NL Student Teams Receive Grants from IEEE Canadian Foundation for Autonomous Vehicles Competitions
Published: May 3, 2022 by IEEE Newfoundland and Labrador Section
In their April AGM and Board meetings, the IEEE Canadian Foundation approved the awarding of three Special Grants, two of them to NL student groups aiming to participate in international competitions for Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs) and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).
The MUN Robosub AUV team is an engineering student group at Memorial University, comprised of engineering students designing a bio-inspired AUV to represent Memorial University in the RoboSub Competition. RoboSub is an international student competition by RoboNation, a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote hands-on educational experiences that empower students. The competition is held each summer at the U.S. Navy Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific’s TRANSDEC Anechoic pool in San Diego, California. Student teams design and build autonomous underwater vehicles that can identify and distinguish objects through machine learning, pick up objects, drop markers, monitor subsea structures, collect data and touch buoys under the water, thus mimicking those of real-world systems. The aim is to challenge students and advance the field of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV), which are widely used for underwater exploration, seafloor mapping, and sonar localization, amongst many others.
Phoenix Aerospace is an aerospce club run by Memorial University Students, with the goal of “creating a safe space that opens up new opportunities for students to explore the inner workings of UAVs and aerospace applications.” The team received the IEEE Canadian Foundation Special Grant to compete in the 2022 IEEE Autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) Competition. The goal of this year’s competition, named “Research Infrastructure for Real-Time Onboard Vision Enabled Robots” (Ri4rover), is to have “autonomous drones actively track one of several ground robots in a miniature city”.
According to their website, “[t]he IEEE Canadian Foundation awards “Special Grants” to an IEEE Student Branch, an IEEE Section, an IEEE Canada Committee, a non-IEEE entity such as a high school , or in rare cases an individual, all in Canada. Special Grants are intended to partially fund one-time new and innovative projects that advance IEEE’s core purpose to foster technological innovation and excellence to benefit humanity.”