MT. VERNON — Members of the Mt. Vernon Township High School Robotics Club were hard at work in the school’s machine shop room Saturday, making last-minute modifications to the robot they have built for this year’s regional competition.
The club, known as the RoboRams, had only six weeks to complete their robot and the regionals take place March 14 and 15 in St. Louis. The deadline for completion was by the end of Tuesday.
The finished robot will be sealed into a bag. The bag will then be opened when the robot is presented to judges at the regional event.
MVTHS senior Kole Cralley, a team captain for the Robotics Club, said the time constraint has been the most challenging part of this year’s project. Still, he was optimistic about the upcoming regional.
“We’re pretty close to finishing the robot,” Cralley said Saturday. “We’ll be able to accomplish most of the goals that they gave us.”
The Robotics Club has been in place at MVTHS for three years. Each year, the club competes at the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology Regional at the Chaifetz Arena in St. Louis.
Roughly 40 to 50 teams take part in the March regional. Of these teams, one will be chosen to move on to the worldwide competition this April, also in St. Louis.
The MVTHS team has named its robot this year, “Magnus Robot Fighter.” The machine measures about 23 inches in depth and 32 inches wide, and has movable mechanical arms. The robot can also be made to travel by remote control.
At the regional, the robot will have to complete various tasks and the team will be judged on how well their machine performs.
The robot’s primary task this year will be to pick up a large yoga ball and place it in a catapult. The ball will then have to be sent through a goal.