Ready… Set… BUILD!

The iRaiders team was on the edge of their seats January 5th as they awaited the game details for Destination: Deep Space. The kick-off marks the beginning of the build and design season for the 2019 robotics team. The kickoff sets the scene for the game, as well as giving the team the requirements the robot must meet. The context of the game centers around two competing alliances (three robotics teams each playing together) working to collect samples from Planet Primus. However unpredictable weather and terrain patterns make remote robotic control necessary for their mission. There are only 2:30 left until lift-off and the alliances must try to collect as many cargo pods as possible before the launch.

Given the context, the kickoff next explains what each match is going to entail. The first challenge begins the moment the match begins. For the first fifteen seconds a sandstorm will conceal the driver’s view of the robot on the field. This requires each robot to either be at least partially autonomous or a camera attached to the robot, so the driver can view the field. In these seconds, robots must be deployed from their habitats and begin picking up cargo pods. Next the robots begin loading the rockets and cargo ships with the cargo pods. After fifteen seconds the sandstorm clears and the alliance are left with two minutes and fifteen seconds to prepare the rockets and hatch panels, load more cargo pods, and finally return the robots.

There are several requirements the robot must meet in order to be able to compete well in each of the matches. As previously mentioned, the beginning fifteen seconds require the robot to either be autonomous or have a camera. The robots have to be able to lift the game pieces from the human player station, and lift the game pieces up to the highest holes which are seven feet tall. Additionally they must be able to load cargo into the rocket, but first the robots must patch the holes in the rocket with panels requiring them to also be able to lift the hatch panels. At the end of the game it has to be able to climb up a step that in nearly a foot and a half high. iRaiders is excited to design a robot that meets these requirements!

So as the build season begins, the robotics team is gearing up for another great season!