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The University of Maryland team took third place in the first NASA Robo-Ops design competition. Seven schools built robots capable of traversing the "Rock Yard" at the Johnson Space Center and collecting samples (colored rocks). Each robot had to be controlled remotely from the home university. RH-EA1 (Remote Harvester - Earth Analog) did very well on the course, collecting three samples in the allotted time.

The University of Maryland did very well throughout the competition. Chris Carlsen and Steven Friedman did incredible work as the "away team", including replacing a broken linkage in the manipulator end effector with only 30 minutes to go to the start time to allow the robot to be fully functional on the course. The rest of the team in the Kim building did one a great job controlling the vehicle remotely, despite being challenged by insufficient communications bandwidth and camera resolution. Great thanks are also due to the grad students of the Space Systems Lab, who hosted the fabrication process and the ground control station, and provided useful advice throughout the process. The team has plans to participate again next year.

Related Articles:
NASA Robo-Ops Final Standings
It takes a swarm: These robots talk to each other, make decisions as a group
UMD Team's Autonomous Drone Takes 3rd in International Race
Hogan Administration Launches Work Group to Pursue MTI Recommendations for a Possible Autonomous Technology Center
Feathers Not Included
Maryland researchers awarded DARPA cooperative agreement to develop robotic swarm strategies
Derek Paley interviewed for WYPR's 'On the Record'
UMD Opens Outdoor Flight Laboratory to Advance Autonomy, Robotics
Intern Designs Payload Integration System for NASA
To the Stars: UMD Alumna to Be First African-American Crew Member on the International Space Station

May 27, 2011


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