Competition Rules

edited September 2015 in Robotics
Rules for the 2016 Robotics Competition are now available. Click below to download. Please note, you must register and be logged in to access the download link.
2016 IEEE R5 Robotics Rules.pdf


  • If you are interested, please fill out the Intent to Compete form.
  • Are the rules finished and only available once we've completed an intent form, or are they still under construction?
  • The rules will be released soon. You don't have to fill out the Intent to Compete form to received the rules.
  • The Intent to Compete form for Robotics is to help the planners. Though it is not required to fill it out but highly recommended.
  • What size are the victims?
  • 2" sections of 1.5" diameter round dowel
  • In regards to the river, when the rules state that it can not be crossed does that mean it cannot be flown over.
  • edited September 2015
    You can fly over the river and/or any obstacle on the track. Just can't cross the boundary of the track. Please let us know if you intend to use a UAS robot by the end of November so that we can make any necessary revisions to clarify use of UAS.
  • Two questions. Are there walls around the perimeter of the off-road section as figure 1 suggests?
    How are the walls supported, i.e., how strong are they going to be?
  • Yes there are walls around the entire track as specified. We have them supported with dowel pegs. You could also use small L-brackets to support (probably a better option). They should be strong but defining "strong" is not something we are going to do here...if your robot bumps into it slightly it should be ok...if your robot bumps into "Team Ramrod" style that would not be good. Try not to bump into the walls please.
  • Is the winner the robot with the best score in any round or the best total score for all rounds combined?
  • Consider the three rounds as three chances to compete, your final score is the best of the three, whichever team had the best run wins.

    So best score in any round.
  • When is the last day to sign-up? I was going through the competition rules and it said March 31, 2015
  • It will be updated in the next revision of the rules but the deadline will be April 8 at midnight.

    In regards to an earlier post stating the deadline for notifying us of whether you plan on using a drone or not, it originally stated the wrong deadline of September, the actual deadline is the end of November (it has been edited).

    Keep in mind that this deadline is when you must have given us the notification of using a drone and a safety precaution for using drones must have been accepted. Meaning if you submit it by the deadline but no safety precaution was accepted, then if we decline the safety precaution you suggested, you would not be allowed to compete with a drone.
  • Do the rules mean that we can only use one robot in the competition or that we can use multiple robots? To clarify, we do understand that if we did use multiple robots they would have to fit inside the start zone.
  • If you use multiple robots then they'll all have to fit within the same 1 cubic foot box, as long as it meets that and the other requirements you can use multiple robots. I would like to know more details of what you are thinking of using to verify it is acceptable. Please send an email to the competition chair Ariel Muthyala mentioned in the forum Contact sub category of the Robotics forum.
  • To clarify the scoring (p. 9), is it correct that picking up the victim counts as the "physically touching the victim" required to receive points for navigating to the victim, i.e. the robot would not need to perform some separate touch before picking up the victim? I can see how the intention of the requirement might be that passing close to a victim without wanting to pick it up wouldn't count, whereas attempting but failing to pick it up counts partially, as in one of the scoring examples (p. 13).
  • You are correct, there's no extra step for it to be considered as having touched the victim. Picking up the victim counts as physically touching the victim.
  • edited October 2015
    We are planning to build a playing field soon. What are the lengths of the walls above each lane in the city section? These don't appear to be specified in the rules; visually, these are what I would estimate the dimensions to be:

    + +
    | |
    | |
    | 3ft? 1ft? |
    +--------------------------+ +--------+
    | |
    | o |
    | |
    | 2ft? |
    +--------------------------+ +-----------------+ +--------+
    |YYYYYYYY| |
    |YYYYYYYY| o |
    |YYYYYYYY| |
    |YYYYYYYY| 6ft? |
    +--------+ +-----------------------------------------------------+
    | |RRRRRRRR|
    | |RRRRRRRR|
    | |RRRRRRRR|
    | |RRRRRRRR|
    | +--------+

    (drawn using
  • I went to two different local Lowe's trying to find the red color paint that you have listed. I was told at both places that they can make a color that is close, but they do not have that specific paint number in their system. Is the part number for the red paint listed correctly? If so, where can I find it? Also, the rules state the floor is to be painted white. I do not see a specific white paint listed in the materials section. Clarification on these two colors of paint would be much appreciated. Also, the dimensions for all of the walls are not given. I will wait for a response to chrstphrchvz's question regarding that. Thank you.
  • chrstphrchvz:
    My apologies, I am currently traveling for work so can not verify those dimensions but they look correct. The picture of the track has everything to scale so if you used that to figure the dimensions out then you should be correct.

    For the white paint we used the base paint, Valspar HydroChroma Interior Matte Base C 49494. I can see how that was unclear. As for the red paint, we'll have to verify the part number, either myself or one of my committee members will have to do that. Sorry for the inconvenience but we'll work to get you an answer as soon as possible.
  • Lowes was able to identify the red paint. I had issues with the first trip to Lowe's. Second trip I showed them this and they had no problems.

    I was also told by Lowes that the "Base C" was tinted base, not white. I asked for the white equivalent white base for our floor. I had them mix the colored paint with the "Base C".

    Exact dimensions on the wall lengths would be nice.

  • Hello, we have a few more questions about the design of the robot. Are we allowed to use pre-built components (e.g., SBC)? Are we allowed to use open-source software? Are we allowed to use a web-cam?
  • We also have questions about the exact dimensions, are the part numbers specified in the rules the materials that will be used to build the competition boards?
  • Can multiple robots touch and carry victims simultaneously?
  • Why do the judges need competition robot code, BOM and prints for this? It has never been requested before this year. It seems to be unfair to allow the competition see all your code and drawings. This does not seem proper due to Intellectual property rights associated with the Students and the University.

    I have to ask, what is the purpose of this request? What is this being used for? What are they trying to prevent? I would think non-disclosure agreements in order.
  • If you have any questions or concerns, please post them under the Robotics Competition General Discussion page. Your questions will be answered as soon as possible.
  • I am using the camera on my robot, the lightning condition effects significantly to the results for detecting colors. Would you recommend the lightning condition that is similar to competition's location for testing?
    Do people (audiences and team members) allow to stay close to the competition board throughout the contest? If yes, what distance do they allow to stay?

  • If you have any questions or concerns, please post them under the Robotics Competition General Discussion page. Your questions will be answered as soon as possible.
  • Holmes4946, we cannot give you specific lighting conditions not can we tell you exactly how far people will stand from the track. We will have the competition area roped off to allow needed space for judges and competition team members to walk around. I can tell you that nobody will be allowed to cross the plane of the competition board boundaries during the round (unless it is an official or for a safety concern).

    The more adaptive your robot is to its environment the better the chances of success.
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