Will Thibault

Humanoid Robotics Researcher


I am humanoid robotics researcher and PhD student at the University of Waterloo. I am a member of the CERC in HCRMI (Canada Excellence Research Chair in Human-Centred Robotics and Machine Intelligence) lab under the supervision of Katja Mombaur. My research focuses on humanoid whole-body motion generation and control using combined model-based and model-free approaches with REEM-C and TALOS humanoid robots by PAL Robotics.

Recently, I was a software engineering intern at Apptronik. My work focused on distributed reinforcement learning for bimanual manipulation. Seeing the final development and launch of the Apollo humanoid during my internship was certainly a highlight!

I was also a member of the HCRMI lab during my MASc where my research focused on benchmarking whole-body manipulation and loco-manipulation motions of humanoid robots as part of the EUROBENCH project using REEM-C. I developed an initial benchmark for whole-body manipulation and loco-manipulation tasks with the REEM-C. Additionally, I created a whole-body bimanual workspace analysis for two-handed manipulation of objects with REEM-C and TALOS.

I received a BASc in Mechatronics Engineering from the University of Waterloo. During my BASc I had co-op work terms at a ON Semiconductor, the University of Waterloo’s EmRG, ATS Automation, Powerhouse Controls and Skyjack in roles ranging from RF engineering to controls systems design to CAD systems.

My goal is to have a career in humanoid robotics research in the area of whole-body motion and loco-manipulation. Humanoid robots offer the unique ability to operate in human designed spaces and I hope to use them to solve real-world problems.

selected publications

  1. A standardized benchmark for humanoid whole-body manipulation
    Thibault, W., Andrade Chavez, F. J., and Mombaur, K.
    IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots (Humanoids 2022). 2022
  2. Bimanual Manipulation Workspace Analysis of Humanoid Robots with Object Specific Coupling Constraints
    Thibault, W., Rajendran, V., and Mombaur, K.
    IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots (Humanoids 2022). 2022