Student Autonomous Snow Plow Competition – Call for Participation

Autonomous snow-plows are a next-generation engineering challenge that have tremendous economic and social potential. CAVCOE is organizing and hosting the second student competition in Canada. The aim of this competition is to provide an opportunity for students to apply their knowledge and skills from the classroom to a tangible real-world problem, and to develop technical and business skills required to excel in today’s high-tech world.

The competition is open to teams from Canadian secondary and post-secondary education institutions. Registered student teams are required to develop a scale-model of an autonomous or semi-autonomous snow-plow vehicle capable of completing a number of snow-plow style tasks.

A major snowstorm has dumped a metre of snow on Ottawa Ontario just in time for the City’s annual Winter Expo. What to do? Fortunately, an R&D company you have co-founded is developing autonomous ground vehicles. Your company has developed an autonomous snow-plow and think this is a great opportunity to test the prototype. Your company offers to help the city with this emergency and the city has accepted, provided that your team-mates are available to operate it. Your company accepts the challenge.

Teams must develop a snow-plow capable of completing a number of snow clearing tasks that may involve recognition of objects, detecting and avoiding hazardous conditions, path-finding and avoiding people and cars. Additionally, teams will be required to present a business case for their design. Teams will be scored on their design, their business pitch, and their snow-plow’s ability to complete one or more challenges.


Key dates:

  • February 7, 2020: deadline for teams to indicate their intent to participate in the competition.
  • February 28, 2020: registered teams to deliver a report with the technical design (approximately 10 pages) to the competition judge panel.
  • May 2-3, 2020: teams to be present at the Ottawa L5 Automated Vehicle Test Facility to make a presentation on their design, demonstrate their vehicles and compete with the other teams.

To express interest and to ask questions:
Barrie Kirk


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