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    About the ION

    The Institute of Navigation is the world's premier non-profitprofessional society dedicated to the advancement of the art and science ofpositioning, navigation and timing (PNT). Founded in 1945, it serves a diversecommunity including those interested in air, space, marine, land navigation,and position determination. Its membership is worldwide, and it is affiliatedwith the International Association of Institutes of Navigation.




    The Mini-Urban Challenge is a national competition that challenges high school students to design and operate an autonomous "car" using a LEGO® Mindstorms® kit to successfully navigate through a model city. The teams are placed based on their total scores; 70% of the total score is based on the navigation of the mini city; 30%of the total score is based on the presentation given by the team.

    City Competition Objective:

    Your challenge is to design a car that can successfully navigate the Mini-Urban Challenge using the provided sensors. Your car must enter the city from the designated entry point and travel through the city on the roads, obeying the marked speed limits and stop signs. While in the city you must stop at the designated locations. Upon checking in at your assigned calibration time during competition you will be given a map of the city along with the locations of six stops. You will be required to visit each of the stops your team has been assigned and stop for a minimum of 5 seconds.These stops may be made in any order. At each stop you will be given a designated parking place. You may choose to park correctly in the designated parking place for additional points. Once all the stops have been completed you will then be required to exit the city via the same entry location.

    Your team will have 60 minutes at a calibration station, followed by a maximum of 60 minutes within the competition course.Time within the competition course can be used for practice runs and up to three scored attempts. The judges must be informed before you begin a scored run you plan to count towards the competition. Once your time within the city has expired, all scoring will stop. Your top scoring run will be counted toward your team's composite score. The total time of the top scoring run will also be recorded for tie-breaking purposes.

    Oral Presentation:

    Each team shall give a technical presentation as part of the Regional Competition. If teams qualify for the National Competition they will give their presentation again. The presentations will be approximately 30 minutes in length. A projector and computer with Microsoft Power Point 2007 shall be provided.

    Best In Show:

    The Best in Show Award will be presented to the team that has the most aesthetically pleasing car. Since the definition of"aesthetically pleasing" is subjective you are encouraged to personalize your car however you like. Each team will have the opportunity to explain to the judges why they designed their car the way they did. The judging of this award will be based on two categories - look and feel as well as form and function, each worth 50% of the total score. Each vehicle will be given a grade based on a 5-point scale for each category.

     Merlin at the competition....
     Roberto Programming
     Warming up
     Practice Course  The track
     Make it happen
     Try it out
     Track - long view  Getting ready
     Fix it!
     The judge
     Merlin Self Corrects
     Merlin off course
     Isabel Watching  Final Programming