Singapore’s TechX Urban Warfare Robot Challenge
A proliferation of UGV (unmanned ground vehicle) robots and waldos heads for the world’s conflict zones. Back in America, DARPA’s Grand Challenge dared inventors to produce a true robotic vehicle that could navigate a per-set course with no human assistance. Now Singapore’s Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) is offering one million Singapore dollars ($652,000) in the TechX challenge to whoever develops a robot that completes a stipulated set of tasks related to urban warfare.
“DSTA wants to create a robot that “must, on its own, be able to navigate both indoors and outdoors in an urban landscape and accomplish a set of assigned tasks within a stipulated time”… This robot must be able to negotiate a staircase and use the elevator to dash from one floor to another without the aid of satellite navigation, which may not be available indoors.”
Non-Singaporean firms may participate, as long as they collaborate with local partners. Applications are due by the end of May 2007, and the shortlist will be announced in June 2007. A qualifying round will take place in May 2008, with the final round and time/finish competition scheduled for August 2008. See January 24, 2007 New Scientist article.