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ERF 2024 Workshop "Sustainable Robots by Design: Going beyond TRLs"

We are pleased to invite researchers, academics, and industry professionals to attend the workshop on "Sustainable Robots by Design: Going beyond TRLs" which will be held in conjunction with the 15th edition of the European Robotics Forum, to be held from 13-15 March 2024 in Rimini, Italy.

Date: 15th March 2024

Time: 11:40 – 13:00 CET

Building on the success and insights gained from the previous editions of the workshops series in ERF on "Sustainability and Social Robotics," this edition represents a natural progression in the series, aiming to further explore and implement the principles of sustainability within the realm of robotics design to ensure more sustainable applications in social space to outer space. The previous workshops highlighted the duality of sustainability and societal applications robotics, emphasizing the need for a comprehensive approach. In our upcoming workshop, we will take these discussions to the next level by focusing not only on how to integrate sustainability into the design and development of robotic systems across various Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs), but also on why and how to think beyond TRLs. By involving experts who are part of key initiatives on “Beyond TRL aspects, such as Societal Readiness Level”, we will delve into the key needs, challenges and opportunities in creating robots that are not just sustainable in their operations but are sustainable and supporting sustainability goals from the very inception of their design. Our objective is to foster collaboration among experts, researchers, and stakeholders to set new standards and best practices for the creation of environmentally and socially responsible robots, addressing the outcome of the previous year while paving the way for a more sustainable future in robotics.

Workshop Theme: Uniting local innovation in robotics and sustainability across Europe

Key Research Questions:

  1. What are some practical applications of robotics in various sustainability domains and aims to identify innovative solutions. And how can the outcomes of this Workshop inspire and catalyze new approaches and initiatives to tackle pressing sustainability challenges more effectively?

  2. What are the key success factors and best practices in fostering cross-border partnerships and knowledge exchange among local innovation hubs across Europe in the field of sustainable robotics?

  3. What are the key drivers and barriers for collaboration and knowledge exchange among local innovation hubs, researchers, industry professionals, and policymakers in the field of sustainable robotics across Europe?


11:40 – 11:45 Opening presentation by the organizers: Scope, Importance and Lesson Learned 

11:45 – 11:55 Opening remarks by Bruno Siciliano, Università di Napoli Federico II, Napoli, Italy 

Session 1: Theme: The needs to go beyond TRL based on real world use cases 

   11:55 – 12:10 Impulse talks:

   12:10 – 12:30 Panel discussion with Audience Engagement 

Session 2: Theme : New framework for sustainable robot design 

   12:30 – 12:45 Impulse talks 

   12:45 – 13:00  Panel discussion with Audience Engagement 

13:00 Conclusion and Action Items

Confirmed Speakers and Panelists

  • Bruno Siciliano, Università di Napoli Federico II, Napoli, Italy 

  • Antonio Sgorbissa, Università degli Studi of. Genova, Italy - “Cultural-awareness for Sustainable uses cases of Social Robots”

  • Bipin Indurkhya, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland

  • Barbara Sienkiewicz, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland - “Social Inclusion and Robotics” 

  • Francesco Ferro, PAL Robotics, Spain - “Industrial Practices on Sustainable Robot Design”

  • Michel Joop van der Schoor, Belgium, Vrije Universiteit Brussel/FARI: “Design for Sustainability: Changing the inception of Robots”

  • Shirley Elprama, Belgium, Vrije Universiteit Brussel SMIT: “Reflections on sustainable exoskeletons”

  • Anneli Roose, Civitta, Estonia - “Societal Readiness Level - going beyond TRL lesson from Robotics4EU project”

Related Insight Session: Robotics & AI: Transforming Sustainable Recycling & Remanufacturing

Date: 15th March 2024Time: 14:45 - 16:05 CET

Introduction: As part of the Robotics & AI Workshop on Transforming Sustainable Recycling & Remanufacturing, we are thrilled to announce a dedicated insight session featuring seven selected papers. This session provides a platform for authors to present their cutting-edge research and insights related to the workshop theme.

Instructions to Authors: Authors presenting at the insight session are kindly requested to adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Each presenter will have a strict 4-minute slot for their oral presentation.

  • Presentations will follow a pitch format, focusing on succinctly conveying the main results of the paper.

  • Following the pitches, there will be an interactive poster session, allowing ample opportunity for discussions with the authors.

  • Authors must prepare both a 4-minute pitch presentation (using slides or videos) and a poster (70 x 100 cm) detailing the contributions of their work.

  • For those interested, on-site printing services for the poster are available. Please contact for further details.

Presentation Schedule

14:50 - 14:54

Michael Hofmann, Matthias Propst, Markus Ikeda and Andreas Pichler

DemoDatenPro: Methods for semi-automatic disassembly and data acquisition in circular economies

14:54 – 14:58

Konstantinos Kokkalis, Fotios K. Konstantinidis, Georgios Tsimiklis and Angelos Amditis

A Flexible Robotic-based Architecture for Cyber-Physical Sorting Systems in Waste Management Industry

14:58 – 15:02

Christoffer Sloth and Iñigo Iturrate

Towards Measuring the Ease of Robotic Disassembly

15:02 -15:06

Terrin Pulikottil, Wouter Sterkens, Mathijs Piessens and Jef R. Peeters


Robotic ease of Disassembly Metric (Re-DiM) for flexible cooperative re-manufacturing of bike batteries

15:06 – 15:10

Matthias Propst, Michael Hofmann, Markus Ikeda and Andreas Pichler

Cognitive and robotic assistance to increase efficiency in Li-ion battery re-manufacturing


Paula Preu and Michel Joop van der Schoor

Navigating Sustainability: A Real-world Examination of Life Cycle Assessment in Early-Stage Robotics

15:14 – 15:18

Yifan Wu, Chuangchuang Zhou, Wouter Sterkens and Jef Peeters

Multi-modal Electronics State Evaluation for Robotic Demanufacturing

15:18 - 15:22

Michail Maniadakis, Antonios Liapis, Jef Peeters, Vasilis Makridis, Laurent Paszkiewicz, Fredy Raptopoulos, Javier Grau Forner, Myrto Pelopida, Friederike Kleijn and Nikos Vythoulkas

Portable, Robotic Material Recovery in a Box


15:22 – 15:26

Michel Joop van der Schoor

Robot Design with Sustainability-Impact-Based Requirements

15:26 – 16:10

Interactive Poster Presentation



Interactive Poster Session: Following the pitch presentations, attendees are invited to engage in an interactive poster session. Authors will be available to provide detailed explanations and insights into their research findings. This session aims to foster networking and collaboration opportunities among participants.


  • Amit Kumar Pandey, Rovial Space

  • Franziska Kirstein, Blue Ocean Robotics

  • Sharath Chandra Akkaladevi, Profactor GmbH



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