Markus Hehn is a co-founder and the chief technology officer of Verity, the global leader in autonomous indoor drone systems and a leading provider of drone failsafe technology. He leads the development of Verity’s indoor drone systems, including the development of reliable and safe drones, indoor positioning systems, and control software. Founded in 2014, Verity’s drones have completed more than 200,000 autonomous flights safely above people, in more than 100 facilities in 20 countries worldwide. Its systems also enable the deployment of dynamic sensors and other payloads anywhere in commercial and industrial facilities. Verity Studios’ drones have been used by some of the world’s biggest names in entertainment, including Cirque du Soleil and Madison Square Garden, and in global tours of major artists including Celine Dion, Drake and Metallica.
Markus completed his doctoral studies with Professor Raffaello D’Andrea at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control, ETH Zürich (Switzerland). His research lies in the field of algorithms for the control of aerial vehicles, with a specific focus on exploiting the exceptional agility of the quadrotor vehicles that are used in the Flying Machine Arena. He is interested in understanding the physical limits of how quickly these vehicles can move, real-time trajectory generation algorithms that get close to these physical limits, and complex tasks that rely on the vehicle’s agility (such as balancing an inverted pendulum on a quadrocopter). He also contributed to the Flight Assembled Architecture project, for which he developed task-specific trajectory generation algorithms, worked on the robustness of the estimation algorithms to measurement data blackouts, and assisted with the implementation of a space reservation system.
Markus studied mechatronics at TU Darmstadt (Germany) and ETH Zürich (Switzerland) from 2003 to 2009, receiving a scholarship from Robert Bosch GmbH for his graduate studies. He has worked on optimizing the operating strategy of Diesel engines to reduce emissions and fuel consumption with Professor Lino Guzzella (as outlined in this paper), on the characterization of component load profiles for axle-split hybrid vehicle drive trains at Robert Bosch GmbH (a system that has now been commercialized in the Peugeot 3008 HYbrid4), and on the performance development of V8 Formula One racing engines at Mercedes-Benz HighPerformanceEngines (evolutions of these engines powered the 2008 and 2009 Formula One World Drivers’ Champions).