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Underwater robots to invade

Students (above) launch remotely operated vehicles at the 2007 Marine Advanced Technology Education Center’s international student ROV competition.

Scripps Institution of Oceanography is hosting the seventh annual Marine Advanced Technology Education Center’s remotely operated vehicles (ROV) competition today through Saturday at UCSD’s Canyonview Aquatics Center.

Approximately 60 student teams from around the world will compete in underwater missions using robots they designed and built.

Middle school through college students make up the teams that will perform tasks to “see” and “feel” a simulated hydrothermal vent community using remotely operated arms, infrared eyes and temperature sensors. This year’s theme is “Diving to the Deep: Uncovering the Mysteries of Mid-Ocean Ridges.”

The public may view the competition from a poolside viewing tent, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. tomorrow and 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday.