Call for UK and international entries for FIRA RoboWorld Cup 2012

Issue date: 06 September 2011


Robots playing football and basketball, climbing, or running a marathon will all be on display at the FIRA RoboWorld Cup in Bristol from 20-25 August 2012. This is the first time the RoboWorld Cup has been held in the UK.

The event will take place between the Olympics and the Paralympics next summer and will be hosted by Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL) – collaboration between the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England, Bristol.

Student teams with expertise in robotics and engineering from universities around the world are now being invited to take up the challenge and enter the competition.

Professor Alan Winfield, Publicity Chair of the RoboWorld Cup, said, “We want this RoboWorld Cup to be the best ever and for that we need student teams from across the UK and around the world to take up the challenge and enter the competition.

“Teams need to be multi-disciplinary with a mix of computer scientists, electrical and mechanical engineers, as well as having expertise in vision and sensing. Teams working with humanoid robots, for example those that play football, have to focus on the gait of the robots, to make sure that when they move quickly, they don't stumble. As these robots have evolved they have become faster, so it is crucial to be able to manage the way they move.

“This event is a fantastic opportunity for students to showcase their skills, network with other roboticists and learn about the potential for robotics. We are delighted to be hosting this event in Bristol and we are looking forward to welcoming the world's most inventive and dedicated robotics experts to the city.”

The aim of the tournament is to inspire interest in robotics as the teams design and build robots to compete against each other in a variety of challenges. The technology developed for the FIRA RoboWorld Cup requires a holistic view, involving mechanical, electronic and software engineering, integrating advanced AI, automated control and image processing technology. These are the core technologies in robotics, and key to the future development of this field.

Isobel Pollock, President Elect of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, sponsors of the event, said: “As we move forward robots are going to play an increasingly important part in all our lives. Robotics will be used to perform ever more sophisticated medical treatments, to control our transport and to complete tasks in the home. Care for the elderly will also benefit through research into socially assisted technology.

“The RoboWorld Cup is a way to inspire people about the potential of robots.”

Robot soccer began in 1995. The Federation of International Robot-soccer Association (FIRA) was founded in June 1997 with the goal of taking the spirit of science and technology of robotics to the laymen and the younger generation. Alongside the games, a major scientific conference, the FIRA/TAROS Congress, will bring together the leading experts in robotics in the UK and worldwide.

The FIRA RoboWorld Cup 2012 is sponsored by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and a range of industrial partners.

Staff and students from BRL have already formed a team to enter the Humanoid Robot World Cup Soccer (HuroSot).

Full details about the different disciplines and requirements for each sport can be found at: http://www.fira-taros2012.org.uk/fira-cup/disciplines

-ENDS-

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