The Aerial Robot, developed by students of BITS Pilani, Dubai Campus was placed first in the International Aerial Robotics Competition (IARC) held in North Dakota, United States. At the event the Aerial Robot successfully located an independent target marked as the office of the “Chief of Security”. This task was accomplished under 10 minutes without setting off laser barrier alarms.

The team from BITS Pilani, Dubai Campus comprised team leader Saurabh Ladha, Robin Singh, Aditya Jain, Deepan Kishore Kumar, Pavitra Bhalla, Anant Mithal, Anshul Upreti, and Prateek Joshi, who are currently students of second year of B.E. (Hons.) in Electronics and Communications, Mechanical and Computer Science.

The BITS team built the unique contraption with several propellers under the mentorship of R.K. Mittal, Director BITS Pilani, Dubai Campus. Students from 28 universities across the globe had developed prototypes of flying robots with artificial intelligence in this competition.

Mission

The IARC's mission is to design and develop an autonomous indoor flying vehicle that can navigate through an unknown indoor environment, strewn with obstacles, and search the area to locate and retrieve the target: a 100-gram object, the BITS officials said in a statement.

Team leader Saurabh Ladha, a final year student says, “it was a challenging endeavour as no human interference was allowed during the “mission” and the robot had to “think” and “decide” for itself. With the guidance of Dr. R.K. Mittal and application of skills in control systems, Artificial Intelligence and Image processing completed the operation successfully”.

The Team IFOR (Intelligent Flying Object Reconnaissance) is a project sponsored by Intel and the BITSAA International. With an autonomous nature, the Aerial Robot can navigate through any walled structure and avoid obstacles with absolutely no human interference.

R. Ravikanth Reddy