Friday, July 25, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Robots shooting goals? It must be the FIRST competition

By
April 13, 2010 |

Enterprise staff writer

Soccer-playing robots built by high school students competed in two days of fast-paced action at the UC Davis Pavilion earlier this month.

Citrus Circuits, the Davis team coached by Da Vinci High math teacher Steve Harvey and mentored by UCD engineering student Michael Corsetto, made it to the quarterfinals before falling to stiff competition during the event.

They were up against 37 other teams in the annual FIRST Robotics competition, which was started in 1989 by Segway inventor Dean Kamen as a way to engage high school students in the field of engineering. If the Davis team is any indication, he achieved that end.

Da Vinci senior Therese Dill just may have changed her career goals because of the competition.

ÒGrowing up, I always wanted to go into biology,Ó she said. ÒNow, I found out I really love engineering, and IÕm wondering if I want to go into that instead.Ó

Dill was one of 10 Da Vinci students on the team, joined by five students from Davis High School.

Team captain William Carson, in his third and final year on the team, said heÕs enjoyed the fast pace of the competition and the work involved in building the robot.

ÒI enjoy working with metal,Ó he said, Òcutting it and putting everything together.Ó

Team members built their robot out of materials provided by FIRST Ñ the same materials every team receives Ñ plus some of their own. Back in January, all of the teams received identical kits containing small motors, microswitches, joysticks and single-board computers. Teams then purchased and fabricated their own chassis, mechanisms and circuit boards to be used on their robots.

The resulting creations on display at UCD illustrated no end of unique features.

ÒThereÕs always a ton of variety, which is really cool,Ó Corsetto said.

Six weeks after building their robots, teams had to pack them up and ship them off to the site of their competition Ñ in this case, UCD.

It was a crazy six weeks, students said.

ÒWe worked 20 or 30 hours a week for six weeks,Ó said Davis High junior Peter Wang.

They pretty much gave up their weekends and many weekday afternoons, Harvey added. ÒWe put in as many as 300 hours getting ready for the competition.Ó

The team had to build a robot that could kick soccer balls across a 50-foot field and score in a four-foot-wide goal. For bonus points, teams could design their robots so they could hang at the end of each match on a tower in the middle of the field. The field also featured multiple obstacles, meaning the robot had to be able to go over and under them to get around.

During several matches, that proved a challenge. A number of robots attempting to cross a raised berm ended up toppling over and becoming useless for the remainder of the match. Others suffered penalties for being overly aggressive against the competition.

Competing in an alliance of three teams, Citrus Circuits dropped the first of the best of three quarterfinals matches to an opposing alliance, then had to do some quick repair work.

ÒOne of our more delicate parts came off and we have to try to get it back on,Ó Carson said as the pit crew took over and did their thing.

The team, now in its sixth year of competition, had high hopes for this year and members were disappointed when they dropped their second match in the quarterfinals.

ÒMaybe next year the team will do better,Ó said Carson, a Da Vinci senior.

Harvey, who has coached the team all six years, plans to return.

ÒIÕll do it until I burn out,Ó he said. ÒI havenÕt burned out yet.Ó

He would like to find more sponsors for the team, though Ñ they could use the money.

Other teams at the competition displayed sponsors ranging from Lockheed and Chevron to NASA and Google.

ÒWe lack those big sponsors in Davis,Ó Harvey noted.

The team was sponsored by locally based Schilling Robotics and received the bulk of their money from Da Vinci High School Ñ which contributed the $5,000 entry fee Ñ and the Da Vinci Boosters Club, which kicked in another $2,500.

ÒWithout those two, we wouldnÕt have been able to go into the competition,Ó Harvey said.

Ñ Reach Anne Ternus-Bellamy at (530) 747-8051 or aternus@davisenterprise.net. Comment on this story at www.davisenterprise.com

Comments

comments

Anne Ternus-Bellamy

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Tech Trekkers boldly go into STEM fields

    By Amy Jiang | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Decoding breast milk secrets reveals clues to lasting health

    By Pat Bailey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    California climate change policies to hit our pocketbooks

    By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A1

     
    Davis braces for six days of scorching heat

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Appeals court upholds high-speed rail route

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2, 1 Comment

    Carwash raises funds for funeral expenses

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    Unitarians will host summer camp

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Artists, photographers invited to support Yolo Basin Foundation

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    Sudwerk’s sales grow, floating on a sea of dry hop lager

    By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    Wetlands visitors will see migrating shorebirds

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6 | Gallery

    ‘Bak2Sac’ free train ride program launched

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    Explorit: Wonderful wetlands right at home

    By Lisa Justice | From Page: A8 | Gallery

    Recycle old paint cans for free

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

     
    Where your gas money goes

    By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A12

    Americans, internationals make connections

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16

     
    Can you give them a home?

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16 | Gallery

    STEAC needs donations of personal care items

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16, 1 Comment

     
    .

    Forum

    Trio disagrees on best option

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Commenting system to change

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10, 32 Comments

     
    Support these local restaurants

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Let’s get the bench repaired

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

    Predicting climate changes

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

     
    Clinton’s book is worth a read

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10, 3 Comments

    Thanks for emergency help

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    .

    Sports

    Hudson solid, Hamels better in Giants’ loss

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Petrovic, Putnam share Canadian Open lead

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Moss powers A’s past Astros

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Enriquez brilliant, but Post 77 season ends with Area 1 loss

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    The un-Armstrong? Tour ‘boss’ Nibali wins Stage 18

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    Clyde Elmore: Art in the Wild

    By Evan Arnold-Gordon | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    ‘A Most Wanted Man’: Superb espionage drama

    By Derrick Bang | From Page: A9 | Gallery

    Musicians perform at Sunday service

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A17 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    Accord’s latest model is most fuel efficient

    By Ann M. Job | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
     
    .

    Obituaries

    Mary Lita Bowen

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    James Thomas Feather

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Richard ‘Dick’ Robenalt

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Friday, July 25, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: A13

     
    .

    Real Estate Review

    Featured Listing

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER1

    Professional Services Directory

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER2

    Remax

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER3

    Sherman Home

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER4

    Tracy Harris

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER4

    Vaughan Brookshaw

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER4

    Lyon Real Estate

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER4

    Julie Leonard

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER5

    Ciana Wallace

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER6

    Melrina A Maggiora

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER7

    Joe Kaplan

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER7

    Jo Vallejo

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER8

    Karen Waggoner

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER9

    Jamie Madison

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER9

    Malek Baroody

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER10

    Carol Coder

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER11

    Diane Lardelli

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER11

    Jason Sull

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER11

    Coldwell Banker

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER12

    Coldwell Banker

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER13

    Julie Partain

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER14

    Lisa Haass

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER14

    Leslie Blevins

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER14

    Yolo FCU

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER15

    David Campos

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER16

    Heather Barnes

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER16

    Willowbank Park

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER16

    Kim Eichorn

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER17

    Dana Hawkins & Caitlin McCalla

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER18

    Dana Hawkins & Caitlin McCalla

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER18

    Susan von Geldern

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER19

    Open House Map

    By jboydston | From Page: RER19

    Chris Snow

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER19

    Travis Credit Union

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER20

    Patricia Echevarria

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER21

    Lynne Wegner

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER21

    Kim Merrel Lamb

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER21

    Martha Bernauer

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER21

    Open House Map

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER23

    F1rst Street Real Estate

    By Zack Snow | From Page: RER24