The Challenge 2023

01. INTRODUCTION

The Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge (MBZIRC) is a biennial international robotics competition. MBZIRC provides an ambitious and technologically demanding set of challenges and is open to all teams from all countries. MBZIRC aims to inspire future robotics through innovation and technical excellence.

Robotics is poised to have a transformative impact in a variety of new markets and societal aspects. These include robot applications in healthcare, domestic tasks, transport, space, manufacturing, construction, and disaster response. However, there is a gap between current reality in robotic capabilities and the requirements of future applications. Enabling technologies for such applications include robots working more autonomously in dynamic, unstructured environments, while collaborating and interacting with other robots. MBZIRC aims to focus on some of these enabling technologies, by providing a demanding set of benchmark robotics challenges to attract the best international teams. Similar to other major competitions, MBZIRC aims to provide an environment that fosters innovation and technical excellence, while encouraging spectacular performance with robotics technology.

More information about MBZIRC can be found at http://www.mbzirc.com

The inaugural MBZIRC took place at the YAS Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, UAE, in March 2017. The second MBZIRC was held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center (ADNEC) in February 2020. These two events were landmark achievements, attracting a large number of top teams from 4 continents, competing in challenges designed to push the limits of real-world robotics. Building on this success we are now launching the third edition of MBZIRC scheduled for February 2023.

This document describes the preliminary version of the MBZIRC 2023 Challenges, the call for Intention to Participate and key dates. It is noted that this document provides only a broad overview of the MBZIRC 2023 Challenges; a more detailed version of the MBZIRC 2023 Challenges will be released with the main Call for Proposals in January 2021. Through this Call for Intention to Participate we are also soliciting feedback from the robotics community on the MBZIRC 2023 Challenges.

The MBZIRC Organizers reserves the right to continue to fine tune the MBZIRC 2023 Challenge Description and Rules, leading up to the competition in February 2023, based on feedback from the robotics community, MBZIRC participants, and the MBZIRC Technical Advisory Committee.

02. COMPETITION OVERVIEW

MBZIRC 2023 will be based on autonomous aerial and ground robots carrying out navigation and manipulation tasks, in unstructured, outdoor and indoor environments.

MBZIRC 2023 will consist of three challenges:

Challenge 1 - Agriculture Applications: Challenge 1 requires a team of UAVs and a UGV to perform a set of agriculture related tasks in an outdoor arena.

Challenge 2 – Marine Applications: Challenge 2 requires a team of UAVs to perform a set of marine application related tasks in an outdoor arena.

Challenge 3 - Hospital Applications: Challenge 3 requires a UGV to perform a set of hospital ward related tasks in an indoor arena.

MBZIRC 2023 will take place in outdoor and indoor environments. Challenges 1 and 2 will take place in open outdoor arenas, each approximately the size of a football pitch (100mx60m). Challenge 3 will take place in an indoor arena simulating a typical hospital ward.

The MBZIRC 2023 challenges are motivated by pushing technological and application boundaries in robotics. The technological challenges addressed in the competition are focused on autonomy in semi-structured, uncertain and complex, outdoor and indoor environments. Competitors may participate in one or more of the three challenges using untethered, autonomous robots. For safety reasons, the dimensions and speeds of the UAVs and the UGV will be constrained.

More details of the Challenges are given in Section 2 below. Detailed specifications for each challenge, including ‘Scoring Schemes’ and ‘Safety Protocols’, will be provided in the MBZIRC 2023 Call for Proposals, scheduled for January 2023.

03. CHALLENGES

3.1 - Challenge 1 – Agriculture Applications

Challenge 1 requires a team of UAVs and a UGV to autonomously perform a set of agriculture related tasks, in an outdoor arena of approximate dimensions 100mx60m.

Challenge 1 sub-tasks will include:

» Harvesting

  • UAVs and UGVs will collaborate to detect and harvest different crops autonomously. The crops may include soft fruits, vegetables, and/or dates.

» Precision Delivery

  • UAVs and UGVs will collaborate to precisely detect need and deliver crop management interventions, such as water, fertilizer, pesticide, and/or pollen.

Challenge 1 duration will be 20 minutes

3.2 - Challenge 2 – Marine Applications

Challenge 2 requires a team of UAVs to autonomously perform a set of marine related tasks. Challenge 2 will take place in an outdoor arena of approximate dimensions 100mx60m, where a part of the arena will be covered by a pool(s) of relatively shallow water.

Challenge 2 sub-tasks will include:

» Surface Capture

  • UAVs to detect, track and capture stationary and moving objects on the surface of the water. This may include water sampling from specified locations.

» Sub-Surface Capture

  • UAVs to detect, track and capture stationary and moving objects just below the surface of the water.

Challenge 2 duration will be 20 minutes

3.3 - Challenge 3 – Hospital Applications

Challenge 3 requires a UGV to autonomously perform a set of hospital ward related tasks in an indoor arena.

Challenge 3 sub-tasks will include:

» Bed Side Assistance

  • Change intravenous (IV) drips
  • Change bed linen

» Sterilization

  • Contact based cleaning of a specified set of surfaces

This challenge 3 duration will be 20 minutes.

04. PRIZES AND SPONSORSHIP

As in previous editions of MBZIRC, US$ 5 million will be allocated for prizes and team sponsorship.

05. CALL FOR INTENTION TO PARTICIPATE

Teams who intend to participate in MBZIRC 2023 are requested to register their interest by submitting an online application by visiting: www.mbzirc.com/apply.

The deadline for submitting the application is 1st December 2020.

The application form also provides teams the opportunity to give feedback on the MBZIRC 2023 Challenges outlined in this document.

06. IMPORTANT DATES

The following is a list of important dates and deadlines leading up to MBZIRC in February 2023.

MBZIRC 2023 KEY DATES
Call for Intent to Participate 01 November 2020
Call for Proposals 15 January 2021
Submission of Proposals 15 March 2021
Selection of Finalists 15 April 2021
MBZIRC 2023 February 2023
01 November 2020 Call for Intent to Participate
15 January 2021 Call for Proposals
15 March 2021 Submission of Proposals
15 April 2021 Selection of Finalists
February 2023 MBZIRC 2023

VERSION DATE DESCRIPTION
V1 25 Oct 2020 MBZIRC 2023 Preliminary Challenge Description Download
VERSION DATE DESCRIPTION
V1 25 Oct 2020 MBZIRC 2023 Preliminary Challenge Description
Download