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ROBOTICS DEVELOPMENT PROJECT IN ARMENIA

Competitions/Minesweeper Robots 2015-2016/Competition Rules


1. The Challenge


1.1. The Challenge

The challenge is to find a number of buried mines in a garden like soft terrain area. The upper side of the mines is 1 to 3 cm deep under the surface of the field and is equipped with a trigger. The robots must search the area, find the mines and mark the location as well as generating an electronic map of searched area.
Coverage, detection, missing of mines and wrongfully triggering the mines are matters to be considered in scoring.

1.2. Definitions
1.2.1 Competition clock

The team is given a limited time period ‘Competition Time’ to enter the game field. Set up the robot and do the job. This period is whole the time the team has to represent itself in the competition day ‘Date A’.

1.2.2 Zero Reference Point (ZRP)

As the competition requires the teams to report the location of founded mines, a reference point as coordinate zero will be defined and assigned by jury. The robot must calculate all locations by referring to this point.

1.2.3 Segments (Pixels)

See section 2.1.7.

1.2.4 Electronic Map
See section 5.

1.3. Team Members

1.3.1. The competition has no age limits.

1.3.2. The team may consist of university students, graduates, professionals or any person with any level of education.

1.3.3. One of the team members will be assigned as team’s supervisor.

2. The Field

2.1. Field Specifications

2.1.1. The Field is a rectangular area of about 10 to 30 m. 2

2.1.2. The Field is flat and is filled with soil.

2.1.3. All measurements and dimensions have 10% tolerance.

2.1.4. The organizing committee will make every possible attempt to ensure the field is made precise and as perfect as possible, although there may be slight deviations in flatness. Competitors must be prepared to deal with these slight imperfections.

2.1.5. There is a 60 x 60 cm start grid at the corner of field near the zero reference point (ZRP). Start grid is considered ‘covered’ by default. There will be no mines in start grid.

2.1.6. There are side walls with 10~15 cm in height around the field. No specific color is assumed for these walls hence they may carry the sponsor’s logos.

2.1.7. The field is logically divided into 10 cm segments both horizontally and vertically. In other word whole field as a Cartesian area is quantized to 10 x 10 cm pixels or segments. As a result coordination resolution of the field is 10 cm. Every segment will be addressed by a unique combination of column and row (X,Y). Robot will use this address when creating electronic map indicating that the segment is scanned and is/isn’t clean.

Example for section 2.1.7.





2.1.8. There are maximum number of 2 cubes in the field sized 20x20x20 to 40x40x40 cm. These cubes will act as disturbing objects and will not contain metal parts. No specific color is assumed for these objects hence they may carry the sponsor’s logos.

2.2. Field Drawings




3. The Robot


3.1. Dimensions

3.1.1. The robot’s maximum dimensions are limited to 40 x 40 cm in length and width with no limitations in height at initial state. Robot must start the game considering these limits. Robot can extend itself to larger dimensions after start. Exceeding this limit will prevent the robot starting the game.

3.1.2. The robot can be consisted of multiple parts or can split to multiple parts during the game. In this case all parts and components must fit within the initial size limit.

3.1.3. There are no limitations for robot in respect to the way of moving. It can lay or stand in upright position, can move on wheels, roll, walk, jump, fly …

3.1.4. The robot’s weight including all parts and components is limited to 10Kg. In case robot is supplied or controlled from an outside source the connecting cables are excluded. Exceeding this limit will cost the robot negative points.

3.2. Control

3.2.1. The robot must be controlled autonomously with no human aid.

3.2.2. The controller can be embedded in the robot or being placed outside the playing ground

which is connected by wire or wirelessly.

3.2.3. The robot must be started manually by one of team members with the permission of jury.

3.2.4. If a wireless communication is used for controlling the robot, it should comply with one of free frequency bandwidths available at the place of contest. Any interference with other equipment or devices is out of jury and organizers responsibility.

3.3. Power Source

3.3.1. Robot must be powered by an embedded power source such as a battery fixed on the robot.

3.3.2. Robot cannot be powered by an external stationary supply using wires. Power source must be embedded in robot.

3.4. Construction

3.4.1. Any robot kit or building material may be used, as long as the robot fits the above specifications and as long as the design and construction are primarily the original work of the team.

