ARV and VARUNA launch AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022

Vetting tech talents worldwide to explore new agritech solutions to achieve sustainable development goals

BANGKOK, May 24, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — AI and Robotics Ventures (ARV), Thailand’s leading technology development and venture building company dedicated to leveraging cutting-edge AI & Robotics technologies, as a technology spin-off from PTTEP, an upstream national oil & gas company of Thailand, and VARUNA (Thailand) Co., Ltd., a leading smart technology solution provider for agriculture and environment, organized AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022.

ARV and VARUNA launch AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022.
ARV and VARUNA launch AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022.

The much-anticipated hackathon will serve to aspire the development of advanced AgriTech solutions to address the challenges of climate change to the agriculture sector and risks to food security towards global sustainable development goals. It is open to applicants from Thailand and around the world — including students, programmers, innovators and interested individuals — with the aim of leveraging cutting-edge technological advances to provide advanced agricultural solutions in the face of climate change.

The problem statement for the hackathon applicants is "Create a machine learning model to classify crop types in fields using Sentinel-2 satellite images and crop data from Thailand" with the aim of seeking new methodologies for crop classification which has the potential to become a critical feature of VARUNA Analytics platform and help modernize Thai agricultural sector and enhance farmers with smart farming capabilities. The registration period for the hackathon is running today until 7 June 2022. Online hackathon dates are set for 18-19 June 2022 and the final pitching day will be on 25 June 2022. The winners will receive a cash prize as well as an opportunity to develop innovations in partnership with ARV or its affiliates.

To mark the launch of the hackathon, Dr. Thana Slanvetpan, General Manager of ARV, said that "ARV is committed to innovating, developing and bringing cutting-edge AI & Robotics technologies to solve real-world challenges and lead world society towards sustainable development.

"We have organized an AI & Robotic Hackathon every year to provide an innovation platform for clients and partners seeking to invest in high-potential innovators and start-ups to develop viable solutions to meet market demands, including those of the global agriculture sector, which is facing a huge challenge in food production both in Thailand and across the world. Our aim is to aid in the achievement of ‘Zero Hunger’ worldwide, a key Sustainable Development Goal."

AI and robotics will play a large role in solving challenges related to food security and climate change, stressed Panunya Charoensawadpong, Co-Founder of VARUNA.

"According to the World Bank, approximately 30% of the world’s population lacks access to adequate food in 2020," Panunya said. "Even worse, the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed more people all over the world into poverty. Farmers are in urgent need of long-term support and the global food systems must become more efficient, equitable, and environmentally sustainable."

Panunya added that "VARUNA’s mission is to drive agricultural technology adoption in Thailand and empower the country’s agri-ecosystem so as to evolutionize smart farming practices with advanced technologies like data analytics, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), remote sensing and machine learning (ML) for smart farm, smart forest and carbon credit solutions.

"In line with our endeavor to take urgent actions to combat challenges to food security in the face of climate change, the AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022 aims to motivate bright minds and tech talents from around the world to develop AgriTech innovations that can effectively solve these critical global issues," Panunya said.

The hackathon open house day also featured a panel discussion on the topic Reimagine the Future How AI/ML Empowering Sustainable Agriculture, bringing together technology specialists from across various disciples, including Dr. Ravi Khetarpal, Executive Secretary of the Asia Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions (APAARI); and Dr. Soravis Supavetch, Assist Prof Department of Civil Engineering, Kasetsart University.

The discussion session covered various issues and challenges, notably the application of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) for data analytics to optimize farm productivity, reduce costs, conserve water, and reduce the use of harmful chemicals and pesticides, all of which lead to improved resource efficiency, climate resilience, and farm-to-fork sustainability. In addition, the invited experts explored several technical, social, and legal challenges that need be addressed before data in food systems can be fully utilized as well as the difficulty of land use and cover mapping to generate crop classification, which required adequate training and validation of data sets.

For more information and to register for the AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022, visit, or email: [email protected]. To watch the video of the AI & Robotics Hackathon 2022 Open House, go to Facebook fanpage ARV :


Vince is a tech geek, has a passion for sharing knowledge and loves to tinker with different gadgets. Whenever he gets a new gadget he just open the box and figure out how the gadget works without reading the manual.

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