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SubT Urban Circuit

Robotika Team

The DARPA Subterranean Challenge Urban Circuit is the 2nd stage of two years project. The expected event date is February 2020. Update: 19/1/2020 — Urban Circuit Systems Team Call (25 days remaining)

11th October 2019 — Urban Circuit Team Qualification Waiver

Official announcement on community website

An updated Qualification Guide is coming soon, but we wanted to provide an update on the expected qualification deadlines for the upcoming Urban Circuit:
  • Systems Team Qualification: December 3, 2019
  • Virtual Team Qualification: January 3, 2020
New teams that are interested in participating in the SubT Challenge must first complete their Team Registration before submitting qualification materials:

Urban Circuit Team Qualification Waiver

(received by e-mail, On 10/10/2019 5:11 PM, SubTChallenge wrote:)
Tunnel Circuit Systems Teams,
We hope your fall is going well. This is a notice that your team has received a Team Qualification waiver for the Urban Circuit of the Systems Competition based on your successful participation at the Tunnel Circuit event.
However, please stay tuned for the upcoming release of an updated Qualification Guide. We do plan to release additional guidance related to team registration and requirements for qualifying new platforms.
We look forward to your continued participation in the SubT Challenge!
Sincerely, Elissa The SubT Challenge Team

9th November 2019 — Urban Circuit Environment Preview

13th November 2019 — Urban Circuit Site Announced

Info from community forum:
We are excited to announce that the DARPA Subterranean (SubT) Challenge Urban Circuit will take place Feb. 18-27, 2020, at Satsop Business Park west of Olympia, Washington.
DARPA is also excited to announce that new prizes of $500,000 for first place, $250,000 for second place, and $100,000 for third place will be awarded to top performers among self-funded teams.
In addition, we are announcing two new artifacts for the Urban Circuit. The new artifacts are gas and a vent. The gas artifact is a CO2-emitting device used to simulate a range of hazardous air quality conditions, such as a gas leak, poor ventilation, or fumes and smoke. Finding this artifact represents identifying areas that would be hazardous for personnel, including areas where breathing apparatus may be necessary. The vent artifact is a typical supply register commonly found in homes or work environments. Finding this artifact represents identifying potential areas with fresh air or an escape route to the surface.
p.s. if you do not know it, Washington state is on the west coast, far far away … map.

6th December 2019 — New Robotika Platforms

There are four new platforms developed by Robotika Team. They are planned for urban mission in Olympia in the middle of February 2020. What can we expect?


The already pre-qualified from Tunnel Circuit is small robot MOBOS:
There is a new (huge) light — actually it is not that big, but the robot is relatively small/3D printed. Also beside RealSense RGB-D camera there is Intel Tracking Camera — we are really curious how well it will work.

Tank Maria

Maria is based on commercially available threaded platform. It is also small, comparable to MOBOS. It is planned to overcome small obstacles and enter narrow passages. It should be able to handle stairs (work in progress).

Kloubák K3

The next step in Kloubák Division is K3 — 6 wheeled robots with two flexible joins. It is primarily designed to handle complex terrain. The platform moved for the first time 3 days ago (see video recorded in university corridors).

Drone Hermína

Finally there is ongoing development of drone Hermína, which should be equipped with the same sensor as MOBOS and Maria: RGB-D and tracking camera.
The deadline for platform registration is January 17th, 2020. I hope that by that time we will post already some interesting videos.

7th January 2020 — Status 39 days to takeoff

It was probably not good idea to compete in both System and Virtual tracks. There is 23 days left to submit solution docker to Virtual Track, only 10 days for platform qualification and 39 days to takeoff from Prague. We are leaving on Saturday Feb 15, 2020 to Seattle and then we plan to drive to Olympia.
So what happened for the last month?! First of all we got a great present of 3 new laser range sensors from SICK, which are now mounted on new platform Kloubák K3. SICK, thanks a lot
There was a progress with Control Center development: LoRa (Long Range radio) is used for communication to send small status packets and commands. Today the robots also started to send localized and recognized artifacts via LoRa to control center … so there is a hope.
In meantime we also discussed Crisis backup plan and here are the points which came on my mind:
1) The robot has to recognize danger. If it does not it will die or hurt itself.
2) The robot has to be able to return home. If this fail we will not get any info what is inside and if it is safe to send more robots to the same area.
3) The robot has to be capable of some basic navigation skills: follow the wall, navigate into empty space, follow trajectory described by polyline.
4) The robot has to know its position in DARPA coordinate system. If it does not it is hard to correctly assign positions of, even manually, recognized artifacts.
5) The robot should be capable to recognize artifacts.
This is priority list where if all five points are satisfied then you are running fully automatic exploration. If not you can easily loose your robot. BTW there will be SIX SCORED RUNS with one Course Reset in the middle, so it is not good idea to break the robot or its sensors at the beginning.
Here is the schedule available only to registered participants:
Tuesday, February 18, 2020 0700 | Team Check-in 0800 | Team Orientation Team Move-in & Systems Check-out
Wednesday, February 19, 2020 Team Move-in & Systems Check-out
Thursday, February 20, 2020 Scored Runs Day 1
Friday, February 21, 2020 Scored Runs Day 2
Saturday, February 22, 2020 Scored Runs Day 3
Sunday, February 23, 2020 Course Reset
Monday, February 24, 2020 - Media Day Scored Runs Day 4
Tuesday, February 25, 2020 - Distinguished Visitor (DV) Day Scored Runs Day 5
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 Scored Runs Day 6
Thursday, February 27, 2020 Awards Ceremony & Technical Interchange Meeting

21st January 2020 — Urban Circuit Systems Team Call (25 days remaining)

We are running out of time. Fighting on both System and Virtual is quite demanding and deadlines are coming. The one for Platforms Qualification just passed 4 days ago. We submitted several videos of Kloubak K3, MOBOS and Maria with hope that it will be sufficient for acceptance. We decided to „park” drone Hermina — it was partially expected that this particular platform is too big step, but with combination of sick team member we should not spend more time on this. So now we are waiting for confirmation or rejection.
Last week, actually exactly a week ago, we had call with organizers regarding details for competition in Olympia (in less then one month). It is going to be interesting! When compared to Tunnel Circuit the start will be inside the building, probably couple floors above the ground (BTW I believe that there are also several floors underground).
Satsop is a huge Nuclear Power plant. There will be two courses (i.e. not 3 as I guessed sooner):
  • Alpha Course — L-shaped start with staircase on the right
  • Beta Course — large open space with entrance partially occluded by wall
We can expect several downdrops like empty elevator shaft, stairs and platforms. The good news, I think, is that there will be mostly protective barriers mostly for people. Remember Safety First! and this is America … and there will be DARPA people collecting the robots and preparing the course …
timeout — time to go to work …