 

4. Mines

4.1. Structure of the Mines

4.1.1. Mines are cylindrical shaped pieces with 10 cm in diameter and 5 cm in height. Top section of the mine is made of metal, making it discoverable by metal detectors. There will be a trigger (switch) on top of mine which is hardwired to the organizers monitoring system and will indicate the triggering status of mines.

4.1.2. Mines will be buried horizontally with the trigger up side and 1~3 cm deep from field surface.





4.2. The Way Mines Work

4.2.1. Every mine will be equipped with a trigger (switch) on top of it in a way that applying a not so slight downward force may trigger the switch to light up an indicator on the organizers monitoring system to inform that the mine has been exploded. This will cost the team negative points.

4.2.2. No deactivation job or process is provisioned. The goal of this contest is limited to finding and locating of mines by making marks on the field and generating electronic map.

4.2.3. Finding a mine does not mean that the mine is deactivated or safe and still robot must avoid passing over it.

4.3. Number of Mines

Number of the mines will be between 5 ~10.

4.4. Clearance

4.4.1. Minimum clearance between two mines is 50 cm.

4.4.2. Minimum clearance between mines and walls of the field is 20 cm.

4.4.3. Minimum clearance between mines and disturbing objects is 20 cm.

4.4.4. Minimum clearance between disturbing objects and walls of the field is 50 cm.

4.4.5. Minimum clearance between two disturbing objects is 50 cm.

4.4.6. There are no mines under the disturbing objects.

4.4.7. There are no mines in the start grid area. Minimum clearance between mines and thestart grid is zero.



5. The Electronic Map

5.1. Concept and Format

5.1.1. The electronic map is a text file (with .csv extension) that contains information about coverage and findings of robot. Each line will contain longitudinal and transversal location of scanned segment (pixel) plus its status as being clean or …

5.1.2. The file initially can be a blank text file. On every scanned segment (pixel) robot must add a line to the file. Format of each line is as follows:
#,X,Y,Status
Where:
‘X’ : An integer number.
Is longitudinal address of scanned segment.
‘Y’ : An integer number.
Is transversal address of scanned segment.
‘Status’ : 0,C,M
‘0’ if segment (pixel) is not scanned.
‘C’ if segment scanned and is clean.
‘M’ if segment scanned and there is a probability of mine existence.




Example for section 5.1.2.
1234567891012345610 cm10 cm
#,1,1,C
#,2,1,C
#,2,2,M
#,3,2,C
#,4,2,C
#,4,3,M
#,5,3,M
#,4,4,M
#,5,4,M
#,6,3,0
#,6,4,C
#,7,3,M
#,8,3,M
#,7,4,M
#,8,4,M
#,9,4,C
#,3,5,C
.
.
.
.


5.1.3. The status of any segment that its information is not available in the file is considered not scanned ‘0’.
5.1.4. If more than one entry found in the file for a segment, then the entry closer to the end of file will be considered valid.

5.2. Transferring Electronic Map

5.2.1. The electronic map’s file can be transferred from robots controller to organizers computer by a wired or wireless connections like Ethernet, WiFi, Bluetooth... or RS232 serial connection. Flash disk or standard memory cards can be used also.

5.2.2. Team must check availability of its file transfer method with organizer and perform tests before ‘Date A’.

5.2.3. File transfer failure means that team has not provided any electronic map.

6. Navigation

6.1. Visual Signs

Teams can place a maximum of 4 visual signs outside the field with maximum 2 meter clearance from walls of the field.

6.2. Beacon

Teams can place a maximum of 3 beacons outside the field with maximum 2 meter clearance from walls of the field. Type of beacons can be:
RF Transmitter
Light/IR Emitter,
Sound/Ultrasonic Beeper.
RF transmission should comply with one of free frequency bandwidths available at the place of contest. Any interference with other equipment or devices is out of jury and organizers responsibility.

6.3. Inertial Measurement

Robots can utilize mechanical and/or electronic accelerometers, gyros or compasses.

6.4. Other

Other type of sensors like optical encoders may be used.


7. Game Play

7.1. Pre-Game Setup

7.1.1. Organizers will make a reasonable effort to provide the teams’ access to the competition area starting from ‘Date B’ to one day before ‘Date A’.

7.1.2. On the day of competition each team has ‘Competition Time’ minutes. All the teams’ activities, preparations, starts, restarts, games, finishes and … should be done in this time limit.

