Icarus Technology & Davide Faconti (former CEO and technical project leader at Pal Robotics) has announced a call for participation for the recently announced DARPA challenge. Davide is already an accomplished roboticist having served as the main mechanical engineer and developer of the walking algorithms of the full-sized humanoids REEM-A and REEM-B. As we pointed out in our breakdown of the challenge objectives, REEM-B is one of the few humanoid robots in the world that can lift more than 5 kg (11 lbs).
He wants to form a European team to participate in Track A of the DARPA challenge, which will be funded to the tune of $4 million over the entire 27-month preparation period. Only the best teams will make it into track A, as those will have to create both the software and the hardware platform for the challenge. From the initiative’s website:
“…we believe that whoever eventually wins the Grand Challenge will make robotics history. We want to be those winners. We’re not in this competition just to “try,” and we’re definitely not in it just to use the budget from DARPA for basic research.
…we want to make all the deliverables open source, both in terms of software and hardware design. Not only do we want to build one of the best robots in the world, but we also want to make it available to everyone!”
Time is of the essence. As the deadline to submit proposals is the 31st of May, they would like to hear from interested individuals and institutions by the 13th of May. They are looking for talented mechanical and electronic engineers and software programmers, and anyone else who can make substantial contributions to the project. For more information, visit the call for participation website and contact Faconti [at] icarustechnology [dot] com.
- express your commitment to start working full-time in October 2012, should DARPA approve their candidacy for Track A
- describe your areas of expertise related to robotics and the way that it is applicable to the Grand Challenge
- write a short essay/abstract about the way that, in your opinion, one or more of the tasks of the Grand Challenge can be achieved. The purpose is to demonstrate that you are competent in your area of research and that you can contribute to improve the state-of-the-art
- if you are looking for an employment opportunity, please also include your CV and your personal achievement in robotics