The Southampton Sailing Robot Team has won the 2016 World Robotic Sailing Championship micro sailboat class, after entering for the first time. Held in Portugal, the competition challenges participants to design and build the ultimate autonomous sailing robot.
The Southampton team, comprised of nine computer science and engineering and electronic students, developed a one-metre long robot and programmed it to perform several tasks.
The team took second place in position keeping and area scanning, and first place in obstacle avoidance, to give them the overall first place position in the micro sailboat class.
Team leader Sophia Schillai said:
“It was a week that was equal parts challenging, exciting, excruciating and rewarding. We are very grateful to everyone who supported us, especially contributors to our crowdfunding campaign, the University Education Enhancement Fund and the organisers of the competition. We’ve learnt a tonne and will be coming back next year armed with more knowledge than ever.”
The team ranged from interns to undergraduate and PhD students, and they are now starting to prepare for next year’s competition. To keep up-to-date with their progress, follow their blog here: https://sailrobot.wordpress.com/