Deakin University’s Centre for Intelligent Systems Research has successfully hosted for the first Annual Autonomous Ground Vehicle Competition.
AGVC 2013, sponsored by the Defence Science and Technology Organisation, aims to stimulate robotics related research in Australian tertiary institutions.
“It was an honour for Deakin to host this event,” said the University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor, (Research) Professor Lee Astheimer.
“It was a pleasure to see so many Universities represented, including from Western Australia.
Professor Astheimer also presented the winners with the awards.
First prize went to one of Deakin’s two teams in the competition, Order 66.
Second place went to the dUNSWiftly team from the University of New South Wales.
Deakin’s second team, Aperire Incognatum, took third prize.
The Innovation Award went to a team from the Australian National University, Trial and Error.
Brigadier (retired) Stephen Quinn, DSTO's Chief Scientist was impressed with the level of enthusiasm and commitment of the teams.
"The practical application of engineering and IT skills in defence-related technologies is a growth area globally and has potential for growth in Australia," he said.
Professor Saeid Nahavandi, the Director of CISR, congratulated all the participants and urged them to return to their universities to encourage them to take part next year.
“I would like to see this become part of the curriculum, not as was in some cases, people doing it in their spare time,” he said.
With a total prize pool of more than $75,000 the AGVC competition requires entrants to develop autonomous robotic vehicles and successfully negotiate an outdoor obstacle course under a prescribed time.
To complete the challenge competitors must: navigate autonomously within the marked lanes; maintain minimum/maximum speed between 1.6-16 kph and negotiate flags and obstacles to locate multiple navigation waypoints.
In 2013, 12 teams represented 10 universities.
CISR was contracted by DSTO to host the competition and to provide research support, logistics and modelling and simulation capabilities. The Centre has a track record in providing robotic solutions to Defence and has a good understanding of Australian Defence requirements and procedures.