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University in Detroit Lawrence Technological University Places Fifth in Auto-Nav Robotics Challenge


Detroit, MI -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/03/2012 -- For many college students, the idea of building and playing with robots as part of a school activity sounds like a dream come true. Add to that the prospect of winning a national robotics competition, money and, of course, bragging rights, and the notion becomes even more exciting.

Recently, a team of lucky students from one of the top engineering schools in Michigan got to do just that. And better yet, they won.

During the 20th annual Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition, a team of students from Lawrence Technological University took home fifth place in the Auto-Nav Challenge for their robot, vuLTUre2. Held June 8 – 11 at Oakland University, the competition played host to 47 teams from across the nation, with only 20 teams qualifying for the Auto-Nav Challenge, the competition’s main event.

Comprised of computer science, electrical engineering and mechanical engineering students, the Lawrence Technological University team scored a $2,000 prize for their fifth place win and also received a $1,000 prize for taking fourth in the Joint Architecture for Unmanned Systems (JAUS) competition.

While the majority of the other teams competing utilized a combination of laser scanners and computer vision to operate their robots, the team from the University in Detroit solely used computer stereo vision.

Lawrence Tech Professor CJ Chung, the team’s faculty adviser, said by using only computer stereo vision, the team was able to save money and energy. They were also able keep their robot and other competitors safe as lasers pose a potential health threat.

LTU software team leader, Ryan Matthews, who works full-time as a software engineer at Barracuda Networks, said the IGVC taught him a range of useful skills.

“Participating in IGVC has helped me the most in terms of preparing myself for a job,” said Matthews. “It poses a wide variety of challenges such as project management, problem solving, teamwork and time management.”

As one of the foremost private colleges Michigan, Lawrence Technological University continues to draw students from around the nation for its top-notch educational programs.

For more information on Lawrence Technological University, please visit http://www.ltu.edu

About Lawrence Technological University
Bloomberg Businessweek lists Lawrence Technological University among the nation’s top 20 percent of universities for return on undergraduate tuition investment, and highest in the Detroit metropolitan area. Lawrence Tech is also listed in the top tier of Midwestern universities by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review.

Students benefit from small class sizes and experienced faculty who provide a real world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 102-acre campus include more than 60 student clubs and organizations and a growing roster of NAIA varsity sports.