Gallery: Nanosoccer 2009

The world's smallest soccer players

Competitor #1

ETH Zurich competed with their Magmite "the Twinjet" nanorobot, pictured here.ETH Zurich

Competitor #2

The U.S. Naval Academy chose a decidedly less creative name for their nanobot, the USNA.U.S. Naval Academy

The Soccer Fields

The nanosoccer field is smaller than a quarter! In fact, you can fit several fields on a microchip measuring 1.2 inches across.the NIST

Nanobot and Fruit Fly Head

For another mind-blowing size comparison, here's a nanobot placed next to a fruit fly's head.ETH Zurich

Nanosoccer Stadium

In its entirety, this is the smallest stadium in the world.the NIST

The Events

Of the three nanosoccer events, the first was a 2-millimeter dash requiring bots to sprint from one goal to the other in under two minutes. Next came the obstacle course (pictured here), where the bots had to maneuver around "defenders" (polymer posts shaped like soccer players) to reach the end goal. Finally, in the ball handling drill, nanobots had three minutes to dribble as many nanoballs as possible, while also avoiding the same obstacles from before.the NIST

Nanosoccer Ball

This silicon dioxide disk, viewed from above, is the nanoball kicked around by the bots. It has the diameter of a human hair and T mark so that it stands out from the field.the NIST

The Winners

The ETH Zurich team won by a landslide with their Magmite "the Twinjet" nanobot.IRIS/ETH Zurich