The goal is to build a system of 20 drones to find predetermined ships and transport some items from them to the land. The final, which will occur in Abu Dhabi in 2024, will be attended by 5 teams selected in the qualifiers from 50 robotics companies and universities worldwide.
“The Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge” (MBZIRC) is one of the world’s largest and most prestigious robotics competitions. Every two years, Abu Dhabi becomes a place where representatives of the best universities and international research centers participate in competitions to build autonomous flying robots and ground vehicles capable of performing specialized, complex tasks presented by the organizers.
In the ongoing edition of the competition, each team qualified for the final must design, build and program a system consisting of 20 uncrewed aerial vehicles (drones) to cooperate with the surface vessel. The task to be performed by the plan is to search the designated water area to find predetermined ships and take various items from them and transport them to land. The entire system must operate autonomously without human intervention. An additional difficulty is the lack of access to communication and satellite navigation.
At the turn of February and March 2022, the Nomagic Warsaw MIMotaurs team from University of Warsaw passed the first stage of the competition and qualified for the semi-finals. It lasted most of 2022 and ended with the organizers’ visit to Warsaw in October, during which the UW team presented prototypes of the elements of the final solution. Finally, to the stationary final, apart from MIMotaurs four other teams qualified: Fly Eagle (representing China and the United Arab Emirates), ROC (Denmark and Sweden), Team KAIST (South Korea), and UNIZG-FER (Croatia).
The MIMotaurs team has a year to build the system they designed and test its effectiveness in natural conditions. In February 2024, off the coast of Abu Dhabi, the finalists will present their solutions live, performing the competition task in a specially designated sea area. The best solution will be awarded a cash prize of $2M. The prize pool for the entire competition is $3.25M.
More information about the competition can be found here.