Aerial Robotics, Kharagpur at IARC – 2016

There are various instances when the students of KGP showcase their dexterity at an international level and they deserve heartfelt applause for their hard work. One recent example is The Aerial Robotics team of IIT KGP, which has recently participated in the 25th International Aerial Robotics Competition which was held at Beihang University in China from 22nd to 24th September.

The ARK Team

The ARK Team

The ARK team in the arena

The ARK team in the arena

 

 

The Competition: The International Aerial Robotics Competition is the longest running collegiate aerial robotics challenge in the world. Entering its third decade of advancing the state of the art in autonomous aerial robotic behaviour, the competition continues to tackle challenges that are currently impossible for any flying robots owned by government or industry.

A total of ten teams participated in this year’s competition. For more information, visit: http://www.aerialroboticscompetition.org/index.php

 

Overview of Aerial Robotics: Aerial Robotics is the field of developing flying drones which find application in different industries. It could be the only solution to reach otherwise inaccessible sites to take images and collect information in natural disasters, environment protection, agriculture or in the maintenance of utilities and plants without stopping the production, thus saving millions of dollars. The aerial robotics team currently has developed six drones- Dove, Albatross(I & II), Butterfly, AR Drone, Canary(I &II) and Eagle.They used Eagle in the actual competition. Some details about its description are that its length is 100 cm and six brushless d.c. motors and three 6000 mAh lithium polymer batteries are used in it.

The Hexacopter Eagle

The Hexacopter Eagle

     

 

The Problem Statement: There is a square arena of 20m per side dimensions and the boundary consists of wide white lines bounding the sides of the square arena with a wide red line on one end and a wide green line on the other end. Ten programmable robots are in the centre of the arena and they can move randomly in any direction. Four of them have tall cylinders extending vertically and the task of the autonomous aerial robot is to analyze the directions of the various ground robots and redirect them towards the green end of the arena by colliding with them or touching their top while avoiding the four obstacle robots. The aerial robots must stay within the boundaries of the arena but are allowed to go up to approximately 2m outside the boundary momentarily (for up to five seconds). Aerial robots must not exceed an altitude of 3m above the floor, and they are allowed to land inside the arena. If 3 ground robots cross the red line, the game is over! The problem is the seventh mission of this 25-year-old competition.

The problem statement has been same since 2014 and even this year, owing to the extreme complexity of the problem, no team was able to complete the challenge.

The ARK Team with 'Eagle'

The ARK Team with ‘Eagle’

 

About Aerial Robotics IIT KGP: The team was founded one and a half years ago and this is the first time they participated in the aforementioned competition. Among the ten participants, it was the only team which took part for the first time in this competition. ARK’s aerial robot was a hexacopter named ’Eagle’ and the team consisting of seven people has won the ‘Best Team Cooperation Award’ at the event.

For more information visit: https://www.facebook.com/aerialroboticskgp/?fref=ts

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