Issue 2008_1 February '08


of the IFAC Technical Committee on Human-Machine-Systems


Issue #1, February 2008


 Download PDF Version


In this issue:

[1] Professor Noël Malvache deceased

[2] Preliminary Program for TC 4.5 Meeting and Workshops at IFAC World Congress

[3] Forthcoming events

[4] Editorials


Professor Noël Malvache deceased

nmalvacheWith sadness, we received the information about the death of Professor Noël Malvache, past President of the Université de Valenciennes et du Hainaut Cambrésis (UVHC) in Northern France. Professor Malvache died on 24 September 2007 at the age of 64 after a brain attack at Ajaccio (Corsica) where he was for one week of vacation with his wife Marie France. He has been retired since October 2006 from his duties at the University but he continued his elective duties of mayor of his village Saultain near Valenciennes as well as of a council member for the community of the cities around Valenciennes.

Professor Noël Malvache has created the lab LAIH (Laboratoire d’Automatique Industrielle et Humaine) in 1973 which was the first academic lab in the Human Engineering field in France and became one of the largest and most important Human-Machine Systems groups in the world. LAIH grew up, had been associated to CNRS, and merged into LAMIH (Laboratoire d’Automatique et de Mécanique Industrielles et Humaines) in 1992. From 1979 to 1986, Professor Noël Malvache was also President of his university UVHC.

Noël Malvache has worked a lot in the Human-Machine Systems field. He wrote his doctoral thesis on “Analyse et identification des systèmes visuel et manuel en vision frontale et périphérique chez l'Homme” at the Université de Lille in 1973. In IFAC, he started his many contributions in 1982 when he was the only French delegate in the International Program Committee (IPC) of the first IFAC/IFIP/IFORS/IEA Symposium on Analysis, Design, and Evaluation of Human-Machine Systems in Baden-Baden, Germany (in 1982, called Conference and Man-Machine Systems). He continued these duties as an IPC Member of our Symposium series until the event in Kyoto in 1998, and as a co-author of symposia papers until the event in Atlanta in 2004. He has also been member of the IFAC TC 4.5 Human-Machine Systems.

I am very glad that I have known Professor Noël Malvache since 1982 when he was a very enthusiastic member of the International Program Committee for our first IFAC Conference on Human-Machine Systems in Baden-Baden. He contributed so much to our field for more than two decades. Also, he supported so many talented younger scientists, and he was so important for all the colleagues, co-workers, and students, particularly in Valenciennes, as President of the University and as the founder and leader of the fantastic and highly successful lab LAIH. We send our sincere condolence for his family, for all the personnel of the LAMIH, and all the personnel of his university UVHC who knew him well. They all sincerely regret the loss of their colleague, head, and promoter of the University, many also of their friend Noël. His death is surely also a great loss for many of the international community, especially in our Human-Machine Systems field.

On 6 March 2008, a conference dedicated as an Hommage à Noël Malvache will be held in Paris by the French community of automation science, including the French NMO (National Member Organisation) of IFAC. It is my honour to present the plenary speech on “Modélisation Humaine” in memory of our wonderful colleague and friend Noël Malvache.


Gunnar Johannsen (

Founder & leader of the former IFAC Working Group on Human-Machine Systems


Preliminary Program for TC 4.5 Meeting and Workshops at IFAC World Congress

The chair of our TC 4.5 will be handed over to the new chair team (Prof. Yoon, Prof. Millot, and Prof. Chuan) at an administrative meeting on the IFAC World Congress. The meeting is open to every member of the TC 4.5, and scheduled for 2 p.m. on July 10th. If you wish to participate, you can already register for both the congress and the hotel.


Prof. Wan Chul Yoon

Prof. Patrick Millot

Prof. Tan Kay Chuan





Although the final program will not be announced earlier than on April 1st, a preliminary technical program has already been set up. Our TC’s workshops are scheduled for Thursday, July 10th, and Friday, July 11th, as follows:

  • “Human Cognition, Speech, and Decision-Making”: Thursday, July 10th, 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.
  • Modeling Human Performance”, Friday, July 11th, 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
  • “Human-Robot Interaction”, Friday, July 11th, 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.


Daniel Görlich (

IFAC TC 4.5 (HMS) Editorial


Forthcoming events

  • Hommage à Noël Malvache,
    March 6th, 2008, Paris/France

  • 8th Asia-Pacific Conference on Computer Human Interaction (APCHI),
    July 06th – 09th, 2008, Incheon/Korea,

  • IFAC TC 4.5 Administrative Meeting (see article above),
    arranged for at the IFAC World Congress, July 10th, 2008, 2:00 p.m.

  • 9th IFAC IFIP Workshop on Intelligent Manufacturing Systems Congress,
    October 09th – 10th, 2008, Szczecin/Poland


Daniel Görlich (

IFAC TC 4.5 (HMS) Editorial



  • You are cordially invited to contribute to the TC 4.5 newsletter. As usual the main topics are Human-Machine Systems and other related topics/events in your field of research/work. Please send your article as a Word or PDF document to
  • To subscribe to this newsletter service, send an email to with the subject: sub ifac_tc45


-- Copyright --

Copyright © 2008,

Center for Human-Machine Interaction
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence GmbH

All rights reserved.