Portugal

Despite its multiculturality, RobotCraft was born in Coimbra, Portugal, and it is there that it takes place every summer, every year. Portugal, or the Portuguese Republic, is the oldest state in the Iberian Peninsula and one of the oldest European nation-states, located in the southwestern Europe. It is the westernmost country of mainland Europe, being bordered to the west and south by the Atlantic Ocean and to the north and east by Spain.

As a founding member of NATO and the Community of Portuguese Language Countries, Portugal is also a member of numerous other international organizations, including the United Nations, the European Union, the eurozone and the OECD. Portugal is a developed country with a high-income advanced economy and high living standards, being among the twenty countries best placed in terms of social progress. Portugal was one of the big winners at World Travel Awards’ Europe Gala Ceremony 2017, receiving the prize as Europe's Leading Destination 2017 (Country Portugal), as Europe's Leading Tourist Board 2017 (“Turismo de Portugal”) and as Europe's Leading Beach Destination 2017 (The Algarve, south of Portugal).

The Portuguese cuisine is considered a Mediterranean cuisine and, therefore, very diverse (to not say the best!). Portuguese cuisine is particularly famous for seafood. The influence of Portugal’s former colonial possessions is also notable, especially in the wide variety of spices used. These spices include piri-piri and black pepper, as well as cinnamon, vanilla and saffron. Olive oil is one of the bases of Portuguese cuisine, which is used both for cooking and flavouring meals. Garlic is widely used, as are herbs, such as bay leaf and parsley.

And let us not even start talking about the wine! Summery vinho verdes from the green northwest. Full-bodied reds and fruity whites from Douro, Dao and Alentejo. Bubbly from Bairrada; legendary Port and Madeira vintages. Honeyed moscatel from Setubal. Rare tipples from odd places like the Lisbon surfer suburb of Carcavelos. Or the World Heritage vineyards clinging to a mid-Atlantic volcano on Pico Island. Just pick and let us meet at are wine tasting RobotCraft even soon!

Here are some dishes you really need to try!

Coimbra

The Centro Region of Portugal, with Coimbra as its strategic core and as its capital, is one of Portugal's richest regions by the abundance of natural streams of water, forests, arable land and the long coast line. The Centro Region has some of the most economically dynamic and densely populated municipalities of the country, being one of the largest industrialized areas in Portugal. Important products include motor vehicles, food, electrical appliances, machinery, chemicals, and paper. Higher education, research and development, healthcare, information technologies, biotechnology, forestry, agriculture, fishing, and tourism, are major activities in the region. The major industry, commerce and services centres are located in and around Coimbra, Aveiro, Viseu, Leiria, Covilhã, Castelo Branco, and Figueira da Foz. Important light industry and agriculture is also based in and around Guarda, Torres Novas, Torres Vedras and Caldas da Rainha.
Coimbra is located on a hill by the Mondego River with many archaeological structures dating back to the Roman era, when Coimbra was the settlement of Aeminium. Coimbra is a cosmopolitan and innovative city, with attractive cultural offerings and a wide range of sporting activities available. Its recent recognition as a World Heritage site by UNESCO has brought worldwide attention to the city. Harked as a “hidden gem of Europe" by the global press, Coimbra is now a place increasingly sought by tourists, where a rich selection of cultural events and social life flourish day by day, capturing the imagination of those who visit and causing the area to flourish.
Coimbra was the capital of Portugal from 1131 to 1255, having since then evolved into a major cultural centre, mostly due to the University of Coimbra.

University of Coimbra – Institute of Systems and Robotics

By signing “Scientiae Thesaurus Mirabilis”, King Dinis created the oldest university of the country and one of the oldest in the world. Dated from 1290, the document originated the General Study, recognised in the same year by Pope Nicholas IV. A century after the birth of the nation, the University of Coimbra germinated. It starts operating in Lisbon but, in 1308, it is transferred to Coimbra, alternating between the two cities until 1537, when it is definitely settled in the city of river Mondego.

Initially confined to the Royal Palace, the University spread throughout the city of Coimbra, while modifying its landscape and making of it the University City. It later enlarged with the creation of Pole II, dedicated to Engineering and Technology, and with a third pole devoted to Life Sciences.

To study at the University of Coimbra is to pursue the intellectual history of the country in the school that graduated some of the most distinguished personalities of national culture, science and politics.

With over seven centuries, the University of Coimbra has a unique tangible and intangible heritage, keystone in the scientific culture of Europe and the World; a capital that the University of Coimbra has applied to UNESCO World Heritage.

The Faculty of Sciences and Technology (FCTUC) is the largest by number of professors and students, awards the highest number of academic degrees, and manages more classrooms and research units than any other in the University of Coimbra, including the renowned Institute of systems and Robotics.

The Institute of Systems and Robotics (ISR-UC) is a Portuguese private, non-profit research institution. ISR-UC promotes advanced multidisciplinary R&D in the areas Mobile Autonomous Robotics, Intelligent Transportation Systems, Search and Rescue Robotics, Robotic Manipulation, Computer Vision, Medical Robotics, Assistive Technologies, Biomedical Engineering, Advanced Industrial Automation Technologies and Intelligent Energy Systems. ISRUC gives special attention to international scientific research cooperation with centres of excellence, as well as to training and education Initiatives. ISR was founded in 1992 with the global purpose of setting up a first-class multi-disciplinary research team, able to carry out leading edge research in several important areas of science and technology, with a special emphasis in systems and robotics. ISR has also developed strong links with industry, either existing national and international companies, or promoting the creation of spin-offs, such as Ingeniarius.

Ingeniarius

Ingeniarius is a private SME that aims for research and technological development in the many fields of engineering, including robotics and automation, as well as all components within human society, namely the quality of life, sports and health. Ingeniarius has been providing several R&D services that led to well-validated state-of-the-art solutions, accessible to everyone. These solutions followed the typical product development cycle, being currently at a technology readiness (TRL) level 8 and 9, thus as fully integrated as commercial products.

Besides R&D, Ingeniarius also organizes and promotes events, such as professional training, scientific/technical conferences and entertainment, educational and promotional events of technological nature. RobotCraft is the most successful example, being an international internship with a unique summer course in robotics for students from higher education level.