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Results and future plans

ARBot is the winner of Polish Robotour

This was almost the last Robotour (Poland/Łódź) , due to insufficient interest. At the end 9 registered teams arrived, 8 were on Saturday in the park and 7 bravely competed and explored Park Poniatowskiego. It was hard to believe that after the heavy rain on Friday Saturday would be beautiful for the whole day … and it was, so nice weather for 8th time!

Arrival and homologation

We had quite underestimated the length of the trip to Łódź, especially the last 135km. We drove that part for more than 3 hours! The surrounding reminded me suburbs of Hradec Králové: pedestrian crossings, mostly 50km/h speed limit, which for a couple meters changes to 70km/h, speed cameras, traffic lights, roads under construction … It took 8 hours in total to travel from Prague. We left at 7am so we did not make it on time and start homologation at 2pm as promised. Other teams had similar problems, except Radioklub Písek and AutoLUT which were impatiently waiting for us in the park.
Homologations were very benevolent this year. Proper examination was completed only for 5 teams. The rest arrived at night (Plecharts), or had problems with batteries (Roboauto), or "the usual" problems (Smelý Zajko), or unsolvable problems (Shevek). After agreement with other teams all non-homologated teams started at the end of the line.
The next time we will be more strict again, because due to the missing homologation of some teams I did not ask new questions:
  • Do you plan to return from goal to start position?
  • Do you plan to use whole 60 minutes limit?
The idea was to make sure that all teams know about slight changes of the rules. This missing knowledge showed later on in the case of Roboauto team.

0th run

  • Run0: lat=51.7548904 lon=19.4454715 (Road End)
The homologation was problematic, but the Saturday 0th run was total tragedy. The Polish team did not come, Shevek gave up the contest (the overnight repairs broke parts which were already working) etc. Team Radioklub Písek broke their suspension system in the first water sewer (they wanted to test it, but … broken robot and the contest did not even yet).
Only ARBot had show time — it reached the nearby goal, and at the end it tried to turn back and return to the start. Due to battery issues, the robot was stopped and returned to charger to be ready for official start at 10am.

1, 2, 3, 4

  • Run1: lat=51.7542988 lon=19.4433545 (Internal Semicircle)
  • Run2: lat=51.7522579 lon=19.4420459 (Eastern Parking Lot)
  • Run3: lat=51.7538014 lon=19.439095 (Island/Bridge)
  • Run4: lat=51.7541784 lon=19.4407237 (Maze)
The contest was very quick this year. Due to a misleading information in the print that the contest will be 10am-2pm we packed all runs and robots had to start every hour. It was more-or-less OK, only there was not enough time for battery charging. There were two exceptions: Radioklub Písek had diesel backup generator and Short Circuits Prague charged from portable truck battery.
There was another surprise at 9:30. We had learned that there would be marathon running through the park! I felt like Alice in the Wonderland. And really, in couple of minutes we saw first runners and shortly they crossed all four main roads. And again. The good news was that at the beginning of the first run at 10am they were all gone, so in reality we were lucky.
In the first run ARBot did not start, Roboauto did not come at all (a year „dusty” code still behaved strangely), on the other hand Radioklub Písek got some points and the same holds for the other robots too.
The second run was simpler and we were witnesses of a „miracle”. Roboauto reached the goal (408m air distance) and shortly after that also ARBot. Roboauto stopped but ARBot turned in the goal area and went back to the start. The robot got another 100 points/meters.
The third run was the most malicious one. The goal was on the small island connected by two small bridges. Again the best demonstration showed ARBot, until it ended near a bench with two diagonal wheels in the air. The remaining two wheels did not have enough power to move the body out of the trap. It is not surprising that ARBot complains every year about the full 5 litter beer barrel payload. The robot weights only 2.7kg so it carries double of its weight. I did not follow the ARBot after that manual intervention/task termination, but I heard that it was capable to cross the bridge and return back from the island.
The last run was along the cemetery to „Potter's maze”. Even bigger challenge was a very wide cross road, where Radioklub Písek missed the next entry. Then they tried to use parallel road and their robot E-liška cut the corner and ended on the lawn. ARBot also had bad luck: the robot wanted to avoid collision with a bench, but selected the wrong direction and left the road.


Order Team Run1 Run2 Run3 Run4 Total
1. ARBot 0 505 384 172 1061
2. Roboauto Quido 0 408 1 40 449
3. Radioklub Písek 72 14 71 195 352
4. Short Circuits Prague 46 100 4 14 164
5. Robo@FIT 30 5 0 0 35
6. AutoLUT 5 0 0 18 23
7. Smelý Zajko 0 8 0 0 8
8. Plecharts 0 0 0 0 0

Night ride

  • Run5: lat=51.7540905 lon=19.4374367 (Altan)
This year we lose leach of our fantasy and went to the park also in the evening. The start time was set to 19:15, i.e. after sunset. It was quite hard even for a human to tell where is the road. The crazy teams were ARBot, Short Circuits Prague, Radioklub Písek and Robo@FIT. The night run was not scored, but maybe next year we could have an extra price. It is an interesting challenge.

Planned changes to 2014

The three runs last year were not enough and four this year were maybe too much. On the way home we found a compromise, that the overall score would be taken only from the 3 best runs, and the team can decide to skip one run if necessary (without too big loose).
We will keep the video-homologation as must have, and registration without video will not be accepted next year. Moreover „recycling” of old video would be prohibited so that even experienced teams would dust off their robot a little bit sooner.
And the place for the event? It is open at the moment. There are several options like Padova/Italy, Brno/Czech Republic, Heidelberg/Germany …

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If you find this contest interesting and you would like to participate next year, or you have interesting pictures or videos, please let us know via contact form.