RoboCup is the world’s most prestigious competition in robotics that has taken place annually since 1996. The team from ITMO’s Youth Robotics Lab and St. Petersburg Lyceum 239 (Dmitry Yakovlev, Dmitry Kovalko, Elina Knyazeva, Nikita Luskin, and Valery Rybin) became the best among those who participated in RoboCup’s finals for their first time (Best Novice Team). Traditionally, the OnStage league is split into two categories: novices and those who’ve already participated in RoboCup’s international finals.

The team led by their coach Igor Lositsky presented their project as part of the RoboCup Junior OnStage competition. This is one of the categories where robots have to put on a show: dance, sing, and play musical instruments.

The school students from St. Petersburg presented a robot named Robert Robotetsky. The robot played the song Sous le Ciel de Paris on a concertina while balancing on a swegway. Two eyeball-shaped robots supported its performance by dancing to the tune. Participants Dmitry and Elina also performed on stage with the robots, dressed as French mimes.

The size, mass, and technical design (the robot the size of a human being) make the project really unique. Earlier, the team also took first place at RoboCup Russia Open.

“The finals took place in an online format, for which we organized a livestream from our laboratory. We had to connect four times for performances and technical interviews. Obviously, the team strived to improve both the project and their performance for the finals. For example, they made it so that it’s now possible to control the way the robot turns with the help of an IR range-finder,” comments Igor Lositsky, head of ITMO’s Youth Robotics Lab. “During the second performance, the robot played two songs, Sous le Ciel de Paris and Blue Canary; in the future, we have plans to expand the number of songs it can play by uploading MIDI files.” 

Members of ITMO’s Youth Robotics Lab Evgeny Zavarin and Evgeny Lositsky also took part in training the team.