A friendly competition in preparation for the RoboCup@Home

Last week, we hosted a friendly competition for the first time in the rooms of the new Robotics Apartment at our Institute for Artificial Intelligence (IAI): The SutuRoboCup pitted the University of Bielefeld's TIAGo (PAL robotics) robot against the IAI's HSR ( Human Support Robot - Toyota) robot in a friendly head-to-head match in preparation for the RoboCup@Home competition in July.

Looking back at the SutuRoboCup

The SutuRoboCup is an outgrowth of the SUTURO student project, which computer science students at the University of Bremen can take as part of their Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. The three-day event, a mock-up of the World Cup, gave the teams from Bielefeld and Bremen the opportunity to test their robots under competitive conditions, to get to know each other and exchange ideas.

The University of Bielefeld's TIAGo robot competed against the IAI's HSR robot in four challenges within the Houshold Robotics (“at home”) category: Cleaning the table, Serving breakfast, Storing groceries and General Purpose Service Robotics (GPSR).

Both teams followed different approaches. The Bremen team focused on one challenge, whereas the Bielefeld team tried to solve several challenges at the same time and came up with a good approach for most of them.

The HSR robot from Bremen emerged as the winner of the SutuRoboCup after scoring points in the “serving breakfast” challenge, in which the robot managed to pick two items from two different shelfs and place them on the breakfast table. However, both robots only partially completed most of the challenges in the competition, since both teams have just started their work. This made for some entertaining scenes and was also eagerly commented on in the livestream accompanying the event. Examples of these entertaining moments, which occurred at many points, included the HSR robot moving towards the window to grab objects reflected in its glass, or the TIAGo robot repeatedly announcing its entry into a room with a spoken “knock knock”.

All in all, the students were able to develop a good idea of the real RoboCup and how difficult it is for the robots to have to find their way around in a new environment. Besides the honour of winning, the teams were also able to win trophies, with which both sides walked out of the SutuRoboCup at the end of the three days. The general playful spirit with which the two teams met is to remain with them: later, at the real RoboCup, HSR and Tiago will compete in different leagues and not be direct competitors.

Prof. Dr. hc. Michael Beetz PhD
Head of Institute

Contact via
Andrea Cowley
assistant to Prof. Beetz

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