Software Development
Robotics

IDENTIFIED: student proposal to use Penn robots as IED detectors wins Penn’s $5K Y-Prize

Imagine aerial robots that could detect improvised explosive devices (IEDs) hidden in roadways. That’s the idea that won Penn’s inaugural $5,000 Y-Prize, awarded to a student team that proposes the most innovative application for a Penn-developed technology. This year, the competition focused on robotics built in Penn’s General Robotics Automation Sensing and Perception (GRASP) laboratory. […]

Photo courtesy of Penn.
Photo courtesy of Penn.

The Y-Prize winning team.  Left to right: doctoral candidate Andy Wu and undergraduates Kelsey Duncombe-Smith and Richard Zhang. Photo courtesy of Penn.

Imagine aerial robots that could detect improvised explosive devices (IEDs) hidden in roadways.

That’s the idea that won Penn’s inaugural $5,000 Y-Prize, awarded to a student team that proposes the most innovative application for a Penn-developed technology. This year, the competition focused on robotics built in Penn’s General Robotics Automation Sensing and Perception (GRASP) laboratory. The grand prize also includes rights to commercialize the students’ idea.

The winning idea, developed by a team of two Penn undergraduates and one Wharton doctoral candidate that called themselves “IDENTIFIED,” involves equipping GRASP-Lab’s quadrotors (aerial robots) with “ground penetrating radar to identify IEDs,” according to the a release, “and a laser-based energy transmission system to extend their flight time.”

Companies: GRASP Laboratory / University of Pennsylvania

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