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Androids Advance Challenge: the UK's first humanoid robot championship! – University of Reading

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Androids Advance Challenge: the UK's first humanoid robot championship!

Release Date 28 June 2007

The UK's first humanoid robot tournament is to be held at the Science Museum in London on the July 4 2007 (09.00 press call, event ending 17.00).

Sixteen teams from secondary schools in London and the South East of England will compete with each other on the day by controlling their humanoid robots through a demanding assault course, and then watching their robots perform in a 'robot disco dance-off'!

The event will be a visual, fast and fun day, with robots needing to perform quickly to complete the challenges. Spectators can expect an entertaining and engaging tournament with humanoid robots navigating the varied environments, plus commentary and interviews with robotics experts from TV and academia, as well as other familiar faces from TV science shows, all of whom will be on-hand during the day.

Kevin Warwick, Professor of Cybernetics at Reading University, said: "Not more than 10 years ago, getting a robot to walk was thought to be a near impossibility. Now, to enable children to program and control humanoid robots themselves to do just that is wonderfully exciting – it is these children who will create the whole new world of the future.

"The long-term objective is to generate the interest of boys and girls in science and engineering in an innovative and exiting way. Here the participants get a fully hands-on understanding of what robots can achieve, as well as inspiration for what may be possible in the future!"

The event coincides with the launch of the live action robot movie 'Transformers' by Michael Bay, which is ideal for fostering interest in the science and engineering of robotics, and hence promoting UK research in this field.

The project is the result of a partnership between the University of Reading (event organisers), Young Engineers, MechRC and The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), and is funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

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Schools taking part are:

Greenacre School Kent

Sackville Community College West Sussex

City of Portsmouth Boys School Hampshire

Heathfield Community College East Sussex

Manhood Community College West Sussex

Kingston Grammar School Surrey

Langley Park School for Boys Kent

King Alfred's Sport and Community College Oxfordshire

Filsham Valley School East Sussex

Warriner School, Bloxham Oxfordshire

Springfield School, Drayton Hampshire

Merton College Surrey

Mulberry Girls School London

The Holt School Berkshire

Bearwood College, Winnersh Berkshire

Gladesmore Community School, Tottenham London

For more information, contact Dr. Jim Wyatt, University of Reading. Tel: 07798 572918, fax 0118 3788220, email him, or visit the University of Reading cybernetics website

For additional media information contact Catia Fernandes , telephone 0118 3787144 or visit the Androids Advance website

To schedule an interview with Prof. Kevin Warwick, please contact Carole Leppard on 0118 378 8218 or Catia Fernandes as above.

More about the University of Reading: We have an extensive track record of high profile public engagement in the field of science and engineering and dedicated support of youth engineering initiatives. Equally, the University of Reading has a long history of research in the fields of robotics, Artificial Intelligence and engineering.

The University of Reading is one of the foremost research-led universities in the UK. Founded in the nineteenth century and gaining a Royal Charter in 1926, we offer a wide range of programmes from the pure and applied sciences to languages, social sciences and fine art. New research and the latest thinking continually feed into undergraduate teaching, with our academic staff working at the forefront of their fields of expertise.

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