The Greylock Echo

Robotics Prepares for Competitive Season

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Robotics Prepares for Competitive Season

Alex Wilson, Staff Writer

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Since the establishment of the First Robotics club at Mount Greylock, Mr. Louis and students have worked to complete a robot before the upcoming Springfield competition. First Robotics is an international competitive robotics league for high school students which aims at expanding stem ideals in the community via problem-solving, engineering, programming, and math. The first robotics competition is divided into four small competitions starting from First Robotics Lego League Jr., the First Lego League, First Tech Challenge, and then finally to the First Robotics Competition. First Robotics is challenging, Mount Greylock junior Brandon Fahlenkamp explained: “the competition challenges all your stem skills. It’s like the varsity level of robotics.”

The second competition is a space-themed robotics competition.  The objective of this year’s competition for students is that they must find a way to put cargo and hatch panels on small rockets and cargo ships.  The hatch panels are small disks the robot must carry and stick on to the designated objective points earning the teams points. The team must place the cargo, or “an elementary school kickball” into one of the rockets or cargo ships. The robots designed from the robotics team must meet the criteria of smooth movement, lifting, climbing, productivity, and functionality to achieve the most points.

Two years ago,  the robotics team won “The Rookie Inspiration Award” which is given to a team that celebrates outstanding success in the appreciation for engineering and engineers.  Fahlenkamp explains this year, however, that, “we’ve learned from the mistakes from previous years and this year we are working within our team’s limits, analyzing the game, and are finding the most efficient ways possible to win.”   Faculty leader, Dan Louis, head of the team, expressed confidence by saying, “we’ve doubled our team size and we did have a really good build season.”

The president of the robotics team, Fahlenkamp, explained that robotics is, “the hardest fun you’ll ever have!” and “is doable for anyone at Greylock.” Mr. Louis also reminded the Echo that “even if you have no experience with a wrench or design, anyone can help fuel the work that comes with robotics. Even if you don’t feel comfortable with doing building you can learn to program, do the marketing, and or do the accounting. We want the students to try everything and have a well-rounded experience of skills at robotics.” Mr. Louis also said to those wanting to join the Robotics club that, “let’s say you don’t like the building of the robot, you can work on the marketing side or programming. This allows the student to find their niche.” Those wishing to support the upcoming competitions can attend March 8th in Waterbury Connecticut and then again March 24th in Springfield Massachusetts.

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Robotics Prepares for Competitive Season