I work with several world-renowned roboticists in organizing the Robotic Grasping and Manipulation Competition at IROS 2016 (Oct. 10-12, 2016) in Daejeon, South Korea.
The research in the the field of robotic grasping and manipulation has made tremendous progress recently. At ICRA 2015, Amazon organized the first Amazon Picking Challenge. The challenge generated a great wave of interests. Thirty-one teams participated in the challenge. The event strengthened the ties between the industrial and academic robotic communities and advanced the understanding and technique of the robotic pick-and-place in unstructured environment. This year, we build on the success and organize the competition that is beyond pick-and-place tasks. After grasping, the robots are requested to accomplish a set of manipulation tasks. The capability to manipulate tools to perform physical interactive tasks is essential to bringing robots into our daily-living life.
The competition has two tracks and two stages for each track.
Track 1: Hand-in-hand grasping
In this track, the competing robotic hand can be either directed operated by a human operator or teleoperated. The human operator using the robotic hand to perform grasping and manipulation on a number of objects.
Track 2: Fully autonomous
In this track, a complete robotic system should be used. All grasping and manipulation tasks are performed autonomous without any human inputs.
Both tracks have the same two stages:
Stage 1: Pick-and-place. Objects are randomly placed in a bin. The goal is to pick the objects up and place them at predefined spots on a table one by one. Each successful pick-and-place gains one point.
Stage 2: Manipulation. Tools are randomly place in a bin. The goal is to pick the right tools and accomplish ten manipulation tasks. Successfully completing a task gains one point.
Many of the objects in the competition are from BYC object sets and the CAD models are available at http://ycb-benchmarks.opensourcerobots.org. The rest thirty percent of objects and their CAD models will be given to the teams one hour before the competition starts.
Some of the tools and their CAD models in the competition are given one month before the competition. The rest will be given to the teams one day before the competition.
IROS has promised a number of travel awards and prizes.
Teams from academia and industry are all welcome. We especially encourage startup companies to participate. The competition webpage is at http://rhgm.org/activities/competition_iros2016/ .