DARPA SubT Challenge – CSIRO July 2019 update

July 30th, 2019

Our CSIRO Data61 SubT team continues to prepare for the DARPA Subterranean Challenge Tunnel Event in Pittsburgh, USA on the 15th August.

Two new additional vehicles, a BIA5 Titan and our proprietary Hexapod system, have been qualified for the event.

Video: CSIRO’s Data61 Titan & Bruce Hexapod robots have qualified to participate in the DARPA Subterranean Challenge Tunnel Event in Pittsburgh, USA in August 2019.

Several new capabilities have been added across our range of robots including: Tier 2 E-stops, ROCOS inter-agent communications & new perception algorithms.

Our communications solution is in development and currently utilises a chain of Wi-Fi nodes that will ultimately be deployed by the Titan to form a main communications trunk for use by our autonomous agents.

Agents connected to the communications trunk are now able to “detach” from communications and begin an autonomous “explore” mode where they map & process identified “frontiers” to be investigated.

Agents can return and re-connect to the communications trunk using their own localised mapping & pathing ability. This approach allows wide areas to be analysed without the need for a dedicated communications infrastructure everywhere.

Weekly test sessions simulating competition constraints and time pressures are being conducted in our 200m long tunnel environment. These sessions are proving to be an invaluable aid in getting the team used to the robot deployment process & testing their operation.

Titan in testing.

This research was developed with funding from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The views, opinions and/or findings expressed are those of the author and should not be interpreted as representing the official views or policies of the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government.

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