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This is an unofficial translation of the rules. The only official version of the rules in cases of misunderstanding is the Slovak version.

Linefollower category

The competition task

To build an electronic controlled autonomous mobile robot, which will travel the whole defined path in a certain time. This task is a model of the real situation for example in automatic storage manipulators and other.

The path

The background of the path will be white with dark (black) navigation line on it (width 15 +/- 1 mm). Total length of the path won't be more than 20 meters. Materials used include paper, wood, linoleum or other similar materials.

The smallest radius of curves used in the path will be 10 cm. Total rising of the path won't exceed 3 cm; maximal rising or declining is 5%. Like in the real life, there can be random obstacles in the path (interrupted navigation line, obstacle on the line, illumination changes and other).

The robot's task is not to find the right way (there won't be any junctions or intersections). The task is only to follow the navigation line. There can also be a tunnel in the path (minimal dimension 25x25 cm). The line remains unchanged for the duration of the competition, so robot can learn from previous runs and for example complete straight stages in a faster time.

The robot starts within imagination circle of the 30 cm radius, which is marked as START. After the circle there is approx. 50 cm long straight stage, in which robot has to find the line and to catch it. After this stage comes starting line. This is represented by beam of light (cca 10 mm above ground). When the beam is interrupted by any part of the robot, the time starts to be measured.

The time measurement is stopped when the similar beam of light located at the end of the path is interrupted.

Robot operation

There must not be any interference between the robot and its team after the robot is set in the starting circle and turned on. The robot must be controlled only by its electronics.

The robot may not leave the line after crossing the starting line. Avoiding obstacles is the only one exception. While moving, the robot may not leave any marks or beacons on the table. No parts can remain on the path during the run.

The competitor is disqualified when the competition path is damaged.

Dimensions and size of the robot

The dimension of the robot cannot exceed 25 cm. Please, notify the limits given by tunnels and circle radiuses during the run.

Minimal dimensions and weight are not limited.

Construction and materials

There are no limits given on construction. There is only one requirement - the robot must be build by a competitor (competitors). This does not exclude commercial construction kits (LEGO, Fishertechnik), restricted are only complete final products.


There are no limits given on sensors type, count and dimensions, if they do not break other rules.

Competitors may not use external tools for navigation improvement (labels, beacons, mirrors,.).


No part of the robot can't work with voltages greater than 24 V. Total power consumption should be less than 20 A. Exceptions from this rule must be confirmed by jury. All control circuits must be parts of the robot. The robot may not be controlled from any external device, for example external PC connected to the robot by cable or wireless.

There are no restrictions on electronic parts.

Source of the energy is competitor's problem.

The competition and the order of the competitors

The competitors must be prepared to the start within 1 minute after the call. Every robot has total 3 runs to compete. But if the competitor does not present within 1 minute after the call, the run is lost. The time between the runs can be used for fixing and adjusting the robot. In the case of too many competitors, the jury can decrease the number of runs, or it can proclaim a qualifying round.

Time limits

The robot has 5 minutes to complete the path. After 5 minutes, the time measurement is stopped and the run is canceled. But the robot is not disqualified. The time stop has no affect on the next runs.

Evaluation and prices

Each registered robot after reaching the end of line will be rewarded with the diploma. The winner is the robot with the shortest time from any of the three runs. The jury can also award the robot with the best design or interesting construction.


The robot is disqualified when breaks any rule of the competition, but especially in these situations:


Three laws of robotics apply:
  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

Isaac Asimov: The complete robot, Nightfall Inc., 1982.

In case that device does not conform the safety rules, the jury may not allow it to participate and may not allow its operation.

Each robot, that could harm the participants, spectators, or devices, will be immediately shut down.

Climate conditions

The competition will take place in usual climate conditions (T = 270 - 310 K, p = 90 - 120 kPa, 0 - 90% RH).

The real illumination of the scene can not be pre-determined. Before the competition, there will be time for optimal settings of all sensors. The organizer can not guarantee that people won't cast shadows on the scene.

Warning: Constructers need to realize, that modern cameras use flash and infrared transmitters for focusing. The construction should count on these interference signals, because the competition will be electronically recorded using many of such devices.


Every team has to submit a technical documentation, which describes electronics, construction and control algorithm. The best way is to fill the web-page with the form. The organizer will provide a place for its publishing on his server.

The jury

There will be jury watching over the rules.

The jury has at least three members, it consists of the univeristy representatives, students and sponsors.

The jury decisions are deinitive in each controversial situation and also in the questions of rules interpretation.

When and where?

The competition will take place at the Slovak University of Technology, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technologym, Ilkovicova 3, Bratislava, Slovakia on April the 26th 2006. The competitors can examine the paths (not their competition shapes, of course) at dates published on this web page and also morning before the competition.

Registration and entry

There can individuals or teams (max. 5 members) on the competition. There are no age or profession limitations.

Any kind of help and comments are welcomed.

Registration form should be send till the end of March using this form.

Registration form... -->

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© 2006 Department of Automation and Control STU FEI
Ilkovicova 3, 812 19 Bratislava, Slovakia
Last update: 11th February 2008.
Responsible person: Richard Balogh.