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Oct. 25, 2012 10:30 am

Drexel to build a robot that can respond to a radioactive disaster

Think of it as Robot Ninja Warrior -- with Philly ready to throw down. Drexel University will lead a ten-school team in the international challenge run by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)

Updated 10/25/12 12:05 p.m. to add a link to Drexel's Hubo website.

Here’s the challenge: you’ve got 15 months to build a robot that can respond to a radioactive disaster. It has to be able to operate machinery, drive a vehicle and navigate through different environments.

To determine the winner, the robots will face off in a series of elimination competitions.

Think of it as Robot Ninja Warrior — with Philly ready to throw down. Drexel University will lead a ten-school team in the international challenge run by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), according to a release.

The Drexel-led team will compete against six other teams, composed of a mix of organizations from academia and the private sector. Each team received $3 million to develop the robot, with the potential for an additional $1 million, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. The winner gets $2 million, says Drexel spokesman Britt Faulstick.

Drexel’s Hubo robots will act as a platform for its teammates to build upon. The team, which Drexel professor Paul Oh put together, includes Columbia University, the University of Delaware, Georgia Institute of Technology, Indiana University, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Ohio State University, Purdue University, Swarthmore College and Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Learn more about Drexel’s vision for Hubo and disaster relief here. Here’s a little preview:

 

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Juliana Reyes

Juliana Reyes began as lead reporter at Technically Philly in July 2012. Previously, she was a city services beat reporter for the Philadelphia Daily News, as part of a project called “It’s Our Money.” She is learning to drive, learning to bike (in the city) but is an expert at taking SEPTA. She grew up in North Jersey and Manila, Philippines but she left the tropics for Bryn Mawr College, where she majored in linguistics. She now lives in West Philly.

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