Logo: University of Southern California

Michael Safonov Elected IFAC Fellow

May 05, 2008 —
Professor Michael Safonov
Prof. Michael Safonov from the Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical Engineering was recently elected as a Fellow of the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC).
Safonov, a leader in the field of robust control with seminal works dating back to his 1977 doctoral thesis, has worked extensively with flight control systems for aircraft, including the CH-47 Chinook helicopter and F/A-18 Hornet fighter jet.
His research involves design studies in which modern robust multivariable control techniques are applied to these aircraft and others.
“Our faculty join me in congratulating Mike on this honor and recognition of his research accomplishments in control theory,” said Alexander Sawchuk, Systems Chair of the Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical Engineering.
Founded in 1957, the IFAC is a multinational federation of member organizations representing the engineering and scientific societies concerned with automatic control in participating nations. In 2005 it elected its first group of Fellows, a designation set aside for, “persons who have made outstanding and extraordinary contributions in the field of interest of IFAC, in the role as an Engineer/Scientist, Technical Leader, or Educator,” according to the organization’s Web site.
Safonov received his B.S., Masters and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, before serving in the Navy as an Electronics Division Officer aboard the aircraft carrier Franklin D. Roosevelt.
In addition to his work at USC, Safonov has acted as a consultant to a wide range of companies, including The Analytic Sciences Corp., Honeywell Systems and Research Center, Northrop Grumman Corp., Hughes Aircraft and others.
He has authored or co-authored more than 150 journal and conference papers and the book Stability and Robustness of Multivariable Feedback Systems, and is a co-author of the MATLAB Robust Control Toolbox. Safonov is also the editor of the International Journal of Robust and Nonlinear Control, a senior member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. His research interests include infinity-norm optimal control theory and nonlinear system theory with applications to aerospace control design problems.
Safonov will receive his IFAC Fellow award July 10 at the IFAC World Congress in Seoul, South Korea.