CSIRO aims to get money back to Australia at the Robot Olympics


The Australian robotics team will face the best robotics team in the world as they explore a series of underground courses built in a huge US cave.

CSIRO’s Digital Research Division Data61’s six autonomous robots will need to find and report on items and environmental conditions on three courses built within the Louisville Mega Cave in Kentucky.

“In the world of robotics, these challenges are like our Olympics,” said Navinda Kottege, CSIRO Group Leader.

As part of an underground challenge run by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, experts around the world have spent three years “pushing the limits of autonomous robot technology.”

“As far as we know, this is the first time the Australian team has made it to the finals of the DARPA Challenge and we are very proud to showcase Australia’s capabilities in this area on the world stage,” said Kottege. Told.

Teams are eliminated each year and only eight teams remain in the 2021 Grand Final.

Challenges include finding different conditions such as lost or injured humans, backpacks, or models representing phones, and gas pockets.

CSIRO’s Australian team members will attend the event through telepresence, with US-based representatives and partners Emesent and Georgia Institute of Technology on-site.

The breakthroughs discovered through the DARPA Challenge have previously driven advances in mining safety and efficiency, with potential for agriculture and manufacturing.

All robots are equipped with hardware designed and developed by CSIRO’s Data61. This includes integrated recognition technology for precision mapping, object detection, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi detection.

Winners will receive $ 2 million (A $ 2.7 million) for further research and development, $ 1 million in second place and $ 500,000 in third place.

CSIRO’s Data61 finished fourth in the previous challenge to secure its position in this Grand Final.

The DARPA Underground Challenge will be held from September 21st to 23rd.