Robosub 2016 – Jour 8 : La Demi-Finale

The day started rough after a short night preparing the mission for today’s second day of semi-finals.

We had a first test at 10h. We had issue with the DVL (a connector was not correctly in place) so we were only able to work on the pigner.

We were able to trade our 2 pm test for a test at 11h am. During that test, we managed to test the entire mission. This mission include device redundancy and fail case. We started with the buoy. The sonar did not find them, so the vision back-up kicked in, as expected. We hit the buoy as expected. After the buoy, we went for the fence. We were not able to find the pipe, so we moved back to our safe position and started approaching the fence with the sonar. It founded the wrong target, but the vision confirmation saw the torpedo board as a possible fence, preventing recovery. We were not able to pass the fence. The next step was the pinger, but the wrong mission started. We were however able to test the real mission quickly.

Now for the bad news. We had a lot of issue during the semi-finals. First, when going to the gate, the submarine saw the clean spot at the bottom as potential pipe. We tried some hack which enables up to reach the first pipe. The sonar was not able to find the buoys since we were too near for our algorithm. The submarine went to its contingency plan and prefered the wall for buoy detection. We brought it back when it was clear it was not recoverable. The last try aligned on clean spot on the ground and ended its alignement facing the wall. It was not recoverable. We did put a lot of hope in the vision, since it worked perfectly all the week, but we underestimated the fact we did not have a lot of test in the A side. Also, this week was a mix of sun and fog, so we did missed some data on very bright days.

A lot of teams did a lot of different task, so we don’t know if we’ll make the cut for the last chance tomorrow.

We’ll look for different option for tomorrow, be we are confident with our implementation and it was thouroughly tested in our simulator. We’ll simply adjust and add further test for tomorrow, hopping to use those in the last chance (and the final perhaps…)

All in all, the team keeps high morale, we’ll fight until the end.
(Update) We made the cut for the wildcard. We need to score at minimum 4000 points. With the current state of our submarine, it’s going to be tough. We’ll add unplanned obstacles and bet on our capacity to apply redundancy check with our different devices and add recovery points. There is a high amount of gambling here.