Negar Mehr

161 Coordinated Science Laboratory

1308 West Main St

Urbana Illinois 61801

I am an assistant professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a cross appointment at the Coordinated Science Laboratory (CSL) and Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department. I run the ICON Lab. The focus of my research is to develop control algorithms that allow autonomous systems to safely and intelligently interact with each other and with humans. To this end, I draw from the fields of control theory, robotics, game theory, and machine learning. I was a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Stanford from 2019 to 2020. I received my PhD in Mechanical engineering at UC Berkeley in 2019 and received my bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at Sharif University of Technology in 2013.


Oct 21, 2021 Our paper titled “Learning Contraction Policies from Offline Data” was accepted as an Oral at Neurips 2021 Safe RL workshop!
May 10, 2021 Our paper titled Potential iLQR: A Potential Minimizing Controller for Panning Multi-Agent Interactive Trajectories was accepted at RSS 2021!
Apr 13, 2021 We will organize a workshop on “Perception and Control for Autonomous Navigation in Crowded, Dynamic Environments” at RSS 2021.
Apr 1, 2021 I am honored to be selected for the UIUC COVID-19 Wall of Recognition in Engineering which recognizes the people who had gone “above and beyond” in their response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dec 13, 2020 Our paper titled RAT iLQR: A Risk Auto-Tuning Controller to Optimally Account for Stochastic Model Mismatch got accepted at the IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L).
Nov 10, 2020 Our paper titled A Game Theoretic Macroscopic Model of Lane Choices at Traffic Diverges with Applications to Mixed-Autonomy Networks got accepted at the Transportation Research Part B journal.
Oct 15, 2020 I gave a talk on “Team Teaching in the Time of Covid-19” at the UIUC Academy for Excellence in Engineering Education (AE3).
Sep 21, 2020 I am honored to be awarded the First Place 2020 IEEE ITSS Best Ph.D. Dissertation Award, for my thesis “Smart Traffic Operation: from Human-Driven Cars to Mixed Vehicle Autonomy”.
Aug 16, 2020 I joined UIUC Aerospace Engineering department as an assistant professor.
Jul 12, 2020 I gave a talk on “Safe Robotic Interactions under Uncertainty through Risk-Sensitive Control” at RSS 2020 workshop on Emergent Behaviors in Human-Robot Systems