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Defrost : 2nd place award of RoboSoft Grand Challenge manipulation

Defrost* project-team has participated at the international IEEE-RAS Robosoft 2018 conference. Defrost manipulator received the second place award for the manipulation challenge.

IEEE International Conference on Soft Robotics 2018

Soft robotics is a recent exciting trend of robotics, taking the challenge of using soft materials and deformable structures for building robots, with high potential for impact in science and in applications. Given the young and fast growing area and the lively interdisciplinary community that grew around soft robotics, the RoboSoft international conference aims at presenting recent progresses in this field, for discussing new science, new technologies and new opportunities for applications.

RoboSoft 2018 edition took place at Livorno, Italy from the 24 to the 28 of April.

The RoboSoft Grand Challenge includes two different competitions:
– Terrestrial race: a competition on different terrains with obstacles avoidance
– Manipulation: a competition in the manipulation task of different objects
It aims at inspiring and pushing innovations in robotics technology.

Defrost manipulator nammed Echelon3 received the second place award for the manipulation challenge.

Defrost project-team

Their Vision

Future robots don’t need to be «rigid» but made of complex deformable structures, composed of stiff and soft regions, close to organic materials that we can find in the nature. Soft robotics opens very attractive perspectives in terms of new applications, reduction of manufacturing costs, robustness, efficiency and security. It could constitute a great jump in robotics in the following years.

The challenge

The biggest obstacle to make this possible is that the current methods to design and control don’t work for deformable ones and new approaches have to be invented.

To overcome this obstacle the team works on a novel approach that integrates a real-time model of both the robot deformations and its interaction into the control loop of the soft robots. This is where the challenge begins…


*Defrost project-team is associated with Inria, Centrale Lille, l’Université de Lille – sciences et technologies, le CNRS. Within the UMR 9189 CNRS-Centrale Lille-Université de Lille − sciences et technologies, CRIStAL.

Keywords: Soft robotics Robosoft Robotique déformable Concours Prix Robotique