"We feel like this is the birth of the robotics boom," said Eric Meyhofer, part of the Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute, which brought a 400-pound robot called Chimp to the competition.
Sixteen teams from around the world came to the Homestead-Miami Speedway to take part in the two-day event. As many as eight will be chosen to get as much as $1 million each for another year of work. Next year, the Pentagon plans to hand out $2 million to help the winner continue developing its robot.
The idea for the contest came from the Defense Department during the 2011 earthquake that spawned a radiation crisis at Japan's Fukushima nuclear plant. Pentagon researchers wanted to build a robot that could have endured the radiation and more quickly contained its spread by venting reactors and preventing explosions.
btw the SCHAFT? japanese des. won... owned by google that is..