The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Subterranean Challenge represented a multiyear (2018–2021), competition-based initiative to inspire and shape the future of field robotics, specifically in advancing integrated technologies for operating in complex underground environments. Bringing together robotics researchers and innovators from around the world to compete in physical and simulated contests, it spotlighted significant opportunities to incentivize and extract high-value technical results and insights to inform future advances. This article captures and quantifies these results, extracts relevant insights, and offers lessons learned and recommendations for further work.


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