Students from the school of computing and engineering recently took part in the Colleges first ever RoboCon competition final which took place at the SPACE Campus. The talented students competed against each other for the honour of bragging rights and for their chance to win an Echo Dot and £30 worth of Amazon vouchers!
The live competition took place in front of family, friends, peers, parents and under the watchful eye of the judges.
The ROBOCON 2017 competition required the participants to compete in teams of two to design and build a bespoke robot to autonomously complete a maze and move to an arena to throw ping-pong balls into targets.
The robots had to race to complete the task within a set period of time, with the fastest and those with the most balls in the catchers, being announced as the winner! HND electronic engineering students Jordyn Martin and Luke Robinson emerged as champions in the contest with their robot Fiesty Fred who stole the show. Each took home an Echo Dot.
The competition was a great example of the benefits of project based learning with collaborative input from numerous trades and disciplines across the college including joinery who designed and built the boards, production arts and music student’s providing the entertainment and compere, and hospitality providing front of house service. Special thanks must also go to engineering intern Sam Flynn who designed the catchers.
Marks were awarded for overall quality of work produced, ability to work within the timeframes, efficient use of resources and the fastest robot to complete the circuit.
The standard of robots at the competition was excellent with many boasting innovative features such as 3D printed spoilers and air fed pneumatics design concepts.
The prize for Best Creative Design went to Joseph Armstrong and Daniel Rice from general engineering, who won the qualifying heat which took place earlier in the year.
Tutor Anthony Johnston said "The competition was great fun for the students and the standard of work produced was outstanding. We encourage students to participate in all competitions, which will enhance their skills and knowledge. The Inter Campus competition contributes to the students overall learning experience and improves their confidence, while providing them the opportunity to test their skills against their college peers.
"SERC is a fertile learning ground for innovative and dynamic students in the field of robotics and mechatronics. From conception of ideas to design and prototyping development, robot testing and final robot release the task was challenging, but gave the students the opportunity to work in teams and under pressure, to learn the skills they will need in the workplace."
Head of School Trevor Breadon said: "Competitions like this provide a unique stage for student-engineers to showcase their skills and expertise and motivates them to reach the highest standards in their careers."
SERC students are encouraged to get involved in competitions as it demonstrates to future employers the level, skill and commitment they have within their industry. Past winners have successfully progressed into employment, because they have an edge over other students, having been involved in these types of competitions.
The competition was kindly funded by the Erasmus+ programme.