Tech

April 13, 2012

DARPA seeks robot enthusiasts to face off


darpa-challenge

As iconic symbols of the future, robots rank high with flying cars and starships, but basic robots are already in use in emergency response, industry, defense, healthcare and education.

DARPA plans to offer a $2 million prize to whomever can help push the state-of-the-art in robotics beyond today’s capabilities in support of the DOD’s disaster recovery mission.

DARPA’s Robotics Challenge will launch in October 2012.  Teams are sought to compete in challenges involving staged disaster-response scenarios in which robots will have to successfully navigate a series of physical tasks corresponding to anticipated, real-world disaster-response requirements.

Robots played a supporting role in mitigating fallout from the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster in Japan, and are used by U.S. military forces as assistants for servicemembers in diffusing improvised explosive devices.  True innovation in robotics technology could result in much more effective robots that could better intervene in high-risk situations and thus save human lives and help contain the impact of natural and man-made disasters.

The DARPA Robotics Challenge consists of both robotics hardware and software development tasks. It is DARPA’s position that achieving true innovation in robotics, and thus success in this challenge, will require contributions from communities beyond traditional robotics developers. The challenge is structured to increase the diversity of innovative solutions by encouraging participation from around the world including universities, small, medium and large businesses and even individuals and groups with ideas on how to advance the field of robotics.

“The work of the global robotics community brought us to this point-robots do save lives, do increase efficiencies and do lead us to consider new capabilities,” said Gill Pratt, DARPA program manager.  “What we need to do now is move beyond the state of the art.  This challenge is going to test supervised autonomy in perception and decision-making, mounted and dismounted mobility, dexterity, strength and endurance in an environment designed for human use but degraded due to a disaster.  Adaptability is also essential because we don’t know where the next disaster will strike.  The key to successfully completing this challenge requires adaptable robots with the ability to use available human tools, from hand tools to vehicles.

“Robots undoubtedly capture the imagination, but that alone does not justify an investment in robotics,” said DARPA Acting Director, Kaigham J. Gabriel.  “For robots to be useful to DoD they need to offer gains in either physical protection or productivity.  The most successful and useful robots would do both via natural interaction with humans in shared environments.”

The DARPA Robotics Challenge supports the National Robotics Initiative launched by President Barack Obama in June 2011.

To answer questions regarding the Robotics Challenge and provide an opportunity for interested parties to connect, DARPA will hold a virtual Proposers’ Day workshop April 16.

For more information on the BAA and Proposers’ Day, visit http://go.usa.gov/mVj.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
NASA photograph by Carla Thomas

NASA, FAA, industry conduct initial sense-and-avoid test

NASA photograph by Carla Thomas NASA is using the remotely piloted Ikhana in the UAS-NAS project, one of the nation’s most important research efforts for improving safety and reducing technical barriers and operational challe...
 
 
nasa-spinoff

NASA Spinoff 2015 features space technology making life better on Earth

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=oWCWwEv_LcI&x-yt-ts=1421782837&x-yt-cl=84359240 NASA technologies are being used to locate underground water in some of the driest places on the Earth, buil...
 
 

NASA, Microsoft collaboration will allow scientists to ‘work on Mars’

NASA and Microsoft have teamed up to develop software called OnSight, a new technology that will enable scientists to work virtually on Mars using wearable technology called Microsoft HoloLens. Developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., OnSight will give scientists a means to plan and, along with the Mars Curiosity rover, conduct science...
 

 
NASA JPL image

NASA analysis: 11 trillion gallons to replenish California drought losses

NASA JPL image NASA satellite data reveal the severity of California’s drought on water resources across the state. This map shows the trend in water storage between September 2011 and September 2014. It will take about 11 tr...
 
 
NASA photograph by George Hale

NASA’s IceBridge Antarctic campaign wraps up

NASA photograph by George Hale A view from an IceBridge survey flight Nov. 3, 2014, showing a cloud’s shadow on crevassed Antarctic ice. NASA’s Operation IceBridge recently completed its 2014 Antarctic campaign, marking the...
 
 

NASA’s 2014 HS3 hurricane mission investigated four tropical cyclones

NASA photograph NASA’s Global Hawk takes off into the sunset after mission wrap-up at NASA Wallops and heads back to NASA Armstrong. NASA’s Hurricane and Severe Storms Sentinel, or HS3, mission investigated four tropical cyclones in the 2014 Atlantic Ocean hurricane season: Cristobal, Dolly, Edouard and Gonzalo. The storms affected land areas in the Atlantic...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>