Introduction to Systems Engineering students engage in robotics competition.

Dr. Andrew Wright’s sections of SYEN 1310. Introduction to Systems Engineering engaged in a robotics competition as the final activity in the course.  The robotics competition involved two robots versus two robots, constructed from Vex Robotics hardware, playing soccer with a tennis ball.  This soccer had a twist, the bottom of the goal counted for 1 point, while the top of the goal counted for 5 points.  Matches were 4 minutes long.
Initially, teams were paired randomly.  The top two teams were allowed to pick a partner and compete in a best of three final.
The highest scoring team was Vexed and Confused, who picked Megatron to be its alliance partner.  The second ranked team was Taimoor, who picked The Excess as its alliance partner.  Taimoor and The Excess prevailed in the final, 2 wins to nil.
Taimoor’s robot was agile and had an arm capable of picking the tennis ball off the ground and place it into the goal, while The Excess were powerful and had a mechanism that allowed it to control the tennis ball and score in the bottom goal.  This combination proved to be a very effective team, as Taimoor was freed to score when The Excess interfered with the opposing robots.  Cooperation proved to be the most powerful bonus to the winning alliance.
The preparation for the competition occurred over the final five weeks of the semester, and students used concepts taught in class, such as how to design a gear train to amplify torque or speed, to improve their designs.  10 teams competed in the competition.
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