SEPANG, August 24, 2016 – Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) did the country proud when,  representing Malaysia, they won the ABU Asia-Pacific Robot Contest (ROBOCON) 2016 in Bangkok, Thailand, on Sunday.

In the final match held at the Indoor Huamark Stadium last Sunday, Malaysia defeated five-time champions China to make history winning the competition for the first time since it was introduced in 2002.

In the competition, Malaysia beat India in the quarter-finals and Indonesia in the semi-finals to meet China, who had beaten Vietnam and Japan.

Malaysia was represented by UTM, consisting of 38 students from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering (FKE), Faculty of Mechanical Engineering (FKM), Faculty of Computing (FC) and the Faculty of Education.

Team manager Ir. Dr. Mohd Ridzuan bin Ahmad from FKE said the success of defeating China, represented by Northeastern University, who had an impeccable track record in the competition, was a special gift to all Malaysians to mark the 59th anniversary of Malaysian Independence.

In all matches, the team managed to complete the tasks in the game known as “Caiyo”. With this victory, the team proved that Malaysian students in general, specifically UTM students, were able to compete and be recognised on the world stage.

A total of 17 teams from 16 countries competed to be the winners of Asia’s premier robotics competition.

Each team must build two robots, which are the Eco, and the Hybrid. The Eco does not have a motivator to steer and receive energy from the motivator in the Hybrid. The Eco robot has only one steering actuator to control the direction of the road track that contains the upward slope, hill, river and downward slope. In addition to providing a driving force for the Eco robot, the Hybrid needs to take a wind turbine engine from the Eco robot, and climb a wind turbine pole to install the wind turbine engine.

The theme changes every year and this year, the theme was ‘Clean Energy Powering the World’, which was introduced by the host country Thailand. ABU ROBOCON introduced in 2002 is an annual robotics competition, that aims to become a platform for the development of autonomous robots to help humans (residential and industrial) in their daily lives.

The return of the national team at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) was welcomed by the Director General of Higher Education, Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE), Datuk Professor Dr Asma Ismail, UTM Deputy Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs and Alumni, Prof Datuk Dr Ismail Abd Aziz, Director of Student Development, Ministry of Higher Education Associate Prof. Dr Sopian Bujang, UTM Kuala Lumpur Campus Director Professor Dr Durrishah Idrus and UTM students.

Dr. Ridzuan Ahmad (standing third from right) with UTM team after the closing ceremony of ABU ROBOCON 2016 at Bangkok, Thailand

Dr. Ridzuan Ahmad (standing third from right) with UTM team after the closing ceremony of ABU ROBOCON 2016 at Bangkok, Thailand