Straithe // B.Postnikoff

Robot Skiing

Description

The goal of this project was to enable a humanoid robot to alpine/downhill ski. First we started with cross-country skiing in order to see how the robot behaved when navigating across different types of snow. We followed this by equipping the robot to downhill ski without falling over, steer while skiing, and navigate a simple obstacle course while moving down a snowy hill. Our methods proved successful (see the videos below), and we submitted our skiing robot to the Humanoid Application Challenge at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Seattle, which we attended May of 2015.

To prepare for the Humanoid Application Challenge we made roller skis since large snowy hills in Seattle during May aren’t usually a thing, especially in a conference center. The roller skis worked well and we walked away with first place in the competition.

This project was done with Chris Iverach-Brereton during my undergraduate degree. For more details of this project, please read Chris’s website.

Outcomes

(PAPER) Iverach-Brereton, Chris, Brittany Postnikoff, Jacky Baltes, and Amirhossein Hosseinmemar. “Active Balancing and Turning for Alpine Skiing Robots.” In The Knowledge Engineering Review, 32. 2017.

(PAPER) Iverach-Brereton, Chris, Jacky Baltes, Brittany Postnikoff, Diana Carrier, and John Anderson. “Fuzzy Logic Control of a Humanoid Robot on Unstable Terrain.” In Robot Soccer World Cup. Springer. 2015.

(AWARD) First place in the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation Humanoid Application Challenge.

Selected Media Coverage

(ARTICLE) CBC News: “Canada’s cutest hockey-playing robot learns how to ski”.

(ARTICLE) CTV News: “Jennifer, a hockey-playing robot, learns to ski”.

(ARTICLE) CNET: “Humanoid robot Jennifer hits the slopes”.

(ARTICLE) Motherboard: “Jennifer the Humanoid Robot Learns How to Ski”.

(ARTICLE) Gizmodo: “Oh Great, The Robots Can Ski Now”.

Duration

January 2015 to July 2015.

© Straithe // B.Postnikoff.