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Our 3rd Year

Elevation / Face Off

2008 - 2009

GAME: Elevation (VRC) and Face Off (FTC)

CLUB NICKNAME: Exothermic Robotics Club

CLUB SLOGAN: It was on fire when we got here

UNOFFICIAL SLOGAN: "stop STOP STOP!" (Anyone who has worked with competition robots doesn't need this explained)

TEAM NUMBERS: FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC)teams 417, 418, 575, and VEX Robotics Competition (VRC)teams 417, 418, 419, 420, 575, and 1899

TEAM LOGO: Bright neon yellow shirts with a cartoon robot and a lot of flames.

CLUB OFFICERS: President, Micah Z; Vice President for VRC, Paul C; Vice President for FTC, Zach L; Chief Scout, John D.

We competed in 5 regional competitions this year: the Washington and Vancouver FTC Championships, the West Vancouver VRC, the Gladstone Open VRC event, and the Washington VRC event. This year, we bought a complete field, including control electronics, and bought/built complete game components sets for both VRC and FTC.

This season, our sponsors included:

  • LexisNexis Applied Discovery
  • Redmond High School PTSA
  • Brick Journal
  • Parents of Post 2036
  • Microsoft Employees

FTC Team 417, A SECRet: This team built a large capacity, dual-sided feeding, scissors-lift dumper, designed to dump up to three trays of pucks into a hopper and then empty them into the center goal. While rookies to FTC, they were experienced FLL robot-builders and they took to medium-sized robots like ducks to a pond. Their robot was a fierce scoring machine that could run and block, too. The members of this team were team leader Zach L, Eric H, Andrew F, Anders B, Jill S, Mike W, and Sam D.

  • Awards:
    • Vancouver, BC, FTC Tournament: Tournament Finalist, Innovate Award, Alliance Captain
    • Washington State FTC Tournament: Tournament Finalist, Build Award, Alliance Captain

FTC Team 418: This team built two unusual robots. For the first cancelled Washington tournament they built a walking robot, and for the second try at the Washington event, they built a very fast, very small robot called the Mousebot. Unfortunately, the high speed combined with the small chassis produced a robot that was almost impossible to control and the robot didn’t do well in competition. Both of these robots were done more for the fun of it than to be competitive, and the members of this team also worked on other robots. Key members of this migrant team were team leader Walker L, Zach L, and Eric H.

FTC Team 575, Team Camelids: This team was comprised of Micah, David, Hailey, Preetum, and Paul. Members Elijah and Hailey joined in mid-season to work on the robot. FTC 575 only competed at the first cancelled Washington event and the “makeover” event in February. Their simple front-loader robot did well enough to team up with 417 and go all the way to the finals. Due to intense time pressures getting their VRC robot done for the Gladstone Open the next week, final development and autonomous software for this robot were not quite done by the time of the event, or they could have done better.

  • Awards: Washington State FTC Tournament: Tournament Finalist

VRC Team 417, Team Salsa, Robot Cube Dude: Team 417 was an all-girls team, and consisted of Raluca, Maya, Tara, Quinn, and Ruchi. Their mentor was Pete Saxby, and they were all rookies. Working with Mr. Reynolds, they built a sophisticated 2-joint arm that was the first of our Elevation robots to reliably score two goals in auto. Members of this team were Quinn T, Maya B, team captain Raluca I, Tara B and Ruchi. After struggling at both of the Vancouver tournaments, never quite getting the hang of their complex arm, this team won the Programming Skills Champion Award in Redmond, earning a position at Worlds, where they competed with a brand-new robot. They went 1-5 in qualifying at the tournament, having some tough luck.

Their robot was the fastest on the team, and possibly the fastest of all 261 robots at the tournament. Their robot at Worlds: 12" long, 14" wide, four wheels, six-motor drive, 2.75" solid and omniwheels, dual tank-track belts, twin towers, arm lift 60:12, drive 48:15. Weighed 3.5kg or 7.8 pounds.

  • Awards:
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Programming Skills Challenge Winner

VRC Team 418, Team Eye, Robot Retina: Exothermic Eye competed with a large, complex robot for their first two tournaments. Having dealt with a variety of challenges getting this robot to work properly, they took it apart seven days before the upcoming Redmond tournament and built a new robot for the tourney, where they excelled. They were the captain of the Tournament Champion Award alliance, and won the Amaze Award and the Robot Skills Championship, for a double-qualification to World Championships. This team consisted of Tyler N, leader Javid H, Ashoat T, Jonathan S, Rishi G, Sean F, Alex V, and Josh O. Their robot from Redmond went on to World Championships largely unchanged, where they had a great tournament. They went 5-1 in qualifying and went on to be an alliance captain. With only one person returning from last year and the rest rookies, this team had a fine season.

