Justin Kottinger

Hello, my name is Justin, and the horse’s name is Jag. I am a graduate student in the Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of Colorado Boulder.

I attended Whittier College, located in southern California, for undergraduate studies where I studied physics with a minor in mathematics. During my tenure at Whittier, I was a member (and captain) of the school’s NCAA affiliated baseball team. My undergraduate research experiences included a summer at Texas A&M University, a study on neural networks, an investigation on plasma containment/manipulation with the specific application to electric propulsion, and robotic hardware/software integration. Once I completed my undergraduate degree, I knew I wanted to study robotic software, the “brain” of a robot. Additionally, I wanted to focus on robotic research directly correlated with using robots to aid humans. The ARIA Systems Research Group was the best fit for me because I was able to combine all of my desires and interests into a single research theme.

My research includes multiple objective task optimization for multi-agent systems. I am interested in giving multi-agent teams the ability to perform a very high-level tasks by autonomously distributing sub-tasks to individual members of the team in such a way that optimizes multiple objectives, including competing objectives (such as minimizing search time and maximizing exploration space). Since this problem is very computationally complex, my research includes a learning component where the robotic team can learn the high-level task from domain-experienced humans! Similar to other members of the lab, I use temporal logic to fromally verify the performance and safty of my algorithms. The result of this work will be a formally guaranteed task-planner for multi-objective task planning on multi-agent robotic teams.

Applications of this research include any multi-agent robotic task where the objectives compete with each other. A few examples include: search and rescue operations, space and planetary exploration, disaster mitigation, and crop pest control (my personal favorite). Thank you for taking the time to learn about our research. If you have any questions about my research interests or the ARIA Systems Research Group as a whole, do not hesitate to contact me at: