Welcome to exciting Season of Events
Student Robotics Club of S.A. Inc
Compulsory Safety Training
10:00 - 13:00 Sat, 4 Jan 2020
Adelaide Showground, Goodwood Rd, Wayville , SA 5034
FRC Build Season
5 Jan -14 Mar 2020
Adelaide Showground, Goodwood Rd, Wayville, SA 5034
FRC Kickoff Meeting
10:00 - 12:00 Sun, 5 Jan 2020
Adelaide Showground, Goodwood Rd, Wayville , SA 5034
10:00 - 16:00 Sun, 6 Jan 2020
Uni-SA Room JS5-12, Jeffrey Smart Building, Adelaide, SA 5000
FTC Scrimmage - Naracoorte
10:00 - 16:00 Sun, 1 Mar 2020
Naracoorte High School, Stewart Terrace, Naracoorte SA 5271
What an end to the year! The Club successfully organized and hosted two FLL competitions at Pedare and Trinity Colleges, and the inaugural FTC Challenge at Banksia Park International High School (a follow-up to the successful Scrimmage at Murray Bridge). We thank all the schools involved as well as the many volunteers that made these events possible. From the FLL competitions, we qualified both our FLL teams, East and West for the Nationals in Melbourne, from which our West team further qualified for a World tournament in Greece next year. In addition, the FTC team qualified for the Nationals in Sydney. Competitions help our students to have goals, hone their skills with a purpose and compare themselves against other teams — congratulations to all involved.
We completed our 2019 training program run on Tuesday nights, which is designed to help students build new technical skills, further develop existing ones and get to know each other in a more relaxed environment than competition builds. I thank the adult Mentors and our Alumni who contributed to a successful training season. We look forward now to the “big build”: the FRC robot, with kick-off scheduled for January 5.
Student Robotics Club of S.A, Inc
It is, with the most emphatic commendation, that I congratulate both FLL teams on their success and I can tell you, it was no cup of tea. What with the countless hours, accumulated stress, late nights, fruitless designs, unsaved programs, and other unforeseen disasters we encountered throughout the season, I’m especially proud to say the team’s perseverance and determination would bear the crowning chalice and an invitation to Greece!
It was a slow start to the season, as members joined here and there, not much progress having tread as we began to better acquaint ourselves. We were presented with what seemed to be an insurmountable task: building/programming a fully functional/autonomous robot and researching/developing a solution to a proposed problem. The majority of the initial sessions were spent brainstorming and elaborating upon potential problems present in our community, which in itself took weeks as you can imagine (certain discourse … and a tendency to jump from one idea to the next). Luckily, a vote was put forth and a consensus affirmed the problem we were to pursue: how can vegetables be grown in small spaces sustainably? Again, after weeks of research, development and prototyping, we present (drum roll …) the Hyrdoshi!!! A combination of hydroponics and bokashi composting; maximizing crop yield through the fertile bokashi liquid and reducing human effort through automation. After some refinements to our skit and prototype, our nationals project presentation went swell and was our highest scoring category.
FLL - Roboroos West
“We were presented with what seemed to be an insurmountable task: building/programming a fully functional/autonomous robot and researching/developing a solution to a proposed problem"
Its counterpart, the robot, was a game of endless snakes and ladders. Once the challenge sets were constructed and competition tables assembled, a robot needed to be made (easy, right?) Apart from the few knowledge sessions held, most of the team were newcomers to the world of robotics, but as the ball started rolling, the team as a whole became more confident, a robot was born.
The programming team were then delegated responsibility, though they weren’t the most diligent of chaps (seeing as I was included). A walkabout USB, unsaved work and confusion in program copies resulted in the aforementioned late nights and stress. The adoption of a source control system was our savior. The regionals at Golden Grove was a blast and gave an insight into what a like-minded community can do and build together. Of our three robot runs, the best was 295 points. Nationals was held at Swinburne University and was once again a brilliant experience. A best of 365 was achieved — a noticeable improvement from regionals.
It has been mentioned many times but without the extensive investment of time/energy and budding support of our mentors, Rob Zibell (robot coordinator), Fiona and Emily Mansfield (project coordinator) and parents, for all they endeavor to do for their children, it would not have been possible to come to this point if anywhere.
We were awarded the Champions Trophy (best aggregate score in all categories) at regionals and the innovation award at nationals. Placing aggregate fifth, we were invited to attend the international European competition, held at Thessaloniki, Greece.
“It always seems impossible until it’s done” — Nelson Mandela
This season RoboRoos FLL East had two new members, Marcus and Zac, and seven returning members, Sam, Jack, Derek, Chaya, Izzy, Bianca and Alan.
Working from Sam’s house again, we designed a new robot to make it smaller than last year because this year’s challenge included extra points if the robot fit in the small inspection area. The new members of the team were made to feel very welcome and helped with the robot build and programming.
