2004 Robot Contest With 1million prize

This is for a Robot contest with the top prize of 1 million dollars.
Check out this news story, It sounds like fun. If we get the collective minds of the first community together, I know we can win this.


Carnegie Mellon has already done a lot of this. They had a car drive coast to coast some years ago. IT was autonomous about 98% of the time. I do not beleive it could re-fuel itself though. HAving seen their cars and the work that goes into them I suspect that willing this prize will cost multiple millions.

I’m not sure if it has be a land-based machine but I could imagine a model aircraft controlled by GPS. It has been done before for a round trip of 26 miles and worked flawlessly. If we made a larger one that could carry a lot more fuel, I think that would work. Or perhaps rig an old Cessna full size single engine aircraft to operate autonomously by GPS.

Or wait, better yet, a blimp. The helium provides the lift so the only energy needed would be for propulsion and we could work it out with the wind in our favor…

If it must be land-based, just forget it.

Well if it has to be land based check this out, I found it while looking for new spoke pattern for our wheels next year. We would just need a way to make it solar powered or something

That sort of reminds me of Nasa’s rocker buggy design. At least I think thats what they call it.:):confused: Hmmmm… can you also show me a link for that car that drove coast to coast automatically.

The group at CMU that sent the truck coast to coast (more or less) was the NAVLAB. Their web site is at http://www.ri.cmu.edu/labs/lab_28.html
If you are really interested in what CMU is doing with robots start at http://www.ri.cmu.edu/ and plan on spending a day or two looking through the links. If there is a university doing more with robotics than CMU I can not imagine where it is. :slight_smile:
Also check out a news release about DARPA funding for a mobile combat robot that CMU is building. That link is http://www.cmu.edu/cmnews/extra/020725_ugcv.html

well one thing is for sure we can’t use anything in the kits nor are we restricted isn’t this what many first kids ask for every year?..no restrictions

Here’s a link to the official site for the race:


They don’t have the rules yet, but based on the FAQ I’d say that teams will be given a course and the robot will have to stay within a certain distance of the defined course. The robot should be able to make tactical decisions about how to proceed on-the-fly and without operator input.

I’d guess that a chase vehicle will be required for safety reasons.

They didn’t quite explicitly say that the exact course won’t be known ahead of time, but it is strongly implied. They did say that it would be a good idea to be familiar with the area.

They may allow limited interaction with the robot, probably at the cost of time or other penalties if interaction is allowed.

Unlike FIRST, the rules will be posted and a comment period allowed, so that participants may assist in shaping the competition.

Anybody want to skip next year’s game and put the full resources of FIRST (including you wonderfully inventive students) in to this? $1M could probably keep our team going indefinitely.

Who says you can’t do FIRST and this at the same time. First only takes the 6 weeks of building, the competitions and then anything a team needs to get ready for the FIRST season. This would be a good thing to do along with FIRST I believe. This could work for teams who don’t have much to do in the off season. Any comments about this?

I don’t want to let the cat out of the bag until I know it’s in there (hmm … that almost sounds like shrodenger’s cat :)) … BUT, a mentor on my team sent out an e-mail requesting volunteers to start a team to compete in this. Of coures, we will need to find sponsors, but if this comes through, I think it would be cool.

Needless to say, I volunteered :slight_smile: