Mobile Robotics – Robocup

Since 2008, the Mobile Robotics group at MCS lab has been working towards putting together a robotic soccer team to participate in the RoboCup Middle Size League competition. The challenge of this project is to build a group of 5 identical autonomous robots that exhibit intelligent collaborative behavior in order to play football soccer. For this purpose, the mechanical design of figure 1 was adopted. This design mainly consists of 3 independent omnidirectional wheels, assembled in such a way that allow holonomic motion. Wheels are located at each vertex of a triangle-structure and are propelled by high-power DC motors.




Fig. 1. Design concept for a holonomic robotic football player. Autonomous navigation is based on ultrasonic sensing. This system consists of a set of 5 ultrasonic sensors located around the robot’s structure. They provide information about static/dynamic obstacles placed in the robot’s near space. These sensors are mainly used to detect an opposite robot player approaching to block our robot’s motion. Performance of this system is shown in video 1. Ball detection is based on computer vision. An onboard color camera and a laptop computer find and track the ball in the football field so that the robot can approach and carry it to score. OpenCV algorithms ensure both ball detection and tracking. Performance of this system is shown in video 2.  Video 1: Ultrasonic sensing for obstacle detection.Watch full video on YouTube !Video 2: Ball detection and tracking using computer vision.Contact: Fabian Estrada, Federico González and Ramiro Velázquez