The euRathlon 2015 grand challenge: The first outdoor multi-domain search and rescue robotics competition— A Marine perspective

Gabriele Ferri, Fausto Ferreira, Vladimir Djapic, Yvan Petillot, Marta Palau Franco, Alan Winfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The euRathlon project was an FP7-funded Coordination and Support Action (2013–2015). Itsmain aim was to organize outdoor robotics competitions in realistic search and rescue response scenarios for cooperative land, sea, and air robots. Participant teams were requested to test the intelligence and autonomy of their robots in scenarios inspired by the 2011 Fukushima accident. In the project’s third year euRathlon culminated with the organization of the first outdoor multi-domain search and rescue robotics competition in the world: the euRathlon 2015 Grand Challenge. Sea, air, and land robots were asked to cooperate acting as a robotic intervention team in a scenario simulating an industrial area ravaged by a tsunami. The Grand Challenge was held in Piombino, Italy, in the surroundings of the Tor del Sale power plant, from September 17 to 25. To prepare the teams for the Grand Challenge, two competitions, dedicated to land and marine robots, respectively, took place in 2013 and 2014. In all the competitions, a strong effort was made in benchmarking what led tomeaningful and reasonable scoring principles.Workshops and educational activities complemented the competitions. In this paper, we will focus on the marine robotics competitions of euRathlon with a particular focus on the Grand Challenge. Both technical achievements and general results are presented. The results in terms of team participation and the fruitful effort in dissemination led to establish euRathlon Grand Challenge as the de facto leading search and rescue outdoor robotics competition in Europe.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-97
Number of pages17
JournalMarine Technology Society Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016


  • Benchmarking
  • Competitions
  • Field robotics
  • Marine robotics
  • Search and rescue

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Ocean Engineering


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