  • Awards:
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Tournament Winner
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Alliance Captain
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Amaze Award
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Robot Skills Challenge Winner
    • VRC World Championships, Dallas: Technology Division Finalist
    • VRC World Championships, Dallas: Alliance Captain
    • VRC World Championships, Dallas: Winner of Third Place Trophy
    • VRC World Championships, Dallas: Top 10 in Robot Skills Challenge with a score of 54

VRC Team 419, Team Moving Stairs, Robot Otis HYPE: Their robot did well at West Vancouver in December, going into the elimination rounds. This team won a Tournament Finalist Award at the Gladstone Open tournament in February, after going undefeated in qualifying. They went on to win a Tournament Champion Award at Redmond in March, teaming up with 418 to earn our club’s first tournament win. An all-rookie team, they made major changes in their robot for each competition. Their world championships robot only looked a little like the one that was on the first place alliance at Redmond. This team consisted of John D, Josh G, Kevin B, Mercury H, Tommy C, Taylor G, Walker L, and Hailey A. They competed at the World Championships, where they went 2-4, including two tough matches where opposing robots pulled out some of their control cables.

Their robot, as seen at Worlds, looked like this: Four wheels, two 4" omnis, two 4" regular, short wheelbase, six-motor drive, 11 pounds.

  • Awards:
    • Gladstone Open VRC, Vancouver, BC: Tournament Finalist
    • Gladstone Open VRC, Vancouver, BC: Alliance Captain
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Tournament Winner Robot

VRC Team 420, Team Secret, Robot A Secret: Team 420 was made up of our FTC team 417, who decided to build a VRC robot just three weeks before the Redmond tournament, and worked hard to get their robot done in time. It was fast and effective – and very, very small. It was called “Mousebot.” They built a new robot for the World Championships, using a flat 4-bar-link lifting a dual-tank tread cube gripper to reach all the goals. Spectators thought it looked like a snake striking out the grass. They could do any of the scoring moves the game required, including sucking cubes from the autoloaders. They went 3-3 in qualifying and were selected for an eliminations alliance where they went to the quarterfinals.

VRC Team 575, Team Haiku, Robot Haiku: This was our “senior team” (even though none of them are seniors this year) because they are our most experienced Vex team. They made continuous improvements to their robot after Gladstone, and added at least 20 pounds of software before VRC Worlds. This team consisted of their leader David T, and the rest of the members: Paul C, Ranjan P, Preetum N, Micah Z, Ben W, Arjun N, and Gary M. At Worlds, they had a tough schedule and only went 2-4 in qualifying. They were selected for an eliminations alliance and lost in the quarterfinals.

Robot (as seen at Worlds): 12" long, 12" wide, four wheels, six-motor drive, 2.75" solid and omniwheels, dual tank-track belts, twin towers, arm lift 84:12, drive 36:12. Weighed 3.725 kg or 8.2 pounds.

  • Awards:
    • Vancouver BC VRC Tournament: Amaze Award
    • Gladstone Open VRC, Vancouver, BC: Excellence Award
    • Gladstone Open VRC, Vancouver, BC: Tournament Finalist
    • Gladstone Open VRC, Vancouver, BC: Programming Skills Challenge Winner
    • Gladstone Open VRC, Vancouver, BC: Sportsmanship Award Winner
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Tournament Finalist
    • Washington VRC Tournament, Redmond: Support Award
    • VRC World Championships: Think Award Winner
    • VRC World Championships: Second Place Programming Skills Challenge (score of 37 was the highest at Worlds, score of 58 points in the Robot Skills Challenge)
    • VRC World Championships: Science Division Quarterfinalist

VRC Team 1899, Saints Robotics, Robot TrashBot: In the middle of the season, Exothermic Robotics visited FRC team 1899 just before they shipped their big robot. Some of the members of 1899 got curious about our Vex robots, and ended up joining Exothermics and starting VRC team 1899. Team members were Dennis L, Franklin S, Eric S, and leader Edward J. They competed successfully at the Redmond event with a simple track-lifting robot, and then built a novel holonomic drive robot for the Vex World Championships. They were very successful at worlds, racking up