About/History

The International Robotic Sailing Regatta is a robotic sailing competition historically held in North America in which teams of university,  college and high school students compete. The first event, in 2006, was hosted by Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario and was inspired by the success of a senior project at the University of British Columbia to build a robotic sailboat. Teams have since annually competed throughout the US and Canada. The goal is to create an unmanned sailboat that navigates through a variety of challenges with limited, if any, human control. Students are able to use this friendly competition between schools to apply their engineering knowledge in a multi-disciplinary task that requires mechanical, electrical, software and engineering management skills to deal with this highly variable environment.

The competition is oriented to boats competing in the SailBot Class (up to 2 meters in length) but smaller boats are popular due to their easier logistics. There is an Open Class (which are boats up to 4 meters in length) oriented toward non-school teams and those boats above 2 meters in preparation for the MicroTransAt Challenge (max 2.4 meters length) or World Robotics Sailing Championship (up to 4 meters in length). More and more teams are using the one-design hull MaxiMOOP as their basic platform due to its convenient size (1.2m), light weight (20 kg), payload capability and seaworthiness.

SailBot Perpetual Trophy

Past SailBot Events 

2017 – Annapolis, Maryland, USA

2016 – Kingston, Ontario, Canada

2015 – St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada

2014 – Vallejo, California, USA

2013 – Gloucester, Massachusetts, USA

2012 – Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

2011 – Annapolis, Maryland, USA

2010 – Kingston, Ontario, Canada

2009 – Annapolis, Maryland, USA

2008 – Annapolis, Maryland, USA

2007 – (not held)

2006 – Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Note: details of past events are in some cases quite lacking! If you have additional information, please send it to us!