Underwater robot world championships: UST takes third place and two awards

Two local students stand out at Canadian tournament

UST kids celebrate after third place finish in underwater robot world championships

A University of Science and Technology team has won third place in the senior Explorer class at the MATE International ROV Contest in Canada, Professor Tim Woo said.  This is the best performance ever by a Hong Kong team, local schools and universities having been part of the competition in both senior and junior (Ranger) classes for the past 10 years.

Fifteen computer engineering students  operated an underwater robot of their own design in the Newfoundland tournament carrying out tasks set by judges: scientific experiments under ice, pipeline repair and oilfield work in heavy waves.

Professor Woo, who led the team, said two UST students were singled out for awards:

  • Rayan Armina was presented with the Marty Klein award for accomplishment in marine technology.
  • Johannes Jaeger won an award for most valuable person in engineering presentation in Explorer class.

The team as a whole also brought home the Sharkpedo award for innovation and originality.

Four other Hong Kong teams also competed in Newfoundland. Just 60 teams from out of more than 700 worldwide qualified for the finals. 12 of those did so at the recent IET/MATE Hong Kong Underwater Robot Challenge held in Tsuen Kwan O in April. The other Hong Kong teams also scored well, with a German Swiss International School student, Hugh Somerset, also winning an award for most valuable person in engineering presentation in Ranger class.

Dr Robin Bradbeer, a Hoi Ha resident who is a former professor of robotics at City U, and Asia/Pacific regional coordinator for the MATE ROV Contest, said that she hoped more Hong Kong teams would qualify in 2016. Hong Kong is now considered an area of expertise in underwater robotics by the sea technology community, with HKUST amongst the leaders in the technology.



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