• Elektrovej, 326, 106

    2800 Kgs. Lyngby


Accepting PhD Students

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile


Field of interest: Neurorobotics - Connecting artificial brains to robots

Short Bio: I am from Cagliari, Sardinia, an Italian island in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. I graduated as an electronic engineer from the University of Cagliari, Italy, and I got a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Granada, Spain.

My research at DTU is in the field of Neurorobotics, in particular, it is focused on an understanding of a modular approach for developing brain structures and connecting them for controlling different robotic platforms, e.g. modular robots, musculoskeletal robots, humanoids robots, and soft-robots. Most of my research has been performed in the context of European Projects (Sensopac, HBP, BioModular). Current research interests are in the following areas: Neuro-robotics, Neuromorphic Engineering, Bio-inspired control systems, Artificial Intelligence, and Applied Computational Neuroscience. The work has regarded adaptive motor control, human-robot compliant control, models of cerebellar control, and machine-learning algorithms.

Leader of the NeuroRobotics Technology Lab (NRT-LAB) at DTU

Watch here the inaugural talk (6 Sept. 2023).

Our goal is: to combine neuroscience, computer science, and biology towards the design of bio-mimetic control architectures for real-time motor control and learning of compliant robotic systems.

NRT-LAB Mission: The NRT-LAB mission is to open revolutionary paradigms in robotics and bio-inspired adaptive control to discover methods and technologies, which can be used for the benefit of society, i.e., in assistive robotics, in human-robot interactions, diagnosis and rehabilitation of neurodegenerative diseases.

Student supervision: If you are interested in making a bachelor's or master project in the field of interest, you can get inspired from current and/or former student projects with me as supervisor, or you can search for them on the DTU projektbank (look for my name).

Ongoing Research Projects and Roles:

  • 2022-2024 PI in LOCOPD project Funded by Lundbeck Foundation, LF experiment grant
  • 2022-2023 Co-Pi with DTI in Autonomous Robotic System for object grasping project funded by Odense Robotics
  • 2021-2024 Main Supervisor of 1 Ph.D. student in EU Marie S. Curie ITN Project: AEROTRAIN
  • 2022-2025 Main Supervisor of 1 PhD student. Project: Compliant physical human-robot interactions by combining nonlinear model-based control with learning-based principles (DTU-TU/e Eurotech Joint Alliance)

Completed Research Project and Roles:

  • 2016 - 2017 Researcher in Human Brain Project (HBP), SGA1, Neurorobotics SP10. HBP is a 10-years European project, which aims to map the human brain and create an ICT-based research infrastructure that can be used by researchers world-wide.
  • 02/2017-01/2019 Principal investigator in Marie Curie Project BioModularBiomimetic Learning Control Scheme for control of Modular Robots. This project has been funded by the European Commission (H2020 MarieSlowdowska Curie Actions - Individual Fellowship). 
  • 2018-2020 Principal investigator in the Co-Design Project 2 (CDP2 HBP SGA2) about cerebellar implementations in robotic systems.
  • 2017 - 2020 DTU team leader and coordinator in the HBP - SGA2.
  • 2019 - 2021 PI in Bio-Inspired Compliant Control for Safe Human-Robot Interactions funded by A.N. Neergaard og Hustrus Fond.

Main Ongoing International Collaborations With:

  • PolyU, University of Hong Kong, Asst. Prof. David Navarro Alarcón
  • The BioRobotics Institute at Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna, Pisa (Italy), Prof. C. Laschi, Asst. Prof. E. Falotico.
  • University of Bolonia, Italy, Prof. Andrea Acquaviva
  • Technical University of Munich, Germany, Prof. Joachim Hermsdörfer 
  • University of Copenhagen, Prof. Rune Berg
  • Technical University of Eindhoven, Asst. Prof. Irene Kuling, Assoc. Prof. Yoeri van de Burgt

In the news:

1. Robots contribute to mapping the brain

2. Researchers Develop an Artificial Cerebellum than Enables Robotic Human-like Object Handling

3.  ‘Results in Brief’ section of the European Commission’s CORDIS

4.  Complex model of the human brain controls robot

5. Audacious search for the roots of Parkinson's disease

Links to my profiles:




Google Scholar


HBP Neuro-robotics

DTU Neuro-robotics

Other information

11/2008 to 03/2009 - Visiting research student at Institute of Perception, Action and Behavior (IPAB) at the School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh, UK. Work on a comparison of different learning architectures and study how sætte the LWPR algorithm two themself (Advisors: Professor Dr. Sethu Vijayakumar, Dr. Stefan Klanke).

Participation in International Projects

2007 - 2010 European Project: Sensopac, University of Granada, Spain, Department of Computer Architecture and Technology (ATC).

2016 - 2017 Researcher in European Project: Human Brain Project, HBP SP 10 - SGA1, University of Denmark, Center for Playware, DTU ELEKTRO.

2017 - 2019 Principal investigator in BioModular - Biomimetic Learning Control Scheme for control of Modular Robots. This project has been funded by the European Commission (H2020 MarieSlowdowska Curie Actions - Individual Fellowship 2016 for two years). 

2017 -  Team leader and coordinator - European Project: Human Brain Project, HBP SP 10 - SGA2, University of Denmark, Center for Playware, DTU ELEKTRO.

2018 - 2020 Principal investigator in CoDesign Project (CDP2), EU FET Human Brain Project, HBP.

Language Skills:
Italian (Mother tongue)
French a2
Danish (a2)

Research areas

Adaptive control; Motor control and motor learning; Cerebellar learning; Machine learning;  Neuro-robotics;  Bio-inspired control system models; Modular robotics; Cloud or Service Robotics (ROS).

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water

Education/Academic qualification

PhD in Computer Science, University of Granada, Department of Computer Architecture and Technology (ATC), Spain


Master in Computing Networks Engineering degree, University of Granada, Spain


Research Assistant, University of Granada, Department of Computer Architecture and Technology (ATC), Spain


Master in Electronic Engineering degree, University of Cagliari


Bachelor in Electronic Engineering degree, University of Cagliari


External positions

Associate Professor

1 Jan 2021 → …

Assistant Professor, DTU

1 Feb 201931 Dec 2020

Postdoctoral researcher, DTU

16 Feb 201531 Jan 2019

Robotics consultant , CNR Institute and Telecommunications (IEIIT) / Telecom Italia SpA, Genova, Italy


DELE examiner, Italy


PhD Student, University of Granada, Spain


Site Manager in the Facility Management Area for Nazca Ltd, Milan, Italy, Nazca Ltd, Milan, Italy.



  • User defined:
  • Bio-inspired
  • Motor control and motor learning
  • Cerebellar internal models
  • Adaptive control
  • Neurorobotics
  • autonomous systems
  • Robotics, Automation
  • Brain


Dive into the research topics where Silvia Tolu is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or