The team “Mach 42” of Kirkland Eggemeyer and Jake Schneider received first place and will be competing at the state competition on April 12 in Houston. Also competing in the area contest were Dylan Boniface, Steven Koehne and Pedro Perez.
Each year, TCEA creates a challenge based on a real-life scenario. This years’ challenge, “Rubble Trouble,” simulated an Urban Search and Rescue such as the two Texas USAR teams that provided support to search for survivors of the World Trade Center attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
Some USAR teams use robotic platforms to help assess the layout and stability of collapsed structures, locate and deliver aid to victims, and perform tasks that might otherwise be impossible or unsafe for human or canine workers to perform.
Students choose which tasks to accomplish and the order in which to perform them.
Student teams have three runs of two minutes each to earn as many points as possible.
At the area competition the two best runs are averaged together for their score.
Eggemeyer and Schneider earned an average of 370 points, outperforming the second-place Victoria team by 130 points.
Eggemeyer and Schneider will be spending the next three months rebuilding and reprogramming their robot to earn even more points.