District 212 Engineering Club participates in Robot Rumble
Members of District 212's Engineering Club participated in the Robot Rumble competition held recently at Prospect High School. Club members from each of Leyden's campuses built a robot and participated in the event.
The purpose of the competition is to give future engineering and manufacturing students experience in both disciplines.
"Students learn about computer-aided design, electronics, 3-D printing, soldering, welding, and other metal working tools," says Bryan Burcham, an East campus industrial technology teacher and club co-sponsor.
West campus physics teacher and club co-sponsor Todd Veltman says members from each campus constructed a robot -- 'Illumitoddi' at West and 'Edwin' at East. There were a few restrictions, he notes, including "for weight, 100 pounds with the batteries, and no flames and no electrical pulses. All weapons needed safeties, all electronic controls needed to return to fail safe positions in the absence of a signal. Other than that, they were allowed to be as creative as possible."
The robots are designed "to inflict as much damage as possible to another robot, while being as easy to fix as possible. A big part of this competition is to be able to repair the robot after it has been damaged by another fighting robot," Veltman says.
As for the rumble, East senior Kirsten Polen, says she and her teammates enjoyed seeing the other teams' robots.
"From sharing strategies, to giving advice and relating to each other in our building experiences, it was fun to interact with the kids from other schools," says Polen, who has been a club member for three years.
"Seeing how our robot progressed from a few motors and pile of metal, into an actual robot that could move around and fight, was very gratifying. It was exciting to finally test Edwin after building for months."
"The students learned so much from this experience," Veltman says. "This was the first time that most of them designed and built such a complicated machine from start to finish. That took not only technical know-how, but also teamwork, communication skills and effort. The students were excited and proud about making their robot."
"What I enjoy most about the club is meeting after school and collaborating with other members on building the robot," says Isaac Pedroza, a senior at West Leyden. "I socialized with the team, but at the same time we were building a robot. There are several things to consider when building a robot, most of which was very new to me. But I did whatever I could to learn as much as I could from my peers and the trusty internet."
The members of Leyden's Engineering Club are Jimmy Bui, Joseph Campeotto, Nicholas Campeotto, Sofia Doroshenko, Tan Le, Samson Lewerenz, Jennifer Lopez, Alex Maciel, Carolina Meza, Oscar Meza, Sean Mitchell, Edgar Montecillo, Marcos Montero, Isaac Pedroza, Kirsten Polen, Osbaldo Porrua, Oscar Rios, Evelyn Rivas, Andre Rodriguez, Jorge Sandoval, Diane Santos, Gabrielle Sarmiento and Dominick Skorynko.
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