Jul 31, 2017

Amazon Robotics Challenge 2017 won by Australian budget bot

The bot was designed from scratch to take part in 2017's Amazon Robotics Challenge and used a radically different design to past winners. "The parts for the robot were cheap by the standards of typical industrial robots and it could be built for under 30,000 Australian dollars including its sensors," Prof Jonathan Roberts, robotics lab leader at Queensland University of Technology told the BBC. "But there were many thousands of hours of team effort that went into the design, testing and programming." Amazon already uses robots to move goods about its warehouses, but relies on humans to pick up and pack them. The robot contestants had to pick up specified products from a mix of items and place them in the kind of boxes that might be used for deliveries. The winning team believes its "Cartesian co-ordinate robot" design was better suited to the task than the arm-like designs of others.

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