World Robotic Sailing Championship & International Robotic Sailing Conference

Welcome to the seventh annual World Robotic Sailing Championship and International Robotic Sailing Conference (WRSC/IRSC), 2014.

We're pleased to announce that the WRSC / IRSC is coming to Galway, Ireland from September 7th to 13th of this year (2014).

Previous events were held in Austria (2008), Portugal (2009), Canada (2010), Germany (2011), Wales (2012) and Brest (France) in 2013.

The WRSC is a competition open to fully autonomous and unmanned sailing boats up to 4m in length. The accompanying International Robotic Sailing Conference (IRSC) provides an ideal venue to discuss the broad range of scientific problems involved in the design and development of autonomous sailboats.

Latest News

Bottle Boat Competition.

The Bottle Boat competition will be held in Rusheen Bay on Saturday the 13th of September at 11AM. Come down and meet the teams, watch the action, and enjoy the weather. As usual, follow our facebook page for up to date news and details.

The IRSC/WRSC draws to a close.

Well, the main event has drawn to a close, and congratulations to the teams for their efforts and to the support boat teams, Principal Race Officer David Vinnell, and all of our helpers. The final results will be on the web site in the next day or so.

Our Facebook Page

You can find us on Facebook here - we will be keeping the page updated during the event, as well as our twitter feed at @wrsc2014 so stay tuned.

Updated Rules.

We have updated the rules of the WRSC to clarify some details which were raised during our conference call with the teams. We have also added the dates and times of each event.

Due to requests from spectators and competitors alike, we have moved the Bottle Boat competition from Wednesday the 10th of September, to Saturday the 13th. This adds an extra day to the event, and allows the entrants in the main competition a chance to also enter the Bottle Boat competition.

Robotic Sailing

Robotic sailing offers the potential of long range and long term autonomous wind propelled, solar or wave-powered carbon neutral devices. Robotic sailing devices could contribute to monitoring of environmental, ecological, meteorological, hydrographic and oceanographic data. These devices can also be used in traffic monitoring, border surveillance, security, assistance and rescue. The dependency on changing winds and sea conditions presents a considerable challenge for short and long term route and stability planning, collision avoidance and boat control. Building a robust and seaworthy sailing robot presents a truly complex and multi-disciplinary challenge for boat designers, naval architects, systems/electrical engineers and computer scientists. Since 2004, competitions such as Sailbot, World Robotic Sailing Championship and Microtransat have sparked an explosion in the number of groups working on autonomous sailing robots. Despite this interest the longest distance sailed autonomously remains only a few hundred miles. Many of the challenges in building truly autonomous sailing robots still remain unsolved. IRSC and WRSC promote the development of autonomous wind-propelled sailing robots.

Premier Event Hosts / Sponsors


Hewlett Packard Galway is a major corporate centre for software development and business services. It hosts teams which span the breadth of HP's portfolio, including significant investments in cloud computing and data analytics.

Located in Ballybrit, HP Galway will shortly move into a purpose built facility currently under construction.

At HP, we live for the big idea, the next great discovery. "Invent" is more than a word: it's who we are. Everything we do, we do to make technology more practical, usable, and valuable to our customers. Want to join us?


With over 17,000 students and more than 2,200 staff, NUI Galway has a distinguished reputation for teaching and research excellence in the fields of arts, social science, and celtic studies; business, public policy and law; engineering and informatics; medicine, nursing and health sciences; and science.

NUI Galway offers a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees and diplomas of international standard, which provide students with opportunities for personal and academic development, as well as giving them the knowledge and skills they need to pursue successful careers.


Galway Harbour is located in the area of Galway City, it has a history dating back to the 10th Century and has just announced the final plans of its proposed new port.

At the Port of Galway, we are embracing the challenges of today's highly competitive marketplace with a proposed re-development of our port. This will herald an exciting transformation in the way we do business. This change will be reflected in our facilities, operations, partnerships, processes, performance and our people.


Galway Bay Sailing Club is based in Renville Oranmore, approximately 7 miles from Galway City. The club is renowned for the warm welcome it extends to its members and visitors alike. It organises and facilitates the racing and sailing of dinghies, cruisers and multihulls for adults and junior members.

The club also offers training and instruction to adults, juniors and non-members. The clubhouse with bar and catering facilities opens on Sundays afternoons and also Tuesday and Wednesday nights from April to September to facilitate the various racing fleets.

Previous WRSC images courtesy of Colin Sauze of Aberystwyth University