About Me

I am currently a Software Engineer at Lyft Level 5, Lyft's Self-Driving Division, working on motion planning and decision making for driverless cars.

I received a Ph.D. in motion planning and control for Micro Aerial Vehicles, under the supervision of Prof. Davide Scaramuzza at the Robotics and Perception Group, University of Zurich. During my doctoral studies, I worked at the intersection between perception and action. More specifically, I developed techniques to exploit motion planning and control to cope with the limitations of onboard sensors for high-speed flight with small-scale, lightweight, vision-based autonomous quadrotors. Check out my PhD thesis for further details. Previously, I received a B.Sc. and a M.Sc in Automation Engineering from University of Naples “Federico II”, with focus on dynamical systems, robotics and control.

Drop me an email at falanga@ifi.uzh.ch if you want to get in touch, or check out my profiles on LinkedIn and Google Scholar.

Awards and Achievements

Science Robotics cover page

My research on event-based obstacle avoidance was featured on the cover page of Science Robotics (see issue here).

Drone Hero Award 2019

Winner of the category Most Innovative Drone (see list of winners).

NASA Tech Briefs "Create the Future" contest 2019

Winner of the category Aerospace and Defense (see list of winners).

Media Coverage

Agile Quadrotor Flight through Narrow Gaps using Onboard Sensing and Computing

The Foldable Drone: a Morphing Quadrotor that can Squeeze and Fly

Rapid, Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance with an Event-based Camera

Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance for Quadrotors with Event Cameras

Publications

Peer-reviewed Journal Papers

  1. RAL17_Faessler

    M. Faessler, D. Falanga, D. Scaramuzza

    Thrust Mixing, Saturation, and Body-Rate Control for Accurate Aggressive Quadrotor Flight

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2017. Accepted for oral presentation at ICRA 17.

  2. RAL18_Kim

    S. Kim, D. Falanga, D. Scaramuzza

    Computing The Forward Reachable Set for a Multirotor Under First-Order Aerodynamic Effects

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2018. Accepted for oral presentation at IROS 18.

  3. RAL18_Falanga

    D. Falanga, K. Kleber, S. Mintchev, D. Floreano, D. Scaramuzza

    The Foldable Drone: A Morphing Quadrotor that can Squeeze and Fly

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2018. Accepted for oral presentation at ICRA 18.

  4. ISR19_Moon

    H. Moon, J. Martinez-Carranza, T. Cieslewski, M. Faessler, D. Falanga, A. Simovic, D. Scaramuzza, S. Li, M. Ozo, C. De Wagter, G. de Croon, S. Hwang, S. Jung, H. Shim, H. Kim, M. Park, T. C. Au, S. J. Kim

    Challenges and implemented technologies used in autonomous drone racing

    Springer: Intelligent Service Robotics Series, 2019

  5. RAL19_Falanga

    D. Falanga, S. Kim, D. Scaramuzza

    How Fast is Too Fast? The Role of Perception Latency in High-Speed Sense and Avoid

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2019.

  6. RSS19_Nisar

    B. Nisar, P. Foehn, D. Falanga, D. Scaramuzza

    VIMO: Simultaneous Visual Inertial Model-based Odometry and Force Estimation

    IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2019. Accepted for oral presentation at RSS 19.

  7. Science20_falanga

    D. Falanga, K. Kleber, D. Scaramuzza

    Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance for Quadrotors with Event Cameras

    Science Robotics, 2020

Peer-reviewed Conference Papers

  1. ICRA17_Falanga

    D. Falanga, E. Mueggler, M. Faessler, D. Scaramuzza

    Aggressive Quadrotor Flight through Narrow Gaps with Onboard Sensing and Computing using Active Vision

    IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Singapore, 2017

  2. RSS17_Foehn

    P. Foehn, D. Falanga, N. Kuppuswamy, R. Tedrake, D. Scaramuzza

    Fast Trajectory Optimization for Agile Quadrotor Maneuvers with a Cable-Suspended Payload

    Robotics: Science and Systems (RSS), Boston, 2017 Best Student Paper Award Finalist

  3. SSRR17_Falanga

    D. Falanga, A. Zanchettin, A. Simovic, J. Delmerico, D. Scaramuzza

    Vision-based Autonomous Quadrotor Landing on a Moving Platform

    IEEE/RSJ International Symposium on Safety, Security and Rescue Robotics (SSRR), Shanghai, 2017

  4. RSS18_Spica

    R. Spica, D. Falanga, E. Cristofalo, E. Montijano, D. Scaramuzza, M. Schwager

    A Game Theoretic Approach to Autonomous Two-Player Drone Racing

    Robotics: Science and Systems (RSS), Pittsburgh, 2018

  5. IROS18_Falanga

    D. Falanga, P. Foehn, P. Lu, D. Scaramuzza

    PAMPC: Perception-Aware Model Predictive Control for Quadrotors

    IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Madrid, 2018

Videos

Papers

Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance for Quadrotors with Event Cameras

Rapid, Dynamic Obstacle Avoidance with an Event-based Camera

The Foldable Drone: A Morphing Quadrotor that can Squeeze and Fly

Aggressive Quadrotor Flight through Narrow Gaps with Onboard Sensing and Computing using Active Vision

PAMPC: Perception-Aware Model Predictive Control for Quadrotors

Thrust Mixing, Saturation, and Body-Rate Control for Accurate Aggressive Quadrotor Flight

Fast Trajectory Optimization for Agile Quadrotor Maneuvers with a Cable-Suspended Payload

Vision-based Autonomous Quadrotor Landing on a Moving Platform

A Game Theoretic Approach to Autonomous Two-Player Drone Racing

Competitions and Demonstrations

IROS 2017 Autonomous Drone Race

IROS 2018 Autonomous Drone Race

Integrative Demo of Aerial and Terrestrial Robots for Rescue Missions