Davide Scaramuzza

Professor and Director of the Robotics and Perception Group


Davide Scaramuzza

Davide Scaramuzza (born in 1980, Italian) is Professor of Robotics and Perception at both departments of Informatics (University of Zurich) and Neuroinformatics (University of Zurich and ETH Zurich), where he does research at the intersection of robotics, computer vision, and neuroscience. Specifically he investigates the use of standard and neuromorphic cameras to enable autonomous, agile, navigation of micro drones in search-and-rescue scenarios.

He did his PhD in robotics and computer vision at ETH Zurich (with Roland Siegwart) and a postdoc at the University of Pennsylvania (with Vijay Kumar and Kostas Daniilidis). From 2009 to 2012, he led the European project sFly, which introduced the PX4 autopilot and pioneered visual-SLAM-based autonomous navigation of micro drones.

For his research contributions in vision-based navigation with standard and neuromorphic cameras, he was awarded the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Career Award, the SNSF-ERC Starting Grant, a Google Research Award, KUKA, Qualcomm, and Intel awards, the European Young Research Award, the Misha Mahowald Neuromorphic Engineering Award, and several conference paper awards.

He coauthored the book "Introduction to Autonomous Mobile Robots" (published by MIT Press; 10,000 copies sold) and more than 100 papers on robotics and perception published in top-ranked journals (TRO, PAMI, IJCV, IJRR) and conferences (RSS, ICRA, CVPR, ICCV).

In 2015, he cofounded a venture, called Zurich-Eye, dedicated to the commercialization of visual-inertial navigation solutions for mobile robots, which later became Facebook-Oculus Switzerland and Oculus' European research hub. He was also the strategic advisor of Dacuda, an ETH spinoff dedicated to inside-out VR solutions, which later became Magic Leap Zurich.

Many aspects of his research have been prominently featured in the popular press, such as Discovery Channel, BBC, IEEE Spectrum, MIT Technology Review Magazine. Furthermore, I was invited to speak at TEDxZurich.


Davide Scaramuzza is most known for:

  • (1) pioneering event-camera-based state estimation in mobile robotics. 2014, 2017. Link to the research page.
  • (2) pioneering visual-inertial-SLAM-based autonomous navigation of micro drones. ICRA'10 paper.
  • (3) inventing the 1-point RANSAC algorithm, an effective and computationally efficient (1000 times faster) reduction of the standard 5-point RANSAC for visual odometry, when the vehicle motion is non-holonomic. IJCV'11 paper.
  • (4) authoring the open-source Omnidirectional Camera Calibration Toolbox for MATLAB (OCamCalib), which is also used at NASA, Philips, Bosch, and Daimler. LINK.


RPG members

  • 2017.09.27 - IROS 2017 Autonomous Drone Race 2nd place winner
  • 2017.09.27 - IROS 2017 Safety Security and Rescue Robotics Paper Award finalist
  • 2017.07.01 - Intel Network of Intelligent System Award (170k USD)
  • 2017.06.01 - RSS' 17 Best Student Paper Award Finalist
  • 2017.06.01 - Misha Mahowald Prize for Neuromorphic Engineering, for our "pathbreaking applications of neuromorphic engineering to robot navigation"
  • 2017.03.01 - EU Robotics Transfer Award to Fotokite
  • 2016.05.12 - Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship for Elias Mueggler (40k Euros)
  • 2016.10.01 - IROS'16 Best Application Paper Finalist
  • 2016.09.20 - BMVC'16 Best Industry Paper Award
  • 2016.03.30 - AAAI Video Award nomination
  • 2015.06.01 - RSS'15 Best Paper Award finalist!
  • 2014.11.21 - SNSF-ERC Starting Grant (1.5 million EUR for 5 years)
  • 2014.06.01 - IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Career Award for my "major contributions to robot vision and visually-guided micro aerial vehicles".
  • 2014.06.01 - KUKA Innovation Award (20,000 EUR)
  • 2014.04.01 - Google Research Award
  • 2012.06.01 - European Young Researcher Award 2012 - Sponsored by EU and Euroscience
  • 2010.03.30 - Finalist of the George Giralt EURON PhD award (for the best European PhD thesis)
  • 2009.09.09 - ROBOTDALEN Scientific Award for my PhD thesis. Sponsored by EU, IEEE, ABB.
  • 2009.09.09 - European Micro Aerial Vehicle competition.
  • 2005.04.01 - FEDERCOMIN-AICA Master thesis Award (best Italian Master thesis in ICT).
  • 2004.07.02 - Best student of the year Award (800 EUR), Ternana Opera Educatrice, Terni, Italy.
  • 1998.06.01 - Finalist at the Italian Mathematical Olympiads, Cesenatico, Italy


I was the main author of this second edition to which I dedicated a full year of intense writing and literature research. This second edition has been revised and updated throughout, with 130 pages of new material on such topics as locomotion, perception, localization, and planning and navigation. Problem sets have been added at the end of each chapter. Bringing together all aspects of mobile robotics into one volume, Introduction to Autonomous Mobile Robots can serve as a textbook or a working tool for beginning practitioners in their Master or PhD programs.