The team took an excursion to the Bush Magic playground in North Adelaide to investigate the Liberty Swing and the general inclusivity of the playground. We found that the key to the swing had only been borrowed twice in a year. The team decided that it would be a good project to redesign the Liberty swing. We designed the Swaygo and SwaygoMax which were more accessible. The team shared ideas with Ms Ginny Pyatt, Deputy Principal of Modbury Special School, Isabella Vincent a child wheelchair user and went to ASC to share our robot and project with their engineers.
RoboRoos East attended the second SA Regional, at Trinity College. At the competition our first two runs didn’t go as well as we knew the robot could. In amongst the judging, that we thought went well, there was a lot of team work and stress to get the robot back on track for the last run. The last run was a lot better and saw us win the Robot Performance Award. The team were also awarded the Championship Award and made it through to the Melbourne National Competition.
“In amongst the judging, that we thought went well, there was a lot of team work and stress to get the robot back on track for the last run. The last run was a lot better and saw us win the Robot Performance Award"
FLL East - City Shaper 2019
The Melbourne competition was great fun and we all looked great in our team’s distinctive orange hardhats. The robot runs went well and the last run saw the operating being shared across quite a few of the team. We were very happy with our top run of 400 points and second place in the Programming Award. Overall the team had a wonderful experience and were happy with how we competed. We were excited and proud of RoboRoos West who are off to Greece!! We met some new friends in Melbourne too:
Of course a special thanks goes to our Mentors, Parents and of course our Coach, Sharon.
Tuesday the 17th was a hot one, but was a great opportunity for the Roos to relax and celebrate the holiday season with a Christmas Party and get to know each other better before the upcoming FRC season!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Roos!
FRC Season - 2020
As 2019, an exciting and busy year for our club, comes to a close, kick-off for the 2020 First Robotics Competition approaches. As I am sure you will agree, this exciting time of year has come around far quicker than I had anticipated, yet I cannot wait to commence this hopefully successful and enjoyable season for our team.
Particularly for any newer members, FRC build season is an incredibly busy and exciting time of year. I understand that it can at times become overwhelming and there is a lot to learn, so I encourage all members to keep asking questions if ever you don’t understand something; know that the older students are always here to help you.
This is a positive season for our club as it will be the first build in our new shed at the showgrounds. It will be a great opportunity for us to commence regular use of its exciting facilities such as the kitchen and air-conditioning system, which I am sure will be a great relief for anyone involved in previous builds. The shed’s enormous space will also benefit us this season as we have more space for a greater number of people to be engaged and contribute in the building of the robot.
With a greater focus on team organization, we will work to form a better roster for the team members at the shed to optimize and share the workload amongst all members.
It all starts on the day of kick-off, which falls on Sunday the 5th of January 2020 for us in Australia. The kick-off video will be released to YouTube ridiculously early in the morning, in which the 2020 Infinite Recharge game will firstly be launched and we will finally know what challenge we are required to build our robot to undertake. Whilst I certainly do not recommend watching this video live, I cannot say I won’t be staying up as it is broadcast.
After this exciting day, in which we will aim to gain a deeper understanding of the rules and point breakdown of this game, we will spend the first 2–3 weeks of the season firstly undertaking some important strategic analysis of the game, some design and CAD work at one of the universities as well as some early prototyping of our refined ideas at the shed.
Another notable change that will influence the progression of this season is the removal of the “bag and tag” date. This means that, unlike previous seasons, we will be able to continue working on the robot until the competition and then between competition stages. However, we will still be treating the season as a 6-week build, ensuring we have time for the software pod and drive team to have time with the robot as well as allowing us to focus on improving the final robot once it is assembled, an area we have identified as a focus for this year.
I hope everyone is as excited for this coming season as I am and ready to have a great time. We have a range of exciting new opportunities for our club this year and it should be a successful build season (if you check your emails). As was emphasized in our goal-setting training, a key purpose of being part of our FRC team is having fun, making friends and the close community we generate throughout the build. Let’s keep this in mind as we embark on this busy period for our club.
This season a group of 14 students from Roboroos competed in the club’s second year of the First Tech Challenge.
Over the past few months, the group with guidance from mentors, have managed to design, prototype, build and program a new robot dubbed “Coconut Ice” — given from the colour theme created out of 3D printed and silicone parts. After the build season, the team competed at the first ever South Australian Regional Event at the Mawson Lakes campus of the University of South Australia. Although problems with connectivity limited the robot on the field, the team, with the MAGMADROIDS — the Tenison Woods College’s team from Mt Gambier — as their alliance captain, managed to take the winning alliance award, only after a thrilling double tie breaker, which was the result of an unlikely draw in a previous round.
