UNIZG-FER Team on MBZIRC Competition...

The highly anticipated MBZIRC (Mohamed Bin Zayed International Robotics Challenge) grand finale has begun, igniting the spotlight on the UNIZG-FER team, which consists of members from the esteemed LARICS and LABUST laboratories. With unwavering dedication and relentless effort, they have been tirelessly gearing up for this momentous event, showcasing our institution with pride and determination. The team has been on-site for two weeks, intensively preparing for the ultimate challenge.  

This prestigious competition, renowned for its challenges, tests the mettle of participants in the realm of maritime and aerial surveillance. Dubbed as the "Great Maritime Challenge" in its third edition, MBZIRC aims to push technological boundaries, particularly in scenarios involving sea and air surveillance, encompassing two critical components: inspection and intervention. 

In these daunting tasks, a robotic team comprising autonomous vessels and several unmanned aerial vehicles must locate and identify designated ships while retrieving specified items of interest from them. The challenge is further compounded by the prohibition of using a global localization system, including GPS, adding an extra layer of complexity to the competition. 

Despite the formidable nature of the contest, our team stands tall among the top 5 competitors who have secured entry into this prestigious event. Their pursuit of the coveted $2 million prize reflects their commitment to excellence and innovation. 

The competition journey began in January 2021, with the first phase where out of 50 teams, only 14 advanced to the next stage. Subsequently, from 14 teams, the simulation phase narrowed down the competition to 9 teams. Judges then meticulously selected 5 teams out of the 9 for the grand final. The names of the teams competing alongside UNIZG-FER are Fly Eagle from China and UAE, Roc from Sweden and Denmark, Warsaw Mimotaurs from Poland, and Team Kaist from South Korea. 

As the competition unfolds, spanning until the beginning of February, the UNIZG-FER team remains resolute in their quest for victory, driven by a passion to push boundaries and redefine possibilities in the realm of robotics and technology. We stand behind them with unwavering support, proud to be represented by such a dedicated and capable team on this global stage. 

Author: Ana Fadljević
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