School of Engineering students finalists of the Innovate FPGA competition

Estudiants de l'Escola d'Enginyeria, finalistes al concurs Innovate FPGA

A team of students from the UAB School of Engineering received an award of excellence at the world competition of applications for FPGA reconfigurable devices with a system that automatically recognises mushrooms through photos taken with a mobile device.


A team formed by PhD students at the School of Engineering Juan Borrego and Marc Codina, and directed by lecturers David Castells and Jordi Carrabina, came in 8th in the grand final of the Innovate FPGA, an international competition organised by the companies Intel and Terasic, where teams of university students propose innovative ideas and develop them to demonstrate how they can be implemented into Intel's reconfigurable chips (FPGA) integrated into Terasic platforms.

The project proposed by the PhD students of the TECNIO CEPHIS group at the Department of Microelectronics and Electronic Systems consists in an automatic mushroom recognition system through photos taken with a mobile phone. The images are sent to a server using deep learning networks (DLN) to recognise each of the mushrooms appearing in the image and then send information back to be viewed on the device. Field-programmable gate arrays (FPGA) are particularly adequate when implementing these artificial intelligence techniques given that they offer high performance with a reduced consumption of energy thanks to the fact that they allow designing and implementing digital circuits tailored to each application.

The grand final took place in Tianjin, China, on 10 December 2019. The UAB students demonstrated how their system worked in front of a jury made up of experts from the industry and academics who highlighted the originality and maturity of the project and its eventual commercialisation. A total of 270 teams from around the world participated in the 2019 edition, divided into four different regions: America, Europe, China and Asia/Pacific. In the strictly European regional phase, the UAB team won third place in the competition.


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