R. Siegwart, I.R. Nourbakhsh, and D. Scaramuzza

Introduction to autonomous mobile robots 2nd Edition (hardback)

A Bradford Book, The MIT Press, ISBN: 978-0-262-01535-6, February, 2011

MIT Website Book Website Buy

Select Publications

For a full list of publications, see here or Google Scholar.

Pose tracking with an Event-based camera

G. Gallego, Jon E. A. Lund, E. Mueggler, H. Rebecq, T. Delbruck, D. Scaramuzza

Event-based, 6-DOF Camera Tracking from Photometric Depth Maps

IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, 2017.

PDF YouTube


T. Rosinol Vidal, H.Rebecq, T. Horstschaefer, D. Scaramuzza

Hybrid, Frame and Event based Visual Inertial Odometry for Robust, Autonomous Navigation of Quadrotors

IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2018

PDF YouTube


M. Faessler, A. Franchi, and D. Scaramuzza

Differential Flatness of Quadrotor Dynamics Subject to Rotor Drag for Accurate Tracking of High-Speed Trajectories

IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2018.

PDF YouTube

3D reconstruction with an Event-based camera in real-time

H. Rebecq, G. Gallego, E. Mueggler, D. Scaramuzza

EMVS: Event-Based Multi-View Stereo - 3D Reconstruction with an Event Camera in Real-Time

International Journal of Computer Vision, 2018.

PDF YouTube


H.Rebecq, T. Horstschaefer, D. Scaramuzza

Real-time Visual-Inertial Odometry for Event Cameras using Keyframe-based Nonlinear Optimization

British Machine Vision Conference (BMVC), London, 2017.

Oral Presentation. Acceptance Rate: 5.6%

PDF YouTube


T. Cieslewski, E. Kaufmann, D. Scaramuzza

Rapid Exploration with Multi-Rotors: A Frontier Selection Method for High Speed Flight

IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Vancouver, 2017.

IROS'17 Best Search and Rescue Robotics Paper Award Finalist!

PDF YouTube


P. Foehn, D. Falanga, N. Kuppuswamy, R. Tedrake, D. Scaramuzza

Fast Trajectory Optimization for Agile Quadrotor Maneuvers with a Cable-Suspended Payload

Robotics: Science and Systems (RSS), Boston, 2017.

RSS'17 Best Student Paper Award Finalist! Oral Presentation.

PDF YouTube


J. Delmerico, S. Isler, R. Sabzevari, D. Scaramuzza

A comparison of volumetric information gain metrics for active 3D object reconstruction

Autonomous Robots, April 2017

PDF YouTube Software


G. Costante, J. Delmerico, M. Werlberger, P. Valigi, D. Scaramuzza

Exploiting Photometric Information for Planning under Uncertainty

Springer Tracts in Advanced Robotics (International Symposium on Robotic Research), 2017.

PDF PDF of longer paper version (Technical report) YouTube


T. Cieslewski, D. Scaramuzza

Efficient Decentralized Visual Place Recognition Using a Distributed Inverted Index

IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), Vol. 2, Issue 2, pp. 640-647, Apr. 2017.



D. Falanga, E. Mueggler, M. Faessler, D. Scaramuzza

Aggressive Quadrotor Flight through Narrow Gaps with Onboard Sensing and Computing using Active Vision

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), 2017.

PDF YouTube


C. Forster, L. Carlone, F. Dellaert, D. Scaramuzza

On-Manifold Preintegration for Real-Time Visual-Inertial Odometry

IEEE Transactions on Robotics, vol 33, no. 1, pp. 1-21, Feb. 2017.

RSS'15 Best Paper Award Finalist! Oral Presentation: Acceptance Rate 4%

PDF YouTube


A.L. Majdik, C. Till, D. Scaramuzza

The Zurich Urban Micro Aerial Vehicle Dataset

International Journal of Robotics Research, April 2017

PDF YouTube Dataset


E. Mueggler, H. Rebecq, G. Gallego, T. Delbruck, D. Scaramuzza

The Event-Camera Dataset and Simulator: Event-based Data for Pose Estimation, Visual Odometry, and SLAM

International Journal of Robotics Research, Vol. 36, Issue 2, pages 142-149, Feb. 2017.

PDF (arXiv) YouTube Dataset

Low-Latency Visual Odometry using Event-based Feature Tracks

B. Kueng, E. Mueggler, G. Gallego, D. Scaramuzza

Low-Latency Visual Odometry using Event-based Feature Tracks

IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), Daejeon, 2016.

IROS'16 Best Application Paper Award Finalist! Highlight Talk: Acceptance Rate 2.5%

PDF YouTube

EMVS paper

H. Rebecq, G. Gallego, D. Scaramuzza

EMVS: Event-based Multi-View Stereo

British Machine Vision Conference (BMVC), York, 2016.

