The third competition in the Autonomous Robot for Gas and Oil Sites (ARGOS) Challenge begins on Monday, March 13. Calling on the talents of startups and academics worldwide, it seeks to create the first autonomous surface robot adapted to oil and gas sites in less than three years, thereby enhancing safety conditions for operators. Five teams – AIR-K, ARGONAUTS, FOXIRIS, LIO and VIKINGS – are going head-to-head in three major stages of decisive competitions. They are currently back at the Lacq site for round three.
Between March 13 and 17, the teams will be given five missions designed to test whether their robot is the most efficient, the most robust, the most advanced in terms of artificial intelligence (AI) and the most capable of safely operating on the Group's industrial sites.
- ATEX standard: the No. 1 priority
Compliance with the ATEX standard is the competition's most important requirement, and one of the main objectives of the ARGOS Challenge. The robots will be assessed by an ATEX expert to measure their ability to operate in potentially explosive atmospheres.
- Safe operations among people and equipment
The robot must adopt deterministic behavior and comply with safety rules regardless of internal or external events, such as anomalies at the control point, internal malfunctions, emergency stops, low battery or obstacles.
- Reliability under all circumstances
The robot must be capable of getting around autonomously and delivering reliable information and analyses.
- Autonomy, and more...
The robot must carry out rounds and perform one-off tasks autonomously. However, the operator must also be able to step in and switch to remote control mode at any time.
- Rock-solid design
The robot must be developed to a degree of maturity that enables it to operate in an impaired operating environment if necessary. Time is also an important consideration, particularly in terms of responsiveness and programming speed.