[robotics-worldwide] JFR Special Issue on the DARPA Robotics Challenge

Karl Iagnemma kdi at MIT.EDU
Thu Jun 20 15:58:57 PDT 2013


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ANNOUNCEMENT OF SPECIAL ISSUE ON THE DARPA ROBOTICS CHALLENGE
Journal of Field Robotics (JFR)

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INTRODUCTION
The DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) is a world-wide contest focused on 
the design and semi-autonomous control of highly dexterous humanoid 
robots operating in austere, unstructured environments. The DRC tasks 
teams with designing robotic hardware and/or control software to enable 
robots to complete challenging, practical tasks such as walking on 
uneven terrain, entering and driving a passenger vehicle, climbing a 
ladder, opening doors, breaking through barriers, and more. The DRC aims 
to spark a significant growth in the technical capabilities of 
humanoids, particularly for application to humanitarian, disaster relief 
and related operations. More information about the DRC, including a list 
of current competitors, is located at 
http://www.theroboticschallenge.org/ .

The DRC is similar in spirit to the previous DARPA Grand and Urban 
Challenge autonomous vehicle races, which received world-wide attention 
and sparked major R&D investment in the area of “self-driving cars,” a 
topic with broad commercial and societal implications.

The DRC is structured in three stages: an initial simulation-based 
“virtual challenge,” held in June, 2013, followed by the DARPA Robotics 
Challenge Trials in December, 2013, and concluding with the DARPA 
Robotics Challenge Finals in December, 2014.


AIM OF SPECIAL ISSUE
This special issue aims to serve as a scientific repository of 
developments by DRC competitors, describing their innovative 
developments in hardware and software design and development. 
Contributors are encouraged to broadly describe their approaches to 
competing in the DRC, including description of field testing and contest 
results, and analysis of lessons learned. While treatment of detailed 
topics is also welcome (e.g. design of a novel mechanism, or control 
algorithm), all contributions should include experimental results 
derived from practical implementations.

* Note that this special issue will focus on reports from the DRC Trials 
(to be held in December, 2013). A future special issue will focus on 
results from the DRC Finals (to be held in December, 2014). *

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:
- System architectures (both hardware and software)
- Detailed hardware design solutions
- Supervisory control architectures and algorithms for guiding high-DOF 
systems
- Feedback control methods for mobility over uneven terrain, grasping, 
and manipulation
- Low-bandwidth communication methods
- Novel robotic sensory approaches, and methods for providing sensory 
feedback to the human operator
- Human factors considerations, and operator interface design approaches
- Ethical considerations and implications of robotics for disaster relief
- Experimental testing methodologies, and analysis of results from field 
trials


SPECIAL CONTRIBUTORS
This special issue will feature a foreword by DARPA Program Manager and 
DRC Director, Dr. Gill Pratt, along with commentary from outside experts 
including Dr. Robin Murphy, director of the Center for Robot-Assisted 
Search and Rescue at Texas A&M University, and Dr. Yoshihiko Nakamura, 
Professor at the University of Tokyo.


IMPORTANT DATES
- June, 2013 -- DARPA Virtual Robotics Challenge
- December, 2013 -- DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials
* December, 2013 -- Paper submission opening
* March 1, 2014 -- Paper submission deadline
- May 1, 2014 -- Notification of review results
- July 1, 2014 -- Final manuscript deadline
- September 1, 2014 -- Target publication date


SPECIAL ISSUE CO-EDITORS
- Karl Iagnemma, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA 
(corresponding co-editor: kdi at mit.edu)
- James Overholt, U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, USA
- Yoshihiko Nakamura, University of Tokyo, Japan

JOURNAL OF FIELD ROBOTICS EDITOR
- Sanjiv Singh, Carnegie Mellon University


For further information about the aims and scope of the JFR, see: 
http://www.journalfieldrobotics.org/Home.html

-- 

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Karl Iagnemma, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator, Robotic Mobility Group
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Ave., Room 35-237a
Cambridge, MA 02139 USA
tel: (617) 452-3262 fax: (617) 253-1556
email: kdi at mit.edu
http://web.mit.edu/mobility
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