Canadian team selected for Amazon Picking Challenge

by MM&D Online Staff

Amazon’s Picking Challenge is nearing its conclusion, and the University of Alberta team has been selected to receive travel reimbursement to travel to the final event in May.

The first Amazon Picking Challenge will be held at ICRA 2015,┬áthe IEEE Robotics and Automation Society’s flagship conference. The goal is to strengthen the ties between the industrial and academic robotic communities and promote shared and open solutions to some of the big problems in unstructured automation. To this end the contest will be awarding travel grants to ICRA 2015, practice equipment, and a large prize pool for the competition winners (through Amazon, in additional to any other IEEE or ICRA grants).

Entrants are building their own robot hardware and software that can attempt simplified versions of the general task of picking items from shelves. The robots will be presented with a stationary, lightly populated Kiva inventory shelf and be asked to pick a subset of the products and put them on a table.

The challenge combines object recognition, pose recognition, grasp planning, compliant manipulation, motion planning, task planning, task execution, and error detection and recovery. The robots will be scored by how many items are picked in a fixed amount of time, with $26,000 in prizes being awarded. Participants will be encouraged to share and disseminate their approach to improve future challenge results and industrial implementations.

Technical details of the challenge can be found here.

ICRA is the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society’s flagship conference and is a premier international forum for robotics researchers to present their work. The 2015 conference will be held May 26-30, 2015 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle, Washington, USA.

See previous MM&D coverage on Kiva robotics.