Welcome back to this week’s update! A big part of robotics is making sure we have strong computer programming. There are two areas we are focused on in regards to the programming this year. First, we have been looking into building a new computer to help support our team’s programming needs. The new computer would be used for CAD (Computer-Aided Design), video editing, and general programming. Drew Labrie and Sean Lessard have been working with our team mentor, Chad Boucher, to order the key software and hardware elements needed to have a fast computer with enough computing power to serve our needs.
Recently the programming team (Owen Morris, Sean Lessard, Drew Labrie, Evan Boucher and Andrew Fay) have been doing a lot of work with coding the robot in order for it to complete the tasks required in the competition. Using a laptop computer they send commands to a small computer called RoboRIO, which is located on the robot itself. The RoboRIO allows the programmer to upload code that controls the motors and interprets information provided by sensors on the robot. The foundation for the code was created by professors at WPI (Worcester Polytechnic Institute), but the programming team must customize the code to fit our robot’s design. In order for the robot to function effectively, the build team must establish the design of the robot and the programming team develops the code to control the parts that move.
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Campbell High School’s FIRST® STEM Team 3323 has been working hard for the past week on the robot for this year’s FIRST® Robotics Competition “Power Up”. Last week we told you a little bit about the competition, this week we will introduce what our team members are doing. The build team is working hard on the mechanical and electrical aspects of the robot, engaged in planning and designing the chassis and bumpers. The programming team has begun to write the computer code for the robot’s “brain” so it can perform the tasks needed. Business has been actively working to create a new image for our team and composing essays which will be judged in the competition. Overall this team has been determined to get things done for this year’s competition and coming together as a team. Stay tuned for next week’s update on Team 3323’s build season. C
By Lauren McInernery, Camryn Wirbal, Dan Ledoux
FIRST Robotics is a “sport of the mind”, as involved students work together to build and compete with robots under the guidance of experienced mentors. Just like a regular sports team robotics has a “season”, which kicked off Saturday January 6th at SNHU. At this kickoff, after hearing speeches from FIRST founder Dean Kamen, Senator Maggie Hassan, and Governor Chris Sununu, the game the team will compete in was revealed.
Now the team is in the midst of building a robot in six weeks that can overcome the engineering challenges proposed by the current competition. For this year’s competition, the team must construct robot that is able to deliver power cubes onto a switch and/or scale to obtain ownership. Also, the robots are able to give power cubes to the human player so powerups may be activated. At the end of the match, robots have the opportunity to climb, “defeat the boss”, and win the match! Throughout the six weeks of the “build season”, the engineering skills of the students are being constantly challenged, making FIRST Robotics the closest a high school student can get to real world engineering.
All of the team’s hard work will be put to the test on March 2th during a regional competition at Windham High School against 37 teams from New Hampshire as well as other surrounding states. Be looking for more updates as the season progresses!