The DARPA Robotics Challenge

During the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear accident, robots weren’t able to inspect the facility, assess damage, and fix problems. DARPA wants to change this.

The DARPA Robotics Challenge intends to jump-start development of robots that can respond to disasters - both man-made and natural. Robots that compete in the DRC are designed to work in dangerous, degraded, human-engineered environments. They must open doors, turn valves, and connect a hose. They must use hand tools to cut through a panel. They must drive a vehicle, clear debris, and climb a stair ladder. It’s all part of a disaster response scenario that the robots must complete during the challenge.

These tasks are relatively easy for humans, but very difficult for robots. Performing them requires significant advances in perception, supervised autonomy, decision-making, mobility, dexterity, strength, and endurance. At stake is a $2 million grand prize and bragging rights as the most capable robot on the planet.

DARPA will hold the Robotics Challenge Finals on June 5-6, 2015 at the Fairplex in Pomona, CA. Tartan Rescue will compete with ten other teams from the trials, plus additional teams that enter through a qualifier that DARPA will hold in early 2015.

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