Page 2: Google’s Schaft humanoid robot wins DARPA Robotics Challenge

Dec. 27, 2013
The latest round of the DARPA Robotics Challenge, in which 16 teams’ robots competed in eight physical tasks related to real-life disaster response operations, has been completed. Google’s Schaft Robot won the competition handily, having scored 27 points overall.

The individual exercises were as follows:

  • Vehicle, in which the robots had to drive the vehicle through a course and get of the vehicle and travel, dismounted, out of the end zone.
  • Terrain, in which the robots had to traverse three terrain segments.
  • Ladder, in which the robots received points for how many steps they were able to take.
  • Debris, in which the robots had to remove 10 pieces of debris and travel through an open doorway.
  • Door, in which the robots had to enter a push door, enter a pull door, and enter a pull door with a weighted closer.
  • Wall, in which the robots used a cordless drill to cut a series of edges and remove pieces from the wall.
  • Valve, in which the robots had to close three valves in any order.
  • Hose, in which the robots needed to carry a hose past a series of points and attach it to a wye.

The final results of the Robotics Challenge, with the top eight moving on, are as follows:

  • Schaft: 27 points
  • IHMC Robotics: 20 points
  • Tartan Rescue CHIMP: 18 points
  • MIT: 16 points
  • RoboSimian: 14 points
  • Traclabs: 11 points
  • Wrecs: 11 points
  • Trooper: 9 points
  • THOR: 8 points
  • Vigir: 8 points
  • Kaist: 8 points
  • HKU: 3 points
  • DRC Hubo: 3 points
  • Chiron, NASA-JSC Valkyrie, Mojovation : 0 points

DARPA expects that, by the time of the finals, the robots will demonstration roughly the competence of a two-year-old child, giving them the ability to autonomously carry out commands such as "Clear the debris in front of you," or "Close the valve." While the robots will still need to be told by humans which tasks to complete, DARPA hopes that this demonstration will transform the field of robotics and launch the development of robots featuring task-level autonomy that can operate in the hazardous, degraded conditions common in disaster zones.

View more information on the DARPA Robotics Challenge.

Also check out:
Google and the robot revolution
DARPA Robotics Challenge trials to test robots in disaster response operations
(Slideshow) 10 innovative current and future robotic applications

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About the Author

James Carroll

Former VSD Editor James Carroll joined the team 2013.  Carroll covered machine vision and imaging from numerous angles, including application stories, industry news, market updates, and new products. In addition to writing and editing articles, Carroll managed the Innovators Awards program and webcasts.

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