Teleoperate Andy

Upgrade your service robot by teleoperation!

In 2022 the AIRA participants impressed us by their implementation of Andy — an autonomous plant service robot doing regular inspections and other tasks in chemical production facilities.

In 2024 we are asking YOU for the smartest way to remote control a mobile robot. We want to see technology which enables us to take remote control of Andy spontaneously and execute additional tasks from distance. This will bring the attractivity of mobile robotics to a complete new level,
as you can add this value to the existing contribution of autonomously operating mobile robots.

We, as part of the chemical industry, invite you to join this challenge and demonstrate your technology in an open innovation challenge with visibility at global scale.

Be invited to the ACHEMA — the world’s largest tradeshow for the process industry — and get the opportunity to win 40.000€.

The Challenge

Demonstrate the capabilities of your system

In 2024 you will have to demonstrate the capabilities of your system including one mobile robot with at least one robotics arm

  • in navigating your system remotely and

  • executing tasks remotely in a chemical plant or laboratory.

The challenge will be similar for both mobile technologies: leg-based robots being capable of climbing stairs as well as wheel-based robots.
Both are extremely valuable for the industry, as some environments like chemical factories require climbing stairs, others, like laboratories, usually have flat floors.

Demonstrating teleoperation is 100% the focus of this challenge. Within the final we will test the capabilities of your system live at ACHEMA 2024.

If your core competence is teleoperation of robots, but you are lacking a mobile robot for demonstration, please cooperate with a provider of mobile robotics. If you provide a short, precise and impressive pitch, we can forward your contact (email: for you. Please have in mind, that there is no guarantee of success, and you should start communication immediately.

The Opportunity

Adding Teleoperation will increase the value of Andy as a member of our teams at chemical production sites and laboratories. Our open-innovation challenge AIRA is looking for the most promising technology to deliver Teleoperation for Andy to all of us in near future.

To learn more about specific challenge conditions download the official rules here.

Your solution should:

We want to meet Andy — your teleoperated service robot — and find out how it performs.

While some situations require leg based-robots, other get along with wheel-based ones. Therefore both kinds of systems get slightly different tasks in our challenge.


Integrate a teleoperation system for remote control of your robot from anywhere enabling it to navigate in the factory (even stairs in case of legged robots) or laboratory (wheel-based robots).

Open & Close Doors

Teleoperated by an operator your robot must be able to open and close standard doors successfully.

Material control and identification

Sometimes the operator wants just to look around using your robot, take pictures and get the reading of a barcode to identify the inventory.

Waste disposal

Enabled by your robot the operator must be able to take waste from a surface and put it into a container.

Inspection of closed cabinets

Sometimes it is nescessary to look into cabinets. The operator must be able to open it and get a picture of the inside using your mobile robot.

Common maintenance task

Exchange a part of an equipment, like a filter is a common maintenance task. We will provide detailed information about the task in preparation of the final.

Buzz Wire Game

In order to demonstrate the overall capabilities of your teleoperation your teleoperated robot has to play a buzz wire game.

We do not restrict the number of wheels, legs, arms, etc.. All tasks are designed in a way, that your robot can solve them by one 6-axis robotics arm on a mobile platform and with an additional tool to hold a bottle or similar as a payload. In preparation of the details we will adopt the tasks at least partially to the specific design of the robots of the selected finalists, as we want to evaluate your capabilities in teleoperation and not the technical design of your robotics platform.

How it works

  • Submit your proposal

    Deadline January 7th, 2024

    Please use our online — provided by November 2023 — submission form and include title, a detailed description of your proposed solution and a high-level plausible project plan. We expect carefully thought through projects rather than ideas.

    To learn more about specific challenge conditions download the official rules here.

  • Evaluation of proposals & finalist notification

    Until January 19th, 2024

    All submissions will be reviewed by the AIRA team, and we expect to select six finalist teams to take part in the competition and the finalist event.

  • Development phase (incl. transport to Frankfurt)

    January 20th — June 9th, 2024

    We will be in regular exchange with you to follow your development. Together with you we will organize the transport back and forth financially covered by us.

  • Finalist event and award ceremony

    June 10th — 14th, 2024

    All finalists will be invited to present their solution at the finalist event in Germany in Frankfurt at the world largest tradeshow in chemical industry. Travel, accommodation, and transport will be covered by the sponsor.


What's in it for you?
Six finalist teams will have the chance to present their solution at the finalist event. The top three receive an award of 40.000€, 20.000€ and 15.000€ respectively. A further 10.000€ is awarded to each remaining finalist.

About AIRA challenges

The challenges of Advanced Industrial Robotic Applications (AIRA) have been identified by a group of four companies (BASF, Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim and Wacker) which, under the auspices of NAMUR Interessengemeinschaft Automatisierungstechnik der Prozessindustrie e.V., like to induce new solutions for automate routine tasks in chemical facilities.
The challenge itself, is organized by INVITE GmbH.

Meet the Team