Henrik I. Christensen

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Henrik I. Christensen
Born (1962-07-16) July 16, 1962 (age 55)
Frederikshavn, Denmark
Residence San Diego, California
Nationality Danish
Citizenship United States of America
Alma mater Aalborg University
Scientific career
Fields Robotics
Institutions University of California, San Diego
Doctoral advisor Erik Granum

Henrik Iskov Christensen (born July 16, 1962 in Frederikshavn, Denmark) is a Danish roboticist and Professor of Computer Science at Dept. of Computer Science and Engineering, at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. He is also the Director of the Contextual Robotics Institute at UC San Diego.

Prior to UC San Diego, he was a Distinguished Professor of Computer Science in the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. At Georgia Tech, Christensen served as the founding director of the Institute for Robotics and Intelligent Machines (IRIM@GT) and the KUKA Chair of Robotics.

Previously, Christensen was the Founding Chairman of European Robotics Research Network (EURON) and an IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Distinguished Lecturer in Robotics.[1]


Christensen received his Certificate of Apprenticeship in Mechanical Engineering from the Frederikshavn Technical School, Denmark in 1981. He received his M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Aalborg University in 1987 and 1990, respectively. His doctoral thesis Aspects of Real Time Image Sequence Analysis was advised by Erik Granum.[2]

After receiving his Ph.D., Christensen held teaching and research positions at Aalborg University, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the Royal Institute of Technology. In 2006, Christensen accepted a part-time position at the Georgia Institute of Technology as a Distinguished Professor of Computer Science and the KUKA Chair of Robotics, and transitioned to full-time in early 2007. At Georgia Tech, Christensen served as the founding director of the Center for Robotics and Intelligent Machines (RIM@GT), an interdepartmental research units consists of the College of Computing, College of Engineering, and the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI).[3] During his tenure, RIM@GT experienced an unprecedented growth, including (as of 2008) 36 faculty members as well as a dedicated interdisciplinary Ph.D. program in Robotics.

He joined UC San Diego the fall of 2016 to be the director of the UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Institute.[4][5] The institute does research on robots in the context of empowering people in their daily lives from work over leisure to domestic tasks. An important consideration is the context in which the robot is to perform its tasks.


DARPA Urban Grand Challenge[edit]

In 2007, Christensen led Georgia Tech's team in the DARPA Urban Grand Challenge as the principal investigator.[6] The 2007 UGC was the third installment of the DARPA Grand Challenges (in 2004 and 2005), and took place on November 3, 2007 at the site of the now-closed George Air Force Base (currently used as Southern California Logistics Airport), in Victorville, California. The course involved a 96 km (60 mi) urban area course, to be completed in less than 6 hours while obeying all traffic regulations.

Professional activities[edit]

  • Associate Editor of Journal of Machine Vision and Applications, Springer Verlag (1996–2004).
  • Associate Editor of Journal of Pattern Recognition and Artificial Intel ligence, World Scientific Press (1997–2005)
  • Associate Editor of MIT Press series on "Intelligent Robotics and Autonomous Agents", (1997–)
  • Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intel ligence (1999–2003)
  • Associate Editor Robotics and Autonomous Systems journal, Elsevier, Competition Corner, (1999–2002)
  • Associate Editor of AAAI AI Magazine (2000–2007)
  • Associate Editor of Springer Series on "Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics", (2001–)
  • Associate Editor of International Journal of Robotics Research, (2002–)
  • Associate Editor of Service Robotics, (2005–)


  • Position Estimation Method, H.I. Christensen & G. Zunino, World patent (WO03062937) 3 March 11, 2008
  • Förfarande för en anordning på hjul, G. Zunino & H.I. Christensen, Swedish Patent (SE0200197) Mobile Robot, P. Jensfelt & H.I. Christensen, World Patent.

Honors and awards[edit]

  • The Foundation Vision North 1991 Research Award. Awarded for contribution to advancement of research at the Laboratory of Image Analysis, Aalborg University. August 1991.
  • Elected Officer of International Foundation of Robotics Research (2003–)
  • IEEE RAS Distinguished Lecturer in Robotics (2004–2006)
  • Engelberger Award for Education (2011)[7]


  1. ^ Autobiography - Henrik I. Christensen
  2. ^ Christensen, H.I. (1989). Aspects of real-time image sequence analysis. Aalborg University. 
  3. ^ RIM@GT Faculty
  4. ^ "UC San Diego Hires Top Robotics Expert to Lead Contextual Robotics Institute". ucsdnews.ucsd.edu. Retrieved 2017-09-04. 
  5. ^ "UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering". jacobsschool.ucsd.edu. Retrieved 2017-09-04. 
  6. ^ Sting Racing (link dead)
  7. ^ "Robotics Online - Engelberger Award". Robotics Online. Retrieved 2017-09-04. 

External links[edit]