Fijian students from the University of the South Pacific (USP) took home the Tokyo Electron Award at the ABU Asia-Pacific Robot Contest (ABU Robocon) 2022, held in New Delhi, India.
The four students are in the School of Information, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Physics, with Arshaque Ali leading the team alongside Shahil Prasad, Salveen Deo and Shahil Kumar, together with Dr Sheikh Azid and Dr Sumesh Narayan as instructors.
The award was given to team USP as their shooter robot was able to complete the target at the first attempt, which was quite a challenge for other teams. USP had previously won pool games and also qualified up to the quarter-finals in the previous years and the University has been awarded for special categories previously as well.
Lecturer in Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Dr Sheikh Azid, said the team felt privileged to be honoured with this award on an international platform.
“I am very proud of my students and the team for their excellent display. It highlights the quality of students and robotics content in our Bachelor of Engineering programme is at an international level,” Azid said.
“We had very limited resources and funding available to build our robots for this competition. The majority of the parts were recycled from previous robots to prepare the robot for this year. Another challenge for us was the construction of the game field with the exact dimensions and specifications as required by the game rules. This also somehow hindered our performance as we didn’t have perfect game field conditions,” says Senior Lecturer from the Division of Mechanical Engineering, Dr Sumesh Narayan.
“However, with such major challenges and with the hard work and commitment of our students and dedicated team of technicians, we managed to successfully build the robot and perform at such a prestigious international platform winning at least one award for the University giving international recognition,” Narayan added.
ABU Robocon is an Asian-Oceanian college robot competition, founded in 2002 by Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union. In the competition, robots compete to complete a task within a set period of time. USP has been actively participating in the ABU Robocon Competition since its inception.