated microgrids, briefly discussing the group’s work on Energy Management Systems (EMS) and voltage-frequency control. A description of the group’s work on optimal planning of remote microgrids will then be provided, starting with an overview of existing microgrids in Canadian remote communities and their available wind and solar power resources, and followed by a summary of the proposed techniques and their application to planning wind and solar power generation enhancements for the microgrid of the Northern Ontario remote community of Kasabonika Lake First Nation. Finally, a brief review will be provided of Prof. Cañizares’ microgrid projects and associated personnel and publications.

About Professor Claudio Cañizares

Dr. Claudio Cañizares is a Professor at the University of Waterloo since 1993 and currently serves as the Hydro One Endowed Chair and an Associate Director of WISE. His research activities focus on the study of modeling, simulation, computation, stability, control, and optimization issues in power and energy systems in the context of competitive energy markets and smart grids.  He is a Fellow of the IEEE, of the Royal Society of Canada, and of the Canadian Academy of Engineering, and has been the recipient of various awards and recognitions from IEEE-PES Committees and Working Groups, where has held several leadership positions.




Professor Lluis F. Marsal

Universitat Rovira i Virgili


Advanced nanoporous anodic alumina structures for photonic applications

In the last years structurally engineered nanoporous materials have attracted an increasing interest due to their potential applications in research fields such as electronics, photonic, biotechnology, magnetism, drug delivery, energy, and so on. Nanoporous anodic alumina has become a popular material as a result of their outstanding set of properties and cost-competitive fabrication processes. In this talk, we will present some recent advances in the design and fabrication of photonic micro-nanostructures based on nanoporous anodic alumina. We introduce different electrochemical approaches to modify the pore morphology during or after the fabrication processes (e.g. straight and well-defined pores, cone-like, funnel-like, modulated, hierarchical, three-dimensional, tip-like, etc.) and the design and fabrication of specific structures with enhanced optical response such as tunable porous microcavities, gold-coated nanoporous bilayers, porous distributed Bragg reflectors, nanoporous rugate filters, etc. In a second part, we will show the use of nanoporous anodic alumina as a template and how to create new nanostructures (e.g. nanostructured polymers, nanowires, colloidal fibers). Finally, we will present and discuss some future optoelectronic and optical sensing applications of these nanoporous structures.

About Professor Lluis F. Marsal

Lluís F. Marsal is Full Professor at the Department of Electronic, Electric and Automatic Engineering of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Spain. He obtained his Ph.D. degree in Physics in 1997 from the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya. Between 1998 and 1999, he was postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. In 2012 he received the URV’s RQR Award for the high quality in research and in 2014, he received a 2014 UniSA Distinguished Researcher Award from the University of South Australia (UniSA) and the 2014 ICREA Academia Award from the Generalitat of Catalunya. Since 2013, he is the Chair of Spain Chapter of the IEEE Electron Devices Society. He is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and of the Optical Society of America (OSA). Dr. Marsal serves as a member of the Distinguished Lecturer program of the Electron Devices Society (EDS-IEEE) He is also member of the Advisory Board of the Research Center on Engineering Materials and Micro/Nanosystems (URV Research Center). He has been member of advisory and technical committees in several international and national conferences and has been visiting professor at several universities and research institutions (CINVESTAV – IPN, McMaster University, ICMM-CSIC, BiomaGUNE, Mawson Institute). He has co-authored more than 200 publications in international refereed journals and conferences, 2 books, 5 book chapters and holds two patents. He has presented over 25 invited lectures in international conferences and has participated in over than 80 national and international projects. His current research interests mainly focus on low–cost technologies based on micro- and nanoporous silicon and nanoporous alumina for optical biosensing and biomedical applications. He is also interested in organic and hybrid nanostructured materials to enhance light-matter interactions for optoelectronic devices.




Dr. Efren Mezura



Soft Computing Applied to Engineering and Medicine Complex Problems

This presentation introduces the concept of Soft Computing by first defining Artificial Intelligence. After that, the different Soft Computing techniques are introduced, particularly those adopted and studied at the Artificial Intelligence Research Center of the University of Veracruz (CIIA-UV), e.g., evolutionary computing, swarm intelligence, artificial immune systems, among others. The tendency to combine different techniques into one intelligent system is also discussed. After getting some knowledge about Soft Computing and its techniques, a set of applications developed at CIIA-UV are presented. Such applications are classified in two groups: engineering applications and medicine applications. The applications in engineering comprise supply chain optimization, mathematical geometry, mechanical design, scheduling, among others. The applications in medicine cover cervical and breast cancer detection with alternative techniques.

About Dr. Mezura

Efrén Mezura-Montes is a full-time researcher at the Artificial Intelligence Research Center, University of Veracruz, MEXICO. His research interests are the design, analysis and application of bio-inspired algorithms to solve complex optimization problems. He has published over 100 papers in peer-reviewed journals and conferences. He also has one edited book and six book chapters published by international publishing companies. From his work, Google Scholar reports more than 3,200 citations.
Dr. Mezura Montes is a member of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society Technical Committee on Evolutionary Computation and he is also member of the IEEE Systems Man and Cybernetics Society Technical Committee on Soft Computing. He is also the founder of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society task force on Nature-Inspired Constrained Optimization.
Dr. Mezura-Montes is a member of the editorial board of the journals: “Swarm and Evolutionary Computation”, “Computational Optimization and Applications”, “Complex & Intelligent Sytems”, “Journal of Applied Mathematics”, “Journal of Optimization”, “The International Journal of Natural Computing Research”, “The International Journal of Energy Optimization and Engineering”, and “Artificial Intelligence Research”. He is also a reviewer for more than 20 international specialized journals, including the IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation and the IEEE Transactions on Cybernetics. Dr. Mezura-Montes is a Level 1 member of the Mexican National Researchers System (SNI).