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Jeff Delaune


4800 Oak Grove Drive
M/S 198-205

Pasadena, CA 91109

Member of:

347T - Aerial Mobility

Jeff Delaune

Robotics Technologist


Jeff Delaune is a robotics technologist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He develops autonomous navigation systems for planetary exploration, with a focus on flying vehicles. Jeff was part of the navigation team for NASA’s Mars Helicopter flight project. His interests include state estimation, sensor fusion, perception, computer vision, system engineering and mission design.


  • Ph.D. in Robotics, Institut Supérieur de lAéronautique et de lEspace (ISAE), 2013
  • M.S. in Astronautics and Space Engineering, Cranfield University, 2009
  • M.S. in Engineering, École Centrale de Nantes, 2009
  • B.S. in Engineering, École Centrale de Nantes, 2007

Professional Experience

  • Robotics Technologist, Jet Propulsion Lab, (2016-present)
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Jet Propulsion Lab, (2015-2016)
  • Founder, Boldmap, (2015)
  • Research Engineer, French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA), (2013-2015)

Research Interests

  • State Estimation, Bayesian Filtering, Non-Linear Optimization, SLAM
  • Sensor fusion: visual, inertial, range, solar, etc.
  • Mission Design and Analysis, Space System Engineering


  1. A. Schutte, J. Delaune, E. Sklyanskiy, R. Hewitt, S. Daftry, M. Quadrelli, L. Matthies, "Integrated Simulation and State Estimation for Precision Landing on Titan," IEEE Aerospace Conference, Big Sky, MT, USA, 05 February 2020.
  2. L. Matthies, S. Daftry, B. Rothrock, A. Davis, R. Hewitt, E. Sklyanskiy, J. Delaune, A. Schutte, M. Quadrelli, M. Malaska, "Terrain Relative Navigation for Guided Descent on Titan," IEEE Aerospace Conference, Big Sky, MT, USA, 05 February 2020.
  3. Delaune, J., Brockers, R., Bayard, D.S., Dor, H., Hewitt, R., Sawoniewicz, J., Kubiak, G., Tzanetos, T., Matthies, L. and Balaram, J., "Extended Navigation Capabilities for a Future Mars Science Helicopter Concept," Accepted in IEEE Aerospace Conference, Big Sky, Montana, March 2020, 10 January 2020.
  1. Bayard, D., Conway, D.T., Brockers, R., Delaune, J., Matthies, L., Grip, H.F., Merewether, G., Brown, T., San Martin, A.M., "Vision-Based Navigation for the NASA Mars Helicopter," AIAA SciTech Forum, 01 January 2019.
  2. Delaune, J., Hewitt, R., Lytle, L., Sorice, C., Thakker, R. and Matthies, L., "Thermal-Inertial Odometry for Autonomous Flight Throughout the Night," IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, 01 January 2019.
  1. S. Daftry, J. Delaune, R. Bhuta, L. Matthies, "Towards Vision-based Safe Autonomous Landing of MAVs at Night," IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) Workshop, Brisbane, Australia, 03 October 2018.
  1. J. Delaune, G. Le Besnerais, T. Voirin, J.L. Farges, C. Bourdarias,, "Visual-inertial navigation for pinpoint planetary landing using scale-based landmark matching," Robotics and Autonomous Systems, Volume 78, 63–82, 01 April 2016.
  1. T. Voirin, J. Delaune, G., Le Besnerais, J.L. Farges, H. Krueger,, "Challenges of pinpoint landing for planetary exploration: the LION absolute vision-based navigation system step-wise validation approach," 10th International Planetary Probe Worshop, 01 January 2013.
  1. J. Delaune, G. Le Besnerais, M. Sanfourche, T. Voirin, C. Bourdarias, J.L. Farges., "Optical Terrain Navigation for Pinpoint Landing: Image Scale and Position-Guided Landmark Matching," Proceedings of the 35th Annual Guidance and Control Conference, 01 January 2012.
  2. M. Sanfourche, J. Delaune, G. Le Besnerais, H. de Plinval, J. Israel, P. Cornic, A. Treil, Y. Watanabe, A. Plyer,, "Perception for UAV: Vision-Based Navigation and Environment Modeling," Aerospace Lab, Issue 4, 01 January 2012.
  1. J. Delaune, G. Le Besnerais, M. Sanfourche, J.L. Farges, C. Bourdarias, T. Voirin,, "Camera-Aided Inertial Navigation for Pinpoint Landing on Rugged Terrains," 8th International Planetary Probe Workshop, 01 January 2011.
  2. J. Delaune, G. Le Besnerais, J.L. Farges, C. Bourdarias, T. Voirin, A. Piquereau,, "Tightly-Integrated Visual and Inertial Navigation for Pinpoint Landing on Rugged Terrains," 11th Symposium on Advanced Space Technologies in Robotics and Automation, 01 January 2011.
  1. J. Delaune, D. De Rosa, S. Hobbs,, "Guidance and Control system design for Lunar Descent and Landing," AIAA Guidance, Navigation and Control Conference and Exhibit, 01 January 2010.