7.1.3. Organizer may ask teams to place a printed sign on top of their robot. This will be needed by organizer to measure the robot’s scanned area by monitoring cameras in order to compare it with the electronic map generated by robot. The sign will be either rectangular or circular and no bigger than 10 x 10 cm. Teams must provision a place for this sign on top of robot.

 


7.2. Game Zone

7.2.1. An area around the field will be designated as the ‘game zone’. No one is allowed inside the game zone except for the robot handlers and the referee/jury.

7.3. Start of the game

7.3.1. One team member is elected as the robot handler. Only that team member is permitted to handle the robot during the game. All other team members must remain outside the game zone.

7.3.2. The robot is placed at the starting grid and checked by referee.

7.3.3. At the instruction of referee, the robot’s handler is to start the robot.

7.4. Restarts

7.4.1. A robot may restart the game as the handlers deem necessary within the competition period.

7.4.2. At any restart, the robot must be positioned back at the start grid and checked by the referee.

7.4.3. There is no limit to the number of restarts within the competition period.

7.4.4. On every restart all previously achieved points will reset to zero.

7.4.5. A robot must restart if:

- The robot is touched by a human.
- The robot moves off the field.
- The referee orders to restart.

7.5. Finish of the Game

7.5.1. Game is considered finished when the robot successfully scanned whole area.

7.5.2. Team’s handler can ask for game finish. Team will save points already achieved. No more moves and points allowed unless a new restart.

7.6. Flagging the Mines

7.6.1. Robot can drop or place a small coin size chip, flag or sign to indicate the location of mine.

7.6.2. Robot can spray visible ink on field to indicate the location of mine.

7.6.3. Maximum distance for flags or signs to be placed on field is 10 cm from mine.

7.6.4. Robot should not make any damage to the field or objects.


8. Scoring

8.1 Technical Points

There are 50 points as ‘Technical evaluation’ points which will be awarded by jury before the competition.
Integrity, mobility, simplicity, reliability, innovation, fail safe design and other technological solutions are matters to be considered.

8.2 Presentation Points

There are 30 points for a lecture to be presented by team members about their robot. By this presentation they will introduce their robot from overall design to specific matters and challenges in mechanical, electrical, mathematical and programming solutions they come across to during the development of the robot.

8.3 Pre-Competition Points

There are several meeting with jury/organizer’s technical support people before the competition for different development stages. The stages are for overall design and solution, mechanical, electronics, software and algorithm. Teams not participating at these meetings will lose the points associated with it. Every stage has 10 points.

8.4 Game Points

8.4.1. Every mine physically flagged correctly has 25 points.

8.4.2. Wrongfully making a physical flag has -5 points.

8.4.3. Every mine flagged correctly in electronic map has 25 points.

8.4.4. Every mine flagged wrongfully in electronic map has -5 points.

8.4.5. Each mine left in non covered area -10 points.

8.4.6. Each mine missed in covered area has -40 points.

8.4.7. Each mine exploded (triggered) has -40 points.

8.4.8. One point for every percent of field coverage. Full coverage has 100 points.

8.4.9. Correct electronic map. One point for every percent of coverage match. 100 points for %100 coverage match.

8.4.10. Getting back to start grid has 40 points.

8.4.11. Every 0.5Kg of robot’s extra weight will has -25 points.

9. Rules & Fouls

9.1. The robot violating any of the rules described below will be disqualified from the competition or forced to restart the robot from starting grid.

9.2. During qualification day ‘Date B’, if there is any violation, detected by the jury, can be fixed till the competition day ‘Date A’. The robots will be examined before the contest.

9.3. Any kind of touch by human which affects on robot direction or speed will cause a fault state and force the team to restart from the start grid.

9.4. If the robot is connected to a remote computer by a cable it/they should not affect on the robot behavior (speed or direction).


10. Code of Conduct

10.1. Fair Play

10.1.1. Robots that cause deliberate interference with other robots or damage to the field and/or objects will be disqualified.

10.1.2. Humans that cause deliberate interference with robots or damage to the field will be disqualified.

10.1.3. It is expected that the aim of all teams is to play a fair and clean game.

10.1.4. Jury’s decisions will override the rules described in this document. All participants must accept the decisions made by jury.

10.2. Behavior

10.2.1. Participants who misbehave may be asked to leave the competition area and risk being disqualified from the contest.

10.2.2. The rules will be enforced at the discretion of the referees, officials, and local law enforcement authorities.


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