Larry Silverberg


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Research Area: Dynamic system modeling and algorithm development for autonomy and exploration.

My Daily Calendar

I am a dynamicist. Over my career, I have studied and contributed to its advancement, publishing works that advance new and emerging areas within the discipline.  Along theoretical lines, I work on the four-dimensional formulation of macro-scale physics problems. In the more applied directions, one of the challenges that faces engineering is with dynamic modelling that integrates disciplines (mechanical, electrical, and thermodynamic), scale (small and large), and phase (gaseous, liquid, and solid states). On that subject, I teach the course Modern Modelling (MAE 789). The emphasis is on basic and computational issues of integrative modelling. Along the more applied lines, there is a growing need for algorithm development in engineering systems, like in autonomous operation of robotic systems.  Some of my work in this area focuses on the development of unmanned systems, mostly aerial systems. I  teach the course entitled mechatronics (MAE 320). In this introductory course, students learn how to integrate electronics and computer algorithms into hardware, then they form small teams and develop their own mechatronic systems.


Graduate Students and Ongoing Research Projects

UAS Organizational Deployment:  In partial fulfillment of the PhD, Joe Manning is developing a process for the deployment of aerial technologies at private and public organizations. In the fall of 2017 and 2018 he led groups of 12 students in a study abroad experience in Namibia studying UAS/wildlife interaction. Funded by the NC State University Study Abroad Office.

Homogeneous Two-Scale Particle Model Generation: In partial fulfillment of the PhD, Stephen Coppola is developing a method of generating homogeneous two-scale particle models. A special feature of the method is that homogeneity is achieved with a relatively small number of randomly distributed particles. He is focusing on electrostatic/mechanical interactions.

The Slow Roll in Autonomous Aerobatics: In partial fulfillment of the MS, Brett Pierce is developing and demonstrating a new autonomous algorithm for the slow roll. Congratulations to him for recently winning second place in the University Graduate Poster Competition for his research!

CAD Apps: A team of faculty and students are developing a new series of computer-aided design/exploration tools for early engineering education. The primary users are undergraduate students in mechanical, civil, and aerospace engineering. There are four apps: trusses, frames, vibration, and mechanisms. They enable students to perform design/exploration in statics, dynamics, solids, and vibration courses. This is a joint project with Drs. Eischen and Batestilli. Funded was provided by Mathworks, Inc.

KAUST Summer Program: Undergraduate students are exposed to research by spending four to five weeks working in research labs in engineering. Funded by the NC State University Global Training Initiative (GTI).

Basketball Dynamics: This is an extracurricular activity that began some twenty years ago aimed at understanding basketball dynamics. The work began with the development of a suite of simulation tools that accurately predict the trajectory of a basketball, its collisions with the backboard and rim, and statistically analyze the probability of a shot. The tools were applied to the study of best practices in the free throw and the bank shot. Current work focuses on the question of the superior gender when it comes to the free throw shot. The answer is expected to be announced next year. This work is with Dr. Chau Tran and many students over the years.

The Conversation

I am also a science writer for The Conversation.







Engineering Mechanics

Virginia Polytechnic Institute


Engineering Mechanics

Virginia Polytechnic Institute


Engineering Mechanics

Virginia Polytechnic Institute

Research Description

Dr. Silverberg's research is in dynamic system modeling and algorithm development for autonomy and exploration.


A New System Development Framework Driven by a Model-Based Testing Approach Bridged by Information Flow
Zhu, D., Pritchard, E. G. D., & Silverberg, L. M. (2018), IEEE SYSTEMS JOURNAL, 12(3), 2917–2924.
Gender comparison in consistency in the basketball free throw by an event-driven approach
Silverberg, L. M., Tran, C. M., & Laue, C. (2018), SPORTS ENGINEERING, 21(4), 333–340.
Cellular growth algorithms for shape design of truss structures
Tschida, C. E., & Silverberg, L. M. (2013), Computers and Structures, 116, 1–6.
Optimal Targets for the Bank Shot in Mens Basketball
Silverberg, L. M., Tran, C. M., & Adams, T. M. (2011), Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, 7(1).
Autonomous soaring: The montague cross-country challenge
Edwards, D. J., & Silverberg, L. M. (2010), Journal of Aircraft, 47(5), 1763–1769.
Control of underwater vehicles in full unsteady flow
Levedahl, B. A., & Silverberg, L. (2009), IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering, 34(4), 656–668.
Fourier series of half-range functions by smooth extension
Morton, J., & Silverberg, L. (2009), Applied Mathematical Modelling, 33(2), 812–821.
Characterizing hydrodynamic loads in full unsteady flow
Silverberg, L., & Levedahl, B. (2008), AIAA Journal, 46(12), 3159–3163.
Optimal release conditions for the free throw in men's basketball
Tran, C. M., & Silverberg, L. M. (2008), Journal of Sports Sciences, 26(11), 1147–1155.
Autonomous coordination of aircraft formations using direct and nearest-neighbor approaches
Silverberg, L., & Levedahl, B. A. (2005), Journal of Aircraft, 42(2), 469–477.

View all publications via NC State Libraries


Women & Minorities in STEM: Get Trained in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
NCSU NC Space Grant Consortium(2/01/17 - 4/30/18)
Digital Twin Research
National Institute of Aerospace(12/01/16 - 6/30/18)
CAD Apps for Core Courses in AE and ME Curricula: Bridge Funding 
The MathWorks, Inc.(1/01/16 - 5/31/17)
Angelfish: Initial Planning and Project Management
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)(6/19/14 - 1/31/16)
NCSU Autonomy
US Army - Army Research Office(8/01/14 - 8/31/15)
CAD Apps for Core Courses in AE and ME Curricula
The MathWorks, Inc.(5/16/13 - 5/14/15)
Building Design Apps for Early Engineering Education
National Science Foundation (NSF)(1/15/11 - 7/31/13)
Advancement of Thermal Sensing and Centering Algorithms
US Navy-Office Of Naval Research(1/01/10 - 5/15/10)
Principles of Autonomous Soaring
US Navy-Office Of Naval Research(1/01/09 - 12/31/09)
Autonomous Soaring Algorithm
US Navy-Office Of Naval Research(10/01/07 - 12/31/08)