At the end of June, the world’s robotics elite squared off at the first virtual “RoboCup” – the Robot World Championships. hftm.team.solidus from Switzerland won the bronze medal in the “Logistics League”. Bystronic has been the team’s main sponsor since 2015. We congratulate them on their success!
hftm.team.solidus has been successfully competing in international robotics competitions for a number of years. The World Robotics Championships are subdivided into five main categories: football, rescue robots, industry, junior, and logistics.
hftm.team.solidus from the Swiss town of Biel ranks among the best teams in the Logistics League, winning the bronze medal this year. The team consists of seven students in their fourth full-time semester of systems engineering and mechanical engineering studies at the “Higher College of Technology” (hftm) in Biel. Unlike the other teams, the Swiss team is formed anew every year. This means that all the team members have to prepare for the competition from the ground up and cannot benefit from experience they gained during previous competitions.
This was the first time that the competitions from June 22 to 26 were held virtually. This year, each team – under the watchful eye of cameras – faced the various challenges on a 5 by 5 meter playing field. Their performance was evaluated by the jury via live stream. And for the first time, spectators were also able to follow the challenges live.
The preparation phase was turbulent and very short compared to previous years. In addition, the “RoboCup” was split up into individual challenges.
During the contest, alongside some setbacks and minor failures, hftm.team.solidus was able to achieve significant successes in the exploration, navigation, and grasping challenges. The difficulty of programming the robots in such a way that they can autonomously navigate around the playing field, position themselves, and independently “manufacture products”, i.e. accurately grip and manipulate items, is a challenge that none of the teams face on a daily basis. The Swiss team achieved 80 points, coming in behind Grips with 128 points (TU Graz, Austria) and the winner Carologistics with 691 points (RWTH Aachen, Germany), representing a solid performance – true to the team’s name.
Thanks to their 80-hour shift from Monday to Saturday, hftm.team.solidus was able to climb a steep learning curve. Apart from technical expertise, however, the stressful conditions also put the students’ social and methodological skills to the test. In addition to the bronze medal, the international competitive experience gained by the team is invaluable.
In just a few days, the students cranked out and accomplished more than they ever had in their periodic project-based engineering classes.
Alain Rohr, lecturer for systems engineering
At Bystronic, we are extremely proud and thrilled about the successful performance of hftm.team.solidus at the RoboCup 2021. We would like to take this opportunity to extend our warmest congratulations to all team members on their bronze medal. Bystronic has been hftm.team.solidus’ main sponsor since 2015.