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Maryland Hosts Inaugural Robot Speedway Competition, Oct. 4

Maryland Hosts Inaugural Robot Speedway Competition, Oct. 4

A television crew from WTTG Fox 5 in Washington, D.C., films students' robots live from the Kim Building plaza.
A television crew from WTTG Fox 5 in Washington, D.C., films students' robots live from the Kim Building plaza.


On Saturday, October 4, the University of Maryland will host a new regional robotics event, the first annual Autonomous Small Robot Speedway competition. The inaugural race will take place from 12:00 - 3:30 pm on the College Park campus next to the Computer Science Instructional Center in the XX parking lot.

All are welcome to attend the competition, and there is no charge for spectators.

The event was conceived and organized by the Washington, DC Chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers Robotics and Automation Society (IEEE-RAS) in conjunction with members of the student organization Robotics@Maryland, and Maryland's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE). The event is co-sponsored by IEEE-RAS, the ECE Department, and Robotic Research, LLC, based in Gaithersburg, Md.

The competition was originally scheduled for Saturday, September 6, but was postponed due to tropical storm Hanna.

The Robotics@Maryland team is sponsored by the ECE Department, the Department of Aerospace Engineering, the Institute for Systems Research, the Clark School of Engineering, and the Office of the Vice President for Research, and also receives corporate support from Clark School Corporate Partner BAE Systems, E.K. Fox, and Apple.

The competition, which attracted seven teams for its inaugural event, will take place on campus in the XX parking lot, next to the CSIC Building. Each team’s autonomous robot will race around an array of traffic cones organized in an elliptical shape.

The robots' autonomous navigation will be comprised of obstacle avoidance, dead reckoning, telemetry, onboard sensor processing, computer vision, and dealing with uncertainty in environmental conditions such as uneven lighting conditions, uneven surface, and unevenly spaced cones.

This systems engineering exercise will provide students at the University of Maryland, as well as those from other teams engaged in the competition, an opportunity to practice an integrated, interdisciplinary approach to solving problems and optimizing performance.

For more information, please visit the following websites:

Autonomous Robotic Speedway Competition

Robotics@Maryland

October 1, 2008


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