October 17, 2016      

The earth's underwater landscape, largely ignored due to the danger and expense of exploring it, is a step closer to being at least mapped, thanks to an Xprize competition.

The organizers of the Shell Ocean Discovery Xprize contest picked 32 robotics teams on Oct. 13 to pitch their plans to build semi-autonomous systems capable of high-resolution underwater mapping at depths of up to 13,123 feet (4,000 meters).

Participants come from university research departments, startups, and established c...

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