Soccerbots: Robotic Football Exhibition

May 15th, 2012 § 9 comments § permalink

Our goal is build a robot football team that can play football (soccer) in a public space. The robots can be remote controlled by children and adults, as well as play autonomously by themselves.

We believe that this exhibition will draw tremendous media attention and foot traffic given the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship that will take place in June 2012. In addition, it will be the first robotic football exhibition in China where the audience can participate.

Two robotic teams with seven players will play on a special football field (table size or larger). Audience members will be able to remotely control the robots. The robots can also be automatically controlled, allowing the robots to play by themselves or against human players. Each robot will be designed to wear the jersey of the color of the participating teams in the European Football Championship.

We believe this exhibition will get coverage in local media, given the interest in European football, the uniqueness of the robots, and the audience participation.


XinCheJian is asking for 50,000 RMB from the main sponsor of the Soccerbots Exhibition. These costs are the minimum requirements to cover the basic materials, components, tools and support costs. Due to the extreme time constraints, half of the funds (25,000 RMB) must be provided before May 18th 2012. The overall engineering cost of the Soccerbots exhibition is estimated at well over 200,000 RMB when taking into account the cost of the expert engineering team donated by Xinchejian.

The exhibition will be on loan to a space designated by the sponsor for the duration of the event. Given the transportation costs, the sponsor will need to provide the field based on a design and set of specifications provided by XinCheJian.

XinCheJian will provide four robotic teams of seven players, remote controllers for the audience to play, the special football field sensors, the special game ball, and recharging units for the robots. All robots, playing field, remote controls, and equipment must be returned to XinCheJian at the end of the exhibition.

Soccerbots Swarm Robotics Team

XinCheJian has assembled a team of two senior engineers, Michaelis Lutz and Edward Jiang, with over 10 years of robotics experience. Assisting them to build the robots will be more than 10 part-time engineers and designers.

Project Lead Engineers:

Michaelis Lutz

Xinchejian Project Engineers:

Spencer Featherstone, Mika Lin, Valentin Gauffre, Raymond Walintukan, Tim Lan, Chong Yang, Robin Lee, Chris Carey, Infy Zhang

XinCheJian supporting team:

Ricky Ng-Adam and Kevin Chen (proposal), Otto Mao (translation)

Previously Built Robots:

Mr. Lutz and Mr. Jiang have built multiple robots at XinCheJian including:

  • “Insectbot” autonomous robots
  • Hacked RC car, turned into an autonomous robot
  • R2D2 autonomous robot
  • Micro-sized line-follower autonomous robot
  • Four-legged autonomous walking robot

View a list of projects and pictures here:

Parting words

At XinCheJian, we believe this would be a unique and attention-grabbing exhibition. This will be the first robotic football swarm game in China, which could draw interest from both traditional media and social media. Most important, we think the robots will attract lots of people who will come to watch the robots playing football!

Our organization has positive visibility in the local media including magazines and TV media, many online social networks (such as Weibo) and our own blog. Our sponsor can gain positive exposure by associating itself to this ambitious and attractive project.

We have a strong self-interest in seeing this project succeed and driving traffic to our sponsor to build an audience for the project and enhance our reputation as a creative and innovative space.

概念图Concept Proposals

Figure 1: Audience members watching the Soccerbots playing football.

Figure 2:  Proposed 3D model shell for the soccerbot robot exterior.

Figure 3: Concept of external skins for soccerbots, based on European Football teams.

Open Source General Purpose Software Radio Platform

December 3rd, 2011 § Comments Off on Open Source General Purpose Software Radio Platform § permalink

Shyu Lee from Meteroi came by the space and he wants to help with ARM/FPGA classes,  buying components, spare parts and providing some of his own hardware so members can experiment.

His big project at the moment is software radio with hardware-acceleration. The hardware component will have a USB and/or Ethernet interface to PC to be compatible with GNURadio. Another similar project, from Microsoft, is SORA. His innovation is to provide an higher performance hardware solution; while other solutions rely on computers for processing and ADC/DAC interface to do the data acquisition, he has everything done in hardware. He’s currently looking for a supportive university or other organization to support his work full-time for 3 to 5 years so he can focus on software integration and hardware improvements. You can read the proposal “An Open Source General Purpose Software Defined Radio Development Platform” (note that the project name will be changed because of trademark conflict).

He’s also really interested in space communication; one of his project is to bounce a radio signal off the moon. Radio communication with space will be very useful to communicate with our space robots as part of the 100YSS project.

He’ll be giving a class on ARM and FPGA at XinCheJian Saturday December 10th using his own development platform, DevStation 1000E. He will be leaving one development station for members interested in getting some practical skills after the introductory session at XinCheJian (Register Now!)

Received our GGHC soldering stations!

November 2nd, 2011 § 1 comment § permalink




We’ve just received our nine temperature controlled soldering station with digital display! Generously given by ELEMENT14 as participation prizes to for the spring 2011 Great Global Hackerspace Challenge competition.

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