College of Computing Professor Brings Robots Center Stage at Georgia Tech

April 12, 2006

ATLANTA (April 13, 2006) — College of Computing (CoC) Associate Professor Tucker Balch is chair as Georgia Tech hosts the 2006 KUKA RoboCup U.S. Open on April 20-23. The public is invited to see innovative and unusual search and rescue robots, the four-legged dog robots playing soccer, and the fast-moving small-size robots at this year’s event. Robotic teams from top universities in the United States, Germany, Mexico, and Canada will compete for the coveted championship title including Georgia Tech, Harvard, MIT, Colorado State, Carnegie Mellon, and more.

In addition to bringing RoboCup to Georgia Tech, Tucker Balch was instrumental in establishing the College of Computing's unprecedented Robotics Doctoral Program. CoC has further solidified its position as a national academic leader in robotics with the recent appointment of international expert Dr. Henrik Christensen as KUKA Chair of Robotics. Christensen’s position is endowed by a $1.5 million grant from KUKA Robotics, the North American subsidiary of KUKA Roboter GmbH and a global leader in robot manufacturing.

KUKA and Lockheed Martin are U.S Open sponsors of RoboCup, an international project designed to promote research in artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, computational perception and related fields. The goal is to foster AI and intelligent robotics research by providing a set of standard problems where a wide range of technologies, including perception, planning, cooperation, and action must be integrated and examined.

2006 KUKA RoboCup Schedule:
April 20 – venue opens for the teams at 12 noon
April 21 - competition begins 8:30AM - 6PM
April 22 – round-robin competitions and quarter finals from 8:30AM – 5PM
April 23 – semi-finals and finals 8:30AM – Noon; finals 1PM – 4PM

For more details about this year's RoboCup including participants and updated schedule, click here.

About KUKA Robotics
KUKA Robotics Corporation, with its parent company KUKA Roboter GmbH, Augsburg, Germany, is one of the world's leading manufacturers of industrial robots, with an annual production volume approaching 10,000 units, and an installed base of over 60,000 units.  The company’s 5 and 6 axis robots range from 3kg to 570kg payloads, and 635mm to 3700mm reach, all controlled from a common PC based controller platform. KUKA robots are utilized in a diverse range of industries including the appliance, automotive, aerospace, consumer goods, logistics, food, pharmaceutical, medical, foundry and plastics industries. KUKA robots are found in a multitude of applications including: material handling, machine loading, assembly, packaging, palletizing, welding, bending, joining, and surface finishing.