City:  Stuttgart
Date:  Nov 28, 2023

Master Thesis - Point cloud segmentation for autonomous navigation of mobile outdoor robots

The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft ( currently operates 76 institutes and research institutions throughout Germany and is the world’s leading applied research organization. Around 30 000 employees work with an annual research budget of 2.9 billion euros. 

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In the Professional Service Robots - Outdoor research group we develop autonomous, mobile robots for a variety of outdoor applications, such as agriculture and forestry. The focus is on the development of an autonomous outdoor navigation solution as well as the hardware of the robots.
Compared to predictable indoor environments the outdoor areas inherit more and unknown obstacles. Besides the obstacles detection and environment classification based on camera data, the LiDAR point clouds can be utilized to increase the robustness and precision of these classifications.
In this thesis you will contribute to the environment understanding of the robot by developing a point cloud segmentation method to improve the following localization and obstacle avoidance algorithms.


What you will do

Our mobile outdoor robot CURTmini increasingly has to operate in complex and versatile environments, such as coffee plantations, orchards and vineyards with challenges like working near and with human workers and different lightning and weather conditions. For this, you are to become part of the team that develops and tests navigation solutions for outdoor mobile robots. Your work will be focused on the development and implementation of a point cloud segmentation method, that distinguishes dynamic and static objects in different classes to improve the environment interpretation and thereby localization and obstacle avoidance.


What you bring to the table

  • Profound knowledge of C++ /Python 
  • Experience with ROS is preferred 
  • Experience with neural networks for image or point cloud processing
  • Analytical mindset and experience in algorithm development
  • Enthusiasm for mobile robotics
  • Fluent in English or German 


What you can expect

  • Cutting-edge technology in the field of outdoor mobile robotics 
  • Hands on with our robots on our own test fields
  • Take on responsibility and freedom to implement your own ideas
  • Working together with a motivated team of robotics enthusiasts
  • Modern working atmosphere including Cake Friday


We value and promote the diversity of our employees' skills and therefore welcome all applications - regardless of age, gender, nationality, ethnic and social origin, religion, ideology, disability, sexual orientation and identity. Severely disabled persons are given preference in the event of equal suitability. 

With its focus on developing key technologies that are vital for the future and enabling the commercial utilization of this work by business and industry, Fraunhofer plays a central role in the innovation process. As a pioneer and catalyst for groundbreaking developments and scientific excellence, Fraunhofer helps shape society now and in the future. 

Interested? Apply online now. We look forward to getting to know you!

Frau Lisa Bauer
Tel. +49 711 970-3681

Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA 


Requisition Number: 67063                Application Deadline:


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