HKUST ROV Team Achieves its Best-ever Result in International Competition

HKUST ROV Team Achieves its Best-ever Result in International Competition

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High morale of ROV team in MATE International ROV Competition
High morale of ROV team in MATE International ROV Competition [Download Photo]

The Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Team, a sub-team of the Robotics Team of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) School of Engineering (SENG) shone in the MATE International ROV Competition, which was held in Washington, US on 20-22 June 2013. The team won the Champion in Technical Report and the Champion in Poster Display and was ranked No. 4 in the Explorer Class (University Level) out of a total of 24 explorer teams from the US, the UK, China, Egypt and Canada, achieving its best-ever result in the competition.

The amazing team is formed by 12 undergraduate students (1 from the SENG 4-Y program, 1 from Computer Engineering Program, 2 from Department of Computer Science and Engineering, 4 from Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering, 3 from Department of Mechanical Engineering, and 1 from Department of Physics). The students are supervised by Prof Tim Woo, Director of the Center for Global & Community Engagement (GCE) and Associate Professor of Engineering Education. This is the first time we have a joint team made up of Engineering School and Science School students, and the third consecutive time our ROV Team represented Hong Kong in the MATE International ROV Competition.

One of the main features of the ROV is the adjustable buoyancy system. This unique system was successfully developed in 2013 and allows the fine-tuning of the ROV buoyancy in a very short time. With the system, HKUST’s ROV can move in water freely and perform tasks required by the competition well. The principle is taking water inside the machine to act as weight to adjust the buoyancy of the whole ROV. This ensures high speed and reliability in accomplishing tasks and displays advantages over the competitors.

Heartfelt thanks go to DHL Express for providing logistics consultation and sponsoring the air express transportation of the underwater robot and to RS Components for sponsoring the electronic components and equipment. DHL Express has been sponsoring the robot’s airfreight transportation for three consecutive years. The global logistics leader’s professional support in shipping the sophisticated and delicate robot has ensured the safe and timely delivery of the robot between US and Hong Kong.

The ROV Team had earlier won the Champion Award in the Explorer Class in the IET/MATE Hong Kong Underwater Robot Challenge 2013, enabling them to represent Hong Kong to advance to the international contest in US. Held in April, the Hong Kong competition is the Asia regional contest of the MATE International ROV Competition. It attracted 9 university and 24 high school teams from eight Asian countries to compete in Explore Class (university level) and Ranger Class (high school level).

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