1st International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems
27-30 March, 1999
Michael Athans was born in Drama, Greece on May 3, 1937. He attended the University of California at Berkeley from 1955 to 1961 where he received his BSEE in 1958 (with highest honors), MSEE in 1959 and Ph.D. in control in 1961.
From 1961 to 1964 he was employed as a member of the technical staff at the MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Lexington, Mass. where he conducted research in optimal control and estimation theory. From 1964 till his retirement in 1998 he was a faculty member in the MIT Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences department, where he held the rank of Professor. He also was the director of the MIT Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (formerly the Electronic Systems Laboratory) from 1974 to 1981. He acted as the thesis supervisor for 40 MIT doctoral students. In 1978 he co-founded ALPHATECH Inc., Burlington, Mass., where he serves as Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Scientific Consultant. He has also consulted for numerous other industrial organizations and government panels. In 1995 he was Visiting Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the National Technical University of Athens, Greece. In 1997 and 1998 he was a Visiting Scientist in the Institute for Systems and Robotics, Instituto Superior Tecnico, Lisbon, Portugal.
Dr. Athans is the co-author of Optimal Control (McGraw Hill, 1966), Systems, Networks and Computation: Basic Concepts (McGraw Hill, 1972) and Systems, Networks and Computation: Multivariable Methods (McGraw Hill, 1974). In 1974 he developed 65 color TV lectures and study guides on Modern Control Theory ; these are distributed by the MIT Center for Advanced Engineering Study. In addition he has authored or co-authored over 325 technical papers and reports. His research interests and contributions span the areas of optimum system and estimation theory, multivariable control systems, and the application of these methodologies to defense, large space structures, IVHS transportation systems, aerospace, marine, automotive, power, manufacturing, economic, and C3 systems.
In 1964 he was the first recipient of the American Automatic Control Council's Donald P. Eckman Award "for outstanding contributions to the field of automatic control". In 1969 he was the first recipient of the Frederick E. Terman Award of the American Society for Engineering Education as "the outstanding young electrical engineering educator." In 1980 he received the second Education Award of the American Control Council for his "outstanding contributions and distinguished leadership in automatic control education." In 1973 he was elected Fellow of the IEEE and in 1977 Fellow of the AAAS. In 1983 he was elected Distinguished Member of the IEEE Control Systems Society. He received the 1993 H.W. Bode Prize from the IEEE Control Systems Society, which also included the delivery of the prestigious Bode Plenary Lecture at the 1993 IEEE Conference on Decision and Control. His latest award is the Richard E. Bellman Control Heritage Award of the American Automatic Control Council "In Recognition of a Distinguished Career in Automatic Control; As a Leader and Champion of Innovative Research; As a Contributor to Fundamental Knowledge in Optimal, Adaptive, Robust, Decentralized and Distributed Control; and as a Mentor to his Students" presented in June 1995 at the American Control Conference. In 1996 he was awarded honorary doctorates from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece, and from the Technical University of Crete, Chania, Crete, Greece.
Professor Athans has served in numerous committees of IEEE, IFAC, AACC and AAAS; he was president of the IEEE Control Systems Society from 1972 to 1974. In addition he is a member of AIAA, Phi Beta Kappa, Eta Kappa Nu, and Sigma Xi. He has served as Associate Editor of the IEEE Trans. on Automatic Control, Journal of Dynamic Systems and Control, and the IFAC journal "Automatica."