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Students win world championships in robot design with an autonomous polar boat

A group of engineering students from Aarhus University has won the world's biggest international robot design competition in Texas.

2019.06.04 | Kim Harel

The four Bachelor of Engineering students and their supervisor, Senior Professor of Engineering Claus Melvad (middle) at the award ceremony in Texas. (Photo: National Instruments)

With its autonomous polar boat, ARCAB, Aarhus University has secured a prestigious first place among 150 finalists in this year's world championships in robotic design.

Yesterday, they were presented with the People's Choice award at a glittering awards show in Texas.

The polar boat is designed for expeditions in icy seas. Among other things, it can measure water depth, salinity, marine growth and currents extremely accurately, so that researchers can develop better climate models.

 

READ MORE (in Danish) in the background article: Autonomous boat logs data from the Arctic Ocean

Watch the video clip from the presentation here.

Victorious students:

Alexander Fürsterling, Simon Sejer Pedersen, Mathias Skovby and Lasse Vesterled – all from the Bachelor of Engineering degree programme in Mechanical Engineering at Aarhus University School of Engineering are behind the design, construction and programming of ARCAB.

They developed the boat during a semester project for university climate researchers at the Arctic Research Centre, and their victory came as something of a surprise to them.

"Of course, we're thrilled. We hadn't expected to win at all. We're only students, and we've been competing with some of the world’s largest tech companies and elite universities. Of course, being recognised for something you’ve put so much effort into is great. But we're more pleased that we've been able to collaborate with climate researchers at AU, and that we've managed to help them learn more about the consequences of global warming," says Mathias, Bachelor of Engineering student at Aarhus University.

Read more about the Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

The Danish students beat international companies such as Samsung, Mazda, Volvo and Collins Aerospace in the Global Engineering Impact category.

Moreover, they won second place in this year's Student Design Competition for IT and engineering students from universities all over the world.

READ MORE about the competition sponsored by National Instruments here

Hattrick for Aarhus University

National Instruments, the many participating companies and universities, as well as the press are now all looking towards Aarhus.

With impressive rankings in 2019, this is third year in succession that Aarhus University School of Engineering has run away with a position in the global finals, and this has never happened before in the history of competition.

Read the article (in Danish): Students reap international glory for underwater robot

And what can we expect from the engineering students from Aarhus? This is one of the questions from the US media and National Geographic in the many interviews after the show.

Claus Melvad, senior professor of engineering at Aarhus University School of Engineering replied:

"We teach our students to apply their knowledge to real problems and create innovative solutions. We let them work with technology that makes a difference. We don’t let projects lie in dusty draws or just remain on the drawing board. In this case, for example, the autonomous boat has already completed a polar expedition and generated new knowledge about climate change. When students can see how important their work really is, they get tremendous motivation to be even better and make even more effort," he says.

In connection with the world championships, Aarhus University also received a special award: Excellence in Student Innovation.

Watch a video of the ARCAB autonomous polar boat on an expedition in the Arctic Ocean here: 

 

KONTAKT

Claus Melvad, ingeniørdocent, Ingeniørhøjskolen Aarhus Universitet

Lasse Vesterled, ingeniørstuderende, Ingeniørhøjskolen Aarhus Universitet lassevesterled@gmail.com

Alexander Fürsterling, Simon Sejer Pedersen, Mathias Skovby and Lasse Vesterled – all from the Bachelor of Engineering degree programme in Mechanical Engineering at Aarhus University School of Engineering are behind the design, construction and programming of ARCAB.

They developed the boat during a semester project for university climate researchers at the Arctic Research Centre, and their victory came as something of a surprise to them.

"Of course, we're thrilled. We hadn't expected to win at all. We're only students, and we've been competing with some of the world’s largest tech companies and elite universities. Of course, being recognised for something you’ve put so much effort into is great. But we're more pleased that we've been able to collaborate with climate researchers at AU, and that we've managed to help them learn more about the consequences of global warming," says Mathias, Bachelor of Engineering student at Aarhus University.

Read more about the Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering

The Danish students beat international companies such as Samsung, Mazda, Volvo and Collins Aerospace in the Global Engineering Impact category.

Moreover, they won second place in this year's Student Design Competition for IT and engineering students from universities all over the world.

READ MORE about the competition sponsored by National Instruments here

Hattrick for Aarhus University

National Instruments, the many participating companies and universities, as well as the press are now all looking towards Aarhus.

With impressive rankings in 2019, this is third year in succession that Aarhus University School of Engineering has run away with a position in the global finals, and this has never happened before in the history of competition.

Read the article (in Danish): Students reap international glory for underwater robot

And what can we expect from the engineering students from Aarhus? This is one of the questions from the US media and National Geographic in the many interviews after the show.

Claus Melvad, senior professor of engineering at Aarhus University School of Engineering replied:

"We teach our students to apply their knowledge to real problems and create innovative solutions. We let them work with technology that makes a difference. We don’t let projects lie in dusty draws or just remain on the drawing board. In this case, for example, the autonomous boat has already completed a polar expedition and generated new knowledge about climate change. When students can see how important their work really is, they get tremendous motivation to be even better and make even more effort," he says.

In connection with the world championships, Aarhus University also received a special award: Excellence in Student Innovation.

 

ASE