BMVC'16 Best Industry Paper Paper Award! Oral Talk: Acceptance Rate 7%

PDF YouTube


A. Giusti, J. Guzzi, D.C. Ciresan, F. He, J.P. Rodriguez, F. Fontana, M. Faessler, C. Forster, J. Schmidhuber, G. Di Caro, D. Scaramuzza, L.M. Gambardella

A Machine Learning Approach to Visual Perception of Forest Trails for Mobile Robots

IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), Vol. 1, Issue 2, pp. 661-667, Jul. 2016

AAAI'16 Best Video Award finalist!

PDF Project Webpage and Datasets DOI YouTube


A.L. Majdik, D. Verda, Y. Albers-Schoenberg, D. Scaramuzza

Air-ground Matching: Appearance-based GPS-denied Urban Localization of Micro Aerial Vehicles

Journal of Field Robotics, 2015.

PDF YouTube Dataset


M. Faessler, F. Fontana, C. Forster, D. Scaramuzza

Automatic Re-Initialization and Failure Recovery for Aggressive Flight with a Monocular Vision-Based Quadrotor

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Seattle, 2015.

PDF YouTube


C. Forster, M. Pizzoli, D. Scaramuzza

Appearance-based Active, Monocular, Dense Reconstruction for Micro Aerial Vehicles

Robotics: Science and Systems (RSS), Berkely, 2014.



A. Censi, D. Scaramuzza,

Low-Latency Event-Based Visual Odometry

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Hong Kong, 2014.



C. Forster, M. Pizzoli, D. Scaramuzza

SVO: Fast Semi-Direct Monocular Visual Odometry

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Hong Kong, 2014.

PDF YouTube Software


M. Pizzoli, C. Forster, D. Scaramuzza

REMODE: Probabilistic, Monocular Dense Reconstruction in Real Time

IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Hong Kong, 2014.

PDF YouTube


D. Scaramuzza, M.C. Achtelik, L. Doitsidis, F. Fraundorfer, E.B. Kosmatopoulos, A. Martinelli, M.W. Achtelik, M. Chli, S.A. Chatzichristofis, L. Kneip, D. Gurdan, L. Heng, G.H. Lee, S. Lynen, L. Meier, M. Pollefeys, A. Renzaglia, Roland Siegwart, J.C. Stumpf, P. Tanskanen, C. Troiani, S. Weiss

Vision-Controlled Micro Flying Robots: from System Design to Autonomous Navigation and Mapping in GPS-denied Environments.

IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine, Vol. 21, Issue 3., 2014.



A. Censi, D. Scaramuzza

Calibration by Correlation using Metric Embedding from Non-metric Similarities

IEEE Transaction on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence, Vol. 35, Issue 10, 2013.

PDF Supplementary Material Datasets and Source Code


D. Scaramuzza

1-Point-RANSAC Structure from Motion for Vehicle-Mounted Cameras by Exploiting Non-holonomic Constraints

International Journal of Computer Vision, Volume 95, Issue 1, 2011.



D. Scaramuzza, F. Fraundorfer

Visual Odometry: Part I - The First 30 Years and Fundamentals

IEEE Robotics and Automation Magazine, Volume 18, issue 4, 2011.



Address: University of Zurich, Andreasstrasse 15, Office 2.10, 8050 Zurich, Switzerland
Email: sdavide (at) ifi (dot) uzh (dot) ch (NB: for INTERNSHIP, PhD, and Postdoc applications, please read below)
Phone: +41 44 635 24 09

  • INTERNSHIP applications: If you are seeking an internship in my lab you need to be enrolled in a Master program in your university. Applications from Bachelor students will not be answered. If you are a Master student and you wish to apply, please send me: 1) Your CV; 2) Transcripts of your Bachelor and Master grades; 3) a 2-page proposal containing: a) a description of the project you intend to do in my lab which is relevant to my research; b) comments on your experience in the area; c) related work, and d) a timeline of the project from the start to the end. Please make sure everything fits in two A4 page. Please do not send me reminders asking me the status of your application. I will never answer. I will answer only in case of positive feedback.
  • PhD and Postdoc applications: check out my open positions here. Please notice that unsolicited applications will not be answered.


In my free time, I like playing piano and magic tricks. My passion for Magic was born at age 14. I paid my undegraduate studies working part-time as magician in restaurants, bars, and children parties, but I also did several performances on stage in public squares and theatres. Nowadays, I still play magic tricks for colleagues and friends and it has almost become a tradition during the social banquets of robotics conferences (usually ICRA and IROS) ;-) Below, you can see one of my latest show during the Scientifica Science Festival at ETH Zurich. If you would like to see more, you can check out my personal YouTube channel! But notice that, if you are looking for robot videos, then you should check out my lab's YouTube channel! Here, you can read my interview from NCCR Robotics about my hobby and how I decided to follow the academic career (LINK)!

Davide Scaramuzza