Nathan O. Lambert

I am a thid year Ph.D. student at the University of California, Berkeley, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences. I have the pleasure of being advised by Professor Kristofer Pister. For the summer of 2019, I had the pleasure to be working with Roberto Calandra at Facebook AI Research, which is now a continuing collaboration!

I completed my undergraduate education at Cornell University's College of Engineering in 2017. While there, I worked with the Lab of Plasma Studies and SonicMEMs Lab .

Email  /  CV  /  Google Scholar  /  LinkedIn  /  Github  /  Blog


I'm interested in the intersection of machine learning and control, with applications to experimental robotics. With Kris, I am working on direct synthesis of robot controllers with model-based reinformcent learning where we do not need any past system knowledge.

Objective Mismatch in Model-based Reinforcement Learning
Nathan Lambert, Brandon Amos, Omry Yadan, Roberto Calandra
Arxiv Preprint, 2019
Paper link coming soon   /  Workshop Presentation

Learning how to walk with a real-world hexapod using a hierarchy of model-free RL for basic motion primitives with model-based RL for higher level planning.

Learning Generalizable Locomotion Skills with Hierarchical Reinforcement Learning
Tianyu Li, Nathan Lambert, Roberto Calandra, Franziska Meier, Akshara Rai
Arxiv Preprint, 2019
Paper   /  Related Press

Learning how to walk with a real-world hexapod using a hierarchy of model-free RL for basic motion primitives with model-based RL for higher level planning.

Low Level Control of a Quadrotor with Deep Model-Based Reinforcement Learning
Nathan Lambert, Daniel Drew, Joseph Yaconelli, Roberto Calandra, Sergey Levine, Kristofer Pister
IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2019
Paper  /  website

We used deep model-based reinforcement learning to have a quadrotor learn to hover from less than 7 minutes of all experimental training data. No system knowledge was needed for thise experiment, reading raw sensor values and commading motor PWMs.

Toward Controlled Flight of the Ionocraft: A Flying Microrobot Using Electrohydrodynamic Thrust With Onboard Sensing and No Moving Parts
Daniel Drew, Nathan Lambert, Craig Schindler, Kris Pister
IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters (RA-L), 2018

A collection of steps towards controlled flight of The Ionocraft, a completely silent microrobot with ion thrust!

Enhanced Lithium Niobate Pyroelectric Ionizer for Chip-Scale Ion Mobility-Based Gas Sensing
K.B. Vinayakumar, Ved Gund, Nathan Lambert, S Lodha, Amit Lal
IEEE Sensors, 2016

We used a pyroelectric crystal to cause dielectric breakdown events in the air, which can be used for chip scale ion based gas sensing.


Lecturer - CS188 Introduction to Artifical Intelligence, Spring 2020.
Website / Co-Instructor

Graduate Student Instructor - EECS16B Designing Information Devices and Systems II, Fall 2019.
Website / Instructor


Teaching Assistant - ECE 3250: Mathematics of Signal and System Analysis, Fall 2016.
Lectures / Instructor

Grader - ECE 4320: Integrated Micro-Sensors and Actuators, Spring 2017.


I had the pleasure of rowing for Cornell's Varisty Lightweight Crew for four years after walking on, we had some success. At Berkeley, I coached the lightweight rowing team for a year. I am shifting to triathlons & continuing competition - for the endurance training folk you can find my strava here .

Otherwise, my personal interests are generally in nuitrition, training, math, robot ethics, and more. I follow Tesla fairly closely after spending a summer there. Graduate school has been an emergence of reading books for me, and my current recommended list in no particualr order is: Godel Escher Bach, An Eternal Golden Braid; Shoe Dog; A Brief History of Time; Tribe; Deep Nuitrition

Press and Media

Some of my work has been featured elsewhere. In my time, the ionocraft was featured in the IEEE Spectrum Magazine here. Back at Cornell, a fun robotics-like project was published in Circuit Cellar, and got some press.

Last updated 20 November 2019, this guy makes a nice wesbite.