robosub 2013

Robosub Finals

Wow! After many setbacks, a shot at the wildcard slot in the finals, and two great runs at the course, we have come from behind and taken fourth place in the Robosub 2013 competition!

Early Sunday morning, we had an opportunity to make a "Second Chance" run at the course. If we scored above a point threshold AND had the highest score of all the teams making second chance runs, then we would earn the wildcard slot in the finals. We decided to do a simple run at the sonar task, and despite several days of problems the robot performed well enough to put us over the point threshold. For the rest of the day we waited anxiously to see how the other teams did at their second chance runs; then, only a few minutes before the finals started, we were announced as the wildcard finalists!

Chris appeared on camera as our announcer for the webcast, alongside host Zoz Brooks (left) and AUVSI Foundation Executive Director Daryl Davidson (right).

We made a simple run for the correct octagon using our sonar system, which Tortuga managed on its first try.

The team celebrates after completing our highest scoring run this competition.

The team sporting their University of Maryland war paint (back-left to front-right): alumnus Steve (currently employed at Qualcomm), Josh, Nick, Eliot, alumnus Kit (currently employed at Amazon), Johnny, Donald, Kanga, Kate, Stephen, and Chris.

We'd like to thank our sponsors for making this all possible, especially last-minute sponsors Dr. Pines and the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, both of the University of Maryland. We had a great year and are looking forward to another next year...hopefully with a brand new robot! Stay tuned for updates!

RoboSub Catch-Up and Semi-Finals

Sorry about not updating in several days - we have been working very hard testing and fixing several problems on our robot, which hasn't left much time for blogging. Today, all of those late nights paid off; we scored high enough during our second chance run to earn the wildcard slot, netting us a chance to compete in the finals! The finals are being webcast RIGHT NOW on, and if you miss that you can catch the highlights on AUVSI's youtube page.

UPDATE: The finals are over now, but you can still see the entire broadcast at the Robosub 2013 Livestream page or the recap videos at the AUVSI Youtube page.

Robosub Day One + Two

Yesterday was the first official day of Robosub, and our robot arrived!

Later that day was the competition briefing, where we were given safety instructions and, most importantly, got to pester Dave (the creator of the course) with questions.

Today was the first day of testing at the TRANSDEC facility. We arrived bright and early to qualify and get some data for our vision algorithms.

We did some balancing in the small test pool, adding some buoyant foam that we removed for shipping.

We were able to have three test runs in the main pool. After a couple of tethered test runs...

we were able to pass through the gate on our first autonomous run!

The rest of the day we tested the functions for the torpedoes task, namely the torpedo launchers and the vision for finding the targets. Tonight we'll be testing in the hotel pool, and tomorrow we'll see if we can complete some tasks. 

Robosub Day Zero

The team has safely arrived in San Deigo!

Two of our members, Chris and Josh, were at a NASA competition in Texas this past week, so they went directly to California a couple days early. They were able to do some sightseeing while they waited for the rest of us to arrive.

Josh at the Maritime Museum of San Diego

The rest of us arrived today; our flight went well, except our landing was delayed because of some pelicans standing on the runway.
We're staying at the Kona Kai this year, the official hotel for the RoboSub competition. Its on Shelter Island, right on the bay and close to Point Loma, where the competition is held.
We'll upload some pictures soon; we're having some trouble with the internet right now.
UPDATE: We got the images working, so be sure to check back every day for pictures!

New website is up!

Check out our shiny new website, just in time for Robosub 2013! A special thanks to Justin Kanga for designing the site theme, Andrew Rogers-Schatz for developing the front-end, and Nick Limparis for setting up our new server and back-end.

In the next few days we'll be updating our information pages and posting about what we've been working on recently. Also be sure to check up on us during Robosub -- we'll do our best to update each day of the competition.

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