The European Robotics League (ERL) is a famous robot tournament that focuses on tasks that robots must do in real-world scenarios.
They have concentrated their efforts on advancing autonomous capabilities and seamless outdoor/indoor navigation for air and land robots since these are crucial milestones for emergency robotic systems.
This year's "ERL Emergency League Local Tournament" will be held in Poznan, Poland, from 20 to 25 June where air and ground robots will work together in both outdoor and interior environments.
Brac University's Dichari – a robotics team from the institute's school of engineering – is all set to participate in the latest edition of the tournament as the first Bangladeshi team, reads a press release.
The Advanced Centre for Aerospace Technologies (CATEC), the European Space Foundation (ESF), Poznan University of Technology, and the Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center are working together to complete this challenge funded by the European Union (EU).
Abdulla Hil Kafi (research associate, LaSSET, School of Engineering) is in the team as its advisor, while Md Khalilur Rhaman, PhD (associate professor, computer science and engineering, Brac University) will be playing the role of co-advisor.
Some of the members of this group are – Md Firoz Wadud (drone control), Shams Fardous Arnab (mechanical), Jahir Uddin (autonomous and AI), Sadikul Alim Toki (drone and rover vision), Mahbub Ul Haque (electronics), Muntasir Ahad (communication), Sihab Sahariar (rover control), Md Amanto Amin (management) and Tanzimul Alam (management).
Team Dichari has built a rover and a drone for the prestigious competition.
The rover has an arm supporting five degrees of freedom, which makes it flexible to reach any spot within a 1.5-metre range, and it can pick items of a maximum 2kg weight.
Besides, it can work autonomously and map its surroundings, which can be used to inspect any disaster zone further.
Meanwhile, the drone also comes with autonomous features as it can fly to any point mentioned through the flight controller, which is developed by the team itself.
It has also got several safety features, including a wireless kill switch mechanism to stop the drone at any moment.
The ERL committee chooses the teams in two steps. First, the teams must register, providing short information about the teammates and a brief idea of how they will implement their ideas for this competition.
Then, after the committee reviews those ideas and approves them, teams must provide extensive details about their drone and rover for the second stage qualification.
They must also provide a video of their whole system and structure. After that, only a few teams advance to the championship round.
Each team must complete two challenges with the rover and the drone.
These tasks include rescuing and delivering emergency kits to survivors stuck within the disaster zone and mapping the disaster zone with detailed information so that human rescuers can quickly assess the situation.
Both the rover and the drone can be controlled via a single interface while doing duties simultaneously, which is a unique characteristic of this technology.
Ahsan Bari (Aditto) contributed to this report