Making Smart Systems That Interact With The Physical World

Miroslav Pajic, an expert in cyber-physical systems, which merge physical processes with information systems, will join Duke University’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering as an assistant professor in July 2015. With a history of making the electronics embedded in the world around us connect and work together to safely interact with the physical world, Pajic will continue his focus on biomedical and automotive environments.

From your watch to your refrigerator to your dog, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find things in the modern world without some sort of sensor or microprocessor embedded into them. Even people, with medical technology like pacemakers and neural stimulators, are becoming more digitized.

According to Pajic, just five years ago there were 30 embedded microprocessors in the environment per person—a global average that is continuously rising. As the trend escalates and modern systems become more complex, it’s critical to create reliable systems that can guarantee desirable levels of service, he says.

“We’re moving into a new era of societal changes like the introduction of smart cities, autonomous vehicles and closed-loop medical devices,” said Pajic, who joins the Duke faculty from the University of Pennsylvania.  “But if these systems are going to interact with and—even more challenging—control the world around us, they need to be built in a way that is safe, reliable and secure.” … (read more)