Out of the teams that competed on the day 8 qualified for the national competition held at the Macquarie University Campus in Sydney on 6 and 7 December, the Roboroos competed fiercely but due to technical difficulties, managed to place 37th out of 39 teams wining only 1 out of 8 games. However, during the finals, to the surprise of the team, Roboroos were picked by the Bot Builders, who were a first-year team. The semi-finals were challenging and overall, the Team’s alliance was no match for the 1st ranked teams, and were knocked out after 2 rounds, one of which the opposing team scored a staggering 100 points. During the awards ceremony, the Roboroos managed to win the Control award and 3rd place for inspirations due to their involvement in starting 12 new teams in rural schools in South Australia, including Murry Bridge and other districts. Only just missing out on a trip to the world Festival in Huston. However, these SA teams were also of merit with Karoonda Meteors and MG HS managing to collect special judges’ awards at the competition.
A special thanks to our mentors alumni and of course parents! Ready to hop into next season. Go Roos!
- Jack H.
Roboroos at world electronics forum
On the 5th and 6th of December, the Student Robotics Club of South Australia (SRCSA) was honored to run an exhibition stand at the 2019 World Electronics Forum, put on by the Electronics Industry Development Adelaide Inc. (EIDA), and to hold a plenary session with the many industry professionals present. The session, titled “The RoboRoos Talking STEM Inspiration”, was presented by students Kara (15) and Maddie (14) with alumni Jess (18) and Jack (23). These past and current students talking about the problems of the future STEM workforce and how FIRST programs run with the unique environment and training at the SRCSA could generate an increased and broader range of students engaged and pursuing STEM was a well received and enjoyed by those present. Many came to speak with the students after commenting about how they had not considered the approach of targeting students in any similar way before, and about how insightful they were on stage.
Outside on the stand, the fleet of past FRC, FLL and FTC robots was ever popular. It was very entertaining watching industry professionals be wowed and amazed at the level of robots produced by school students in such a short time, (6–8 weeks remember!). On the second day, Premier Steven Marshall and Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment paid a visit to the stand. They were impressed by the robots but more by the students explaining, and wished our teams luck for the upcoming FRC season.
To see the full talk given, check out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkrnCVeXunE “RoboRoos Talking: STEM Inspiration at the World Electronics Forum 2019”
Speakers at World Electronics Forum: Maddie, Karen, Jessica & Jack
On the 5th and 6th of January, The RoboRoos along with 6 other major electronics related groups and over 100 speakers and guests attended the World Electronics Forum (WEF) held at the Adelaide Convention Center to hear from and talk to some of the most influential electronics industry leaders from around the world. The forum held keynotes by experts from over 20 countries that covered topics ranging from engaging in STEM to complex electronics supply chains and autonomous vehicles.
During the event we had a display booth set up to promote the club and more importantly the FIRST and STEM ideas it promotes. This pit had demonstration robots from all three levels of competition with additional displays for past projects and awards.
On the second day, multiple talks from experts where run in 15–40-minute blocks, with space left in between for breaks and chats with some of the guests. During one break, we were visited by the state’s premier, Steven Marshall, and his official party, and we talked to him about the various aspects of the FIRST competitions before showing off some of our robots and getting photos. After this, we all rushed back to the stand and started spamming group chats about our “celebrity” encounter. Throughout the day, more people came to talk to us about our robots and we were asked on various occasions about whether or not what we were doing was battle bots. This, combined with the excitement of the FTC Nationals live stream lead to a full on but rewarding day.
The WEF was a great way to connect with and talk to some of the industry leaders in electronics along with having fun and plugging FIRST, STEM and The RoboRoos.
- Sam Lu
2019 - 2020 season
FIRST RISE, powered by Star Wars: Force for change!
This time around teams are “... setting out to inspire citizens of the galaxy to work together, strengthening and protecting the Force that binds us and creating a place where collaboration and collective wisdom can elevate new ideas and foster growth. Together, we RISE”.
The RoboRoos can barely wait to get stuck into next season’s games and continue growing and creating our community under this new theme!
The Club works with every sponsor and supporter to understand their motivations, expectations and desired outcomes from supporting us, and we understand the need to meet those expectations. We have a number of ways of physically and digitally recognizing support. We are happy to discuss other means of recognition (including anonymous donations) on a case by case basis.
Who are the RoboRoos?
We’re a community group, FIRST® Robotics Team and so much more—including South Australia’s first FRC team.
The team’s purpose is to excite young minds about STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), by using a common interest: Robots.
As part of this, students get real industry experience, with help and guidance from dedicated industry professionals as mentors. It circumvents the age-old circle of being unable to get a job due to lack of experience.
Part of our ethos is to maintain a gender balance, which we continue to strive for and achieve.
Contact us at: email@example.com
Hopping into engineering
Sponsors - thank you