Distinguished Lecture by Dr. AshiteyTrebi-Ollennu-Carnegie Mellon University in Rwanda - Carnegie Mellon University

Robotic Exploration of Mars: Curiosity Rover, Phoenix Mars Lander and Mars Exploration Rovers

Tuesday, 26 March 2013


Dr. Ashitey Trebi-Ollennu
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)
California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
Pasadena, California USA

On Tuesday, 26 March 2013, Dr. Ashitey Trebi-Ollennu gave a firsthand account of developing, building and operating the Mars robotic missions. Dr. Trebi-Ollennu has participated in three successfull Mars missions. Dr. Trebi-Ollennu discussed his roles on the Curiosity Rover, Phoenix Mars Lander and MER missions.

Dr. Trebi-Ollennu also shared his views on how effective integration of technology into classroom instruction can result in higher levels of student achievement and how technology creates opportunities for people, organizations and nations to achieve their dreams.

Dr. AshiteyTrebi-Ollennu, FIET, FRAeS, SMIEE,PMP, is a technical group lead and robotics software engineer in the Mobility and Manipulation group at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, where he has been since 1999. He was born in Accra, Ghana.

He received his Ph.D. degree in control systems from Royal Military College of Science, Cranfield University, United Kingdom in 1996 and B.Eng. (Hons) from Queen Mary College, University of London, United Kingdom in 1991. He was a research scholar at Institute of Complex Engineered Systems, Carnegie Mellon University from 1997 to 1999.

His research interest includes planetary rovers, manipulation, distributed mobile robotics, sensor networks, reconfigurable robots, mobile robot architectures, and man–machine interaction and has published widely in these areas (more than 95 publications, including book chapters, journal and conference publications).

Dr. Trebi-Ollennu was a rover drive/planner for Spirit and Opportunity rovers for over 4 years. Dr. Trebi-Ollennu received the 2008 NASA Exceptional Engineering Achievement Medal for his contributions to the Mars Exploration Rover mission, 2007 Outstanding Engineer Award from IEEE Region 6, 2007 Sir Monty Finniston Achievement Medal from Institution of Engineering and Technology, U.K., 2010 Specialist Silver Award from the Royal Aeronautical Society, U.K. and The 21st Century Trailblazer Award in Systems Engineering from the U.S.A. National Society of Black Engineers, at the 2012 NSBE Aerospace Systems Conference.

Dr. Trebi-Ollennu is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, U. K., and a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, U.K. Member IEEE SMC, IEEE RAS and IEEE SMC. He has severed as a Guest Editor of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Magazine, Special Issue on Mars Exploration Rovers (June 2006). Dr. Trebi-Ollennu has been on Ph.D. committees at the Robotic Institute of Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh USA. Dr. Trebi-Ollennu is the founder of the Ghana Robotics Academy Foundation (GRAF) that was recently selected for the prestigious Google RISE Award 2013.