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Don’t forget that the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International’s 11th Annual International Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition is taking place this weekend in San Diego, CA.

This year’s theme is “Underseas 11″ and will feature gambling themed tasks, such as grabbing a sack of cash from a “bank vault”, traversing an “air duct” (a floating PCV structure), and the like.

The competition is open to the public this Saturday and Sunday and is held at the U.S. Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare (SPAWAR) Systems Center’s Transducer Evaluation Center (TRANSDEC) pool located on Point Loma, San Diego. You can read the spectator FAQ (PDF) for more details.

25 teams from around the glob are registered for the competition, including my alma mater, NC State University. The teams have to construct a fully autonomous underwater vehicle that is capable of navigating, using machine vision, and acoustic navigation. It should be interesting (the competition is rather boring, since it’s underwater, but talking to the teams is fun). So, if you’re in the area, please go out and cheer them on. Send me some pictures if you do.

Update: The team from Cornell appears to be live-blogging the event.

Update 2: You can watch a live webcast of the finals here. It looks like the underwater video is being shot with an LBV from Seabotix.

Update 3: Here’s a list of the teams going into the finals.

Update 4: You can see the final standings here. Surprise ending!

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