Yang Gao


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    Personal profile

    Biographical details

    Professor Yang Gao is the Professor of Robotics and heads the Centre for Robotics Research at KCL from August 2023. Before joining KCL, she spent 19 years at University of Surrey UK where she founded/led the multi-award winning STAR LAB (Space Technology for Autonomous & Robotic systems Laboratory) and the start-up business Ai4SPACE Ltd. Prof Gao specializes in robotic sensing, perception, visual GNC and biomimetic mechanisms for space and other industry applications for extreme environments. She brings over 20 years of research experience in developing robotics and autonomous systems, in which she has been the Principal Investigator of inter/nationally teamed projects (net worth >£10m) funded by UK Research Innovation (UKRI), Royal Academy of Engineering, European Commission, European Space Agency (ESA), UK Space Agency (UKSA), as well as industries. 

    Prof Gao is actively involved in design and development of real-world space missions including ESA ExoMars, Proba3 and VMMO (lunar ice mapper), UK's CLEAR, MoonLITE and Moonraker, and CNSA Chang'E3. Her work has also been applied to several non-space sectors including nuclear, oil/gas and agriculture through technology transfer and spin-offs.

    Prof. Gao also actively serves the international community, e.g. being the Editor-in-Chief of Wiley Journal of Field Robotics, the Co-Chair of the IEEE-RAS Technical Committee on Space Robotics, and Mentor of the United Nations Space4Women program. 

    Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

    In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

    • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
    • SDG 4 - Quality Education
    • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
    • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
    • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
    • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
    • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
    • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals


    • TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
    • Robotics
    • Mechanism Design
    • Mechatronics
    • TK Electrical engineering. Electronics Nuclear engineering
    • Artificial Intelligence
    • Autonomous Systems
    • TL Motor vehicles. Aeronautics. Astronautics
    • Space Engineering

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