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About us:

Team Tormenta (Spanish for 'storm') is primarily a student team, drawing members from many different stages of academia. Many team members are pursuing undergraduate, Masters or PhD degrees in Electrical Engineering or Computer Science at the University of Southern California. Several team members were major contributors to a high school team that qualified for and participated in the 2004 DARPA Grand Challenge. This team of highly motivated students is backed by a knowledgeable base of advisors consisting of USC professors and industry professionals.

The team's vision is that a group of passionate individuals can accomplish even the most difficult challenge. "We see this competition as a way to prove ourselves," states team leader Ben Raskob. "The Grand Challenge can be won, but it will take hard work, ingenuity, and above all, sound engineering design." The team is taking a dual approach to the problem, focusing on implementing the basic functionality required of the vehicle, while exerting a separate research effort on solving the difficult vision problems that will be encountered by the vehicle.

Team Tormenta's vehicle, whose glossy black exterior gave it the nickname of "The Black Pearl", is a 4-wheel-drive Jeep Cherokee modified for off-road use and actuated for computer control.

Click here for information sheet.

The Team:
Ben Raskob - Team Leader, Univ. of Southern California
Joe Bebel - Univ. of Southern California
Dr. Alice C. Parker - Univ. of Southern California
Dr. Donald J. Bebel - Northrop Grumman Mission Systems
Dr. Petros Ioannou - Univ. of Southern California
Tej Patel - Palos Verdes High School
Jianlong Zhang - Univ. of Southern California
Jake Madden - Univ. of Southern California
Kim Tran - Univ. of Southern California
Vikram Nair - Univ. of Southern California
Bob Catalano - Island Pacific Jeep
Langley Kersenboom - LK Motorsports

Team Tormenta