Nina Mahmoudian

Nina Mahmoudian


  • Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering–Engineering Mechanics
  • Faculty Advisor, SENSE Enterprise
  • PhD, Aerospace Engineering, Virginia Tech


Dr. Nina Mahmoudian is an assistant professor in the Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics Department at Michigan Technological University. Before joining Michigan Tech in January 2011, Mahmoudian worked as a research associate for Collective Dynamics and Control Laboratory in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Maryland. Dr. Mahmoudian received her Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from Virginia Tech. She is a recipient of 2015 National Science Foundation CAREER award and 2015 Office of Naval Research YIP award.

Dr. Mahmoudian is the founding director of the Nonlinear and Autonomous Systems Laboratory (NAS Lab). Her research interests lie in the area of robotics, energy autonomy, system design, dynamics and controls. Mahmoudian is working to build a road map to achieve robust continuous autonomy that advances unmanned systems ability to perform autonomous long-term missions. She works on developing analytical and computational tools for the cooperative control of a network of autonomous vehicles in complex environment using nonlinear control and stochastic analysis. Mahmoudian’s research approach combines fundamental research with applied research to facilitate a seamless transition between academic modeling/simulation problem-solving approaches and real-world applications in air, on ground, and under sea.

Areas of Expertise

  • Unmanned Systems
  • Dynamics and Controls
  • System Design

Research Interests

  • Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) with Special Interest in Underwater Gliders
  • Coordination and Control of Networked Multi-Agent Systems
  • Motion Planning in Complex Environments
  • Cyber-physical Systems

Recent Publications

  • Ziaeefard S., Page B., Pinar A., and Mahmoudian N., “Effective Turning Motion Control of Internally Actuated Autonomous Underwater Vehicles”, Journal of Intelligent & Robotic Systems, Springer, 2017.
  • Moridian B., Mahmoudian N., Weaver W., and Robinett R., “Post-Disaster Electric Power Recovery Using Autonomous Vehicles”, IEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering (T-ASE), vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 62-72, 2017.
  • Page B., Ziaeefard S., Pinar A., and Mahmoudian N., “Highly Maneuverable Low-Cost Autonomous Underwater Glider: Design and Development”, IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), vol. 2, no. 1, pp. 344-349, 2017.
  • Ziaeefard S. and Mahmoudian N., “Building Micro Underwater Glider: Exploring Engineering Design and Understanding Forces and Interaction”, Michigan Science Teacher Association Journal, vol. 61.2, pp. 49-56, 2016.
  • Li B., Moridian B., and Mahmoudian N., “Underwater Multi-robot Persistent Area Coverage Mission Planning”, MTS/ IEEE Ocean’s 16, Monterey, CA, September 19-23, 2016.
  • Ziaeefard S., Mahmoudian N., Rastgaar M., and Miller M., “Engaging Students in STEM Learning through Co-robotic Hands-on Activities”, American Society for Engineering Education Conference (ASEE), New Orleans, LA, June 26-29, 2016.
  • Ziaeefard S., Aramizo Riberio G., and Mahmoudian N., “GUPPIE, Underwater 3D Printed Robot a Game Changer in Control Design Education”, American Control Conference (ACC), Chicago, IL, July 1-3, 2015.
  • Rastgaar M. and Mahmoudian N., "Robustness of Orthogonal Eigenstructure Control to Actuators Failure" Nonlinear Approaches in Engineering Applications 2, Editors: R.N. Jaza and L. Dai, Springer, New York, pp. 137-166, ISBN: 978-1-4614-6877-6, DOI; 10.1007/978-1-4614-6877-6 5.
  • Mitchell B., Wilkening E., and Mahmoudian N., 2013, “Underwater Gliders for Lake Marine Research,” American Control Conference, Washington, DC, June 17-19, 2013.
  • Mitchell B., Wilkening E., and Mahmoudian N., 2013, “Developing an Educational Underwater Glider,” International Conference on Robotics and Automation, Karlsruhe, Germany, May 6-10, 2013.
  • Weaver W., Mahmoudian N., and Parker G., 2012, “Autonomous Mobile Power Blocks for Prepositioned Power Conversion and Distribution,” TARDEC Ground Vehicle Systems Engineering and Technology Symposium, Dearborn, MI, August 14-16, 2012.
  • Mahmoudian, N., and Paley, D. A., 2011, “Synchronization on the N-torus with noisy measurements,” American Control Conference, San Francisco, CA, June 29-July 1, 2011.
  • Mahmoudian, N., Woolsey, C., and Geisbert, J., 2010, “Approximate Analytical Turning Conditions for Underwater Gliders: Implications for Motion Control and Path Planning,” IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering, Vol. 35, No. 1, pp. 131-143.
  • Mahmoudian, N., and Woolsey, C., 2009, “Analysis of Feedforward/Feedback Control Design for Underwater Glider Based on Slowly Varying Systems Theory,” AIAA Guidance, Navigation and Control Conference and Exhibit, Chicago, IL, August 10-13, 2009.
  • Jazar, G. N., Mahinfalah, M., Mahmoudian, N., and Rastgaar Aagaah, M., 2009, “Effects of Nonlinearities on the Steady State Dynamic Behavior of Electric Actuated Microcantilever-Based Resonators,” Journal of Vibration and Control, Vol. 15, No. 9, pp. 1283-1306.
  • Mahmoudian, N., and Woolsey, C., 2008, “Underwater Glider Motion Control,” 47th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control, Cancun, Mexico, Dec 9-11, 2008.