Off-World Robotics

Current project

Project Snapshot

Offworld Robotics is a multidisciplinary student engineering group focused on building sophisticated exploration rovers to compete in rover competitions such as the ERC, ARC and the URC, to test our robotics engineering skills against the best university robotics teams in the world.

Off-World Robotics

About ChallENG Student Project

Offworld Robotics provides opportunities for students to develop their understanding of robotics systems and design, and the integration of all engineering disciplines into a single project. The challenges that Offworld Robotics provide are an excellent complement to a wide range of engineering degrees.

Who we are looking for

Offworld Robotics are looking for students who are highly driven, can take initiative and can positively contribute to the team culture. All disciplines, backgrounds, and skill levels are welcome.

Why you should join

  • Develop an understanding of robotics systems and design.           
  • Learn how various engineering disciplines are integrated in robotics.       
  • Learn and implement engineering skills to practical engineering problems.
  • Opportunity to participate in robotics competitions.        
  • Build friendships and learn from shared experiences.
  • Flexibility to work on problems of your choice.

Your Pathways in Our Team

Offworld Robotics is a multidisciplinary team, where UNSW students from a wide range of backgrounds to work together. The project is split into seven major subteams: Mechanical, Electrical, Software, Embedded, In-Situ Resource Utilisation (ISRU), Robotic Arm, and Operations.

The Mechanical subteam handles the development of the rover’s chassis, drive system and suspension. The role of the subteam is to design, manufacture, and test unique rover parts and assemblies using CAD and CAM tools, allowing students to experience the full scope of mechanical engineering methodology.

The Electrical subteam is responsible for electrical system design of the rover. This includes requirements analysis of electrical components, power distribution systems, signal control, and telecommunications between the ground station and the rover.

The Software subteam designs and develops the robotic software architecture that controls robot action and behaviour. This includes processing of sensory information such as SLAM using LiDAR and RGBD cameras, autonomous exploration, process management, and motion planning.

The Embedded subteam focuses on low-level microcontroller programming to interface with electrical components to perform specific tasks such as motor actuation with a closed-loop PID controller, LED indication and processing sensory input.

The In Situ Resource Utilisation (ISRU) subteam is challenged with the design of a compact experimental apparatus designed for non-destructive retrieval and on-site chemical analysis of extra-terrestrial soil, with the goal of determining if the soil is capable of supporting alien life forms.

The Robotic Arm subteam is responsible for the design, manufacturing, and control of a robotic arm and its manipulator. The subteam aims to develop a complete subsystem and consider its function from mechanical design, electrical components & power requirements, software control and trajectory planning.

The Operations subteam are vital for the organisation and progression of the student project. The subteam is responsible for inventory logistics, budgeting, public relations, seeking Offworld Robotics ventures, and provide student opportunities for Industrial Training and upskilling.

A member can join any subteam if interested, regardless of their background. OWR members are free to specialise within a field or broaden their skillsets by working across multiple teams.

Team Academic