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For Immediate Release
Monday, June 17, 2013

OU robotics team snags international competition honors at home

     Rochester, Mich. – For the first time ever, the Oakland Robotics Association (ORA) took the top prize at the 21st annual Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition (IGVC) this month. Topping 53 collegiate teams from across the globe, team members won the coveted Lescoe Cup.

     Additionally, ORA placed second in the Design Competition and the Joint Architecture for Unmanned Systems (JAUS) Challenge, and third in the Autonomous Navigation Challenge.

     IGVC challenges teams to build and operate autonomous robotic vehicles on an outdoor course with defined lanes, GPS waypoints and obstacles. The four-day competition is held annually on Oakland's campus.

     Engineering professor and ORA adviser KaC Cheok was proud of ORA team's accomplishments.

     "The OU robotics team is a multi-disciplinary group of engineering students whose talents peak simultaneously in the fields of mechanical, electrical, computer, mechatronics, and systems control engineering," he said. "They are motivated, confident, knowledgeable, critical, creative, tireless and ambitious. And they get it done!'"

     The team spent about 600 hours developing and building their autonomous robotic vehicle, Replicant at a cost of $14,000.

     Technologies utilized in the process are widely applicable and are quickly being commercialized in the development of vehicles that drive and park autonomously, brake automatically and execute lane detection.

     "The automotive industry is moving in a huge concerted and competitive direction in active driver's assistance systems where cars and trucks help to mitigate accidents," Cheok explained, who is also a co-chair and co-founder of IGVC.

     "We are already seeing the robotics technologies incorporated in automobiles today with collision warning and avoidance systems, automatic parking, and more."

     To learn more about IGVC, visit the website at To get involved or learn more about the ORA team, visit For more information about programs and events in the School of Engineering and Computer Sciences, visit

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Oakland University is a doctoral, research-intensive university located in Oakland County, Michigan. The university has 139 bachelor's degree programs and 125 graduate degree and certificate programs. Dedicated to delivering a distinctive undergraduate experience that is complemented by the strength of its graduate offerings and research accomplishments, Oakland University is organized into the College of Arts and Sciences, the Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine and the Schools of Business Administration, Education and Human Services, Engineering and Computer Science, Health Sciences, Nursing and The Honors College. Visit Oakland University on the Web at