Final Dates Set for Major International Robotics Challenge in the United Arab Emirates

The contest will inevitably take up a large area of the circuit since it will consist of three challenges and a triathlon type Grand Challenge. Challenge 1 will require teams to use an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to locate, track and land on a moving vehicle. This means that the UAV must be capable of locating the moving vehicle, navigating the path and speed of the vehicle and land on the target location while the vehicle is in motion.

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Khalifa University, organizers of the Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC), have announced that the competition will take place from March 16 - 18, 2017 at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.


The contest will inevitably take up a large area of the circuit since it will consist of three challenges and a triathlon type Grand Challenge. Challenge 1 will require teams to use an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to locate, track and land on a moving vehicle. This means that the UAV must be capable of locating the moving vehicle, navigating the path and speed of the vehicle and land on the target location while the vehicle is in motion.

Challenge 2 requires an Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) to locate and reach a panel and physically operate a valve stem on it. It will require a UGV capable of navigating the path and locating the panel, identifying the valve, and choosing the appropriate tool to close it.

Challenge 3 requires a team of UAVs to work together in order to search, locate, track, pick up and place a set of still and moving objects. The Grand Challenge will require a team of robots (UAVs and UGVs) to compete in an event that combines challenges 1, 2 and 3 simultaneously.

"This will be a hard challenge," said Dr. Arif Al Hammadi, Khalifa University's Executive Vice President. "It will require the teams to not only utilize most known robotics technology, but also invent new ones. Undoubtedly, the resulting technologies from this competition will drive robotics research for some time and, as a university dedicated to the advancement of research and development in engineering and technology, we are eager to see what the results are."

The 45 teams selected to take part in the inaugural challenge come from leading universities and international organizations such as the Georgia Institute of Technology, the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), the National University of Singapore and Xi'an Jiaotong University.

Teams from the UAE, Italy, Germany, KSA, Russia, Singapore, Malaysia, Canada, South Korea, and Spain were chosen from over 316 teams from 45 countries, who expressed their interest in participating in the Challenge.

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The ST Robotics Workspace Sentry robot and area safety system are based on a small module that sends an infrared beam across the workspace. If the user puts his hand (or any other object) in the workspace, the robot stops using programmable emergency deceleration. Each module has three beams at different angles and the distance a beam reaches is adjustable. Two or more modules can be daisy chained to watch a wider area. "A robot that is tuned to stop on impact may not be safe. Robots where the trip torque can be set at low thresholds are too slow for any practical industrial application. The best system is where the work area has proximity detectors so the robot stops before impact and that is the approach ST Robotics has taken," states President and CEO of ST Robotics David Sands.