The 2020 FS-AI competition in review

Formula Student Team

The ADS-DV at a wet Acceleration course in 2019
The ADS-DV at a wet Acceleration course in 2019

Head Statics Judge for FS-AI Holly Watson-Nall reflects on the highlights of this year's competition and the high bar that has been set for teams developing autonomous vehicle systems for FS2021.

This year's FS-AI competition was a big success. We have nearly doubled our entry list up to 7 student teams this year, and as always had a fantastic judging team of industry experts.

The quality of the teams this year was clear from the outset; as the judges carefully scored each team's events we realised this was going to be a pretty exciting and close competition! The top teams in each event were consistently scoring over 70% in the marks and all teams had brought a high level of detail and clear understanding of autonomous driving systems. All  the returning teams had upped their game and we were joined by new universities, challenging for top spots.

For the ADS class (where the teams design and build their own autonomous vehicles), Edinburgh University followed their impressive form from 2019 to win the class overall in 2020, with Bath University displaying much improved understanding of their systems.

For the DDT class (where the teams use the provided IMechE vehicle), Oxford Brookes won the top spot by an incredible 2.2 points (with a total of 399 points!) over newcomers Ain Shams University.

Another highlight this year was a brand new event titled Simulation Development. With the students left without access to physical hardware in the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual testing and development has never been so important to autonomous vehicles; FS-AI reflected this in a dedicated event this year. This encouraged teams to improve their simulators or build one for the first time- all incredibly relevant development work for their 2021 systems, and allowing remote working for students. Oxford Brookes impressed the most in this new category, winning by just 10 points over Edinburgh University's competitive entry.

We can't wait to see the real autonomous systems on the vehicles next year and see the teams battle it out on track and we challenge any UK or international universities to consider entering FS-AI in 2021 and join a world class quality competition for autonomous vehicle development.

Want to get involved in next year's competition? Check out all the rules and document submission deadlines on the Formula Student website.

We are grateful to FS-AI Partner Babcock International Group for their support.


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