Australian team takes top Amazon robotics prize

An Australian robotics team has taken the top prize in the 2017 Amazon Robotics Challenge
Australian Centre for Robotic Vision from Australia succeeded in the Grand Championship Combined Task to win the overall challenge and the top prize of US$80,000 ($99,850), with Nanyang Technological University of Singapore taking the pick task and the US MIT Princeton team, winning the stow task.
“This year’s finalists demonstrated sophisticated solutions combining object recognition, pose recognition, grasp planning, compliant manipulation, motion planning, task planning, task execution, and error detection and recovery to successfully pick and stow unique items,” Amazon said in a statement. “Teams were judged based on how many items were successfully picked and stowed by their robots in a fixed amount of time.”
Joey Durham, Contest Chairperson and Manager of Research and Advanced Development for Amazon Robotics, added, “This year, we made some changes to the Challenge to make it even more difficult and to encourage broader participation from multiple robotics fields – and the response was exciting.
“The versatility of recognition capabilities in an unstructured environment and the dexterity of grasping mechanisms was truly impressive.
“What we’re most proud of with the Amazon Robotics Challenge is its celebration of robotic community and the venue it’s created to share and promote research in a fun and rewarding way.”
The Australian Centre for Robotic Vision team consisted of researchers, early PhD candidates and undergraduate students who combined computer vision, machine learning and a variety of robotic hardware to successfully complete both pick and stow tasks the fastest.

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