Hendrik Van Brussel


Emeritus Professor, KU Leuven

Photo of Hendrik van BrusselHendrik Van Brussel is emeritus professor in mechatronics and automation at the Faculty of Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KU Leuven), Belgium.

He received his B.Sc ME degree from Hoger Technisch Instituut, Oostende, Belgium,  in 1965, and his M. Sc. EE (Burgerlijk Ingenieur) and PhD degrees from KU Leuven in 1968 and 1971 respectively. From 1971 until 1973 he was active in Bandung, Indonesia, establishing a Metal Industries Development Centre (MIDC) and as an associate professor at the Institut Teknologi Bandung.

He was a pioneer in robotics research in Europe and an active promoter of the mechatronics idea as a new paradigm for complex systems design.  He has published extensively on different aspects of robotics, mechatronics and flexible automation. His research interests include mechatronics, holonic manufacturing systems, behaviour based and medical robots, precision engineering. His book, “Design for the unexpected. From holonic manufacturing systems towards a humane mechatronics society”, sheds new light on how to design complex adaptive systems, allowing to harmoniously include the role of humans.

Hendrik Van Brussel is Fellow of SME and IEEE. He received honorary doctor degrees from Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule (RWTH), Aachen, Germany, from ‘Politehnica’ University in Bucarest, Romania, and from ‘Transilvania’ University Braşov, Romania. In 2000-2001 he served as President of CIRP (International Academy for Production Engineering), the world’s most authoritative learned society on production engineering. He is Honorary Member of the Class of Technical Sciences (KTW) of the Royal Flemish Academy of Belgium for Sciences and Arts (KVAB), Foreign Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences (IVA), Foreign Member of the US National Academy of Engineering (NAE), Honorary Member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA). He was President of euspen (European Society for Precision Engineering and Nanotechnology) from 2007 to 2009. Within KVAB he has chaired working groups publishing position papers on the future of the manufacturing industry and on the relation between robotisation and automation on employment and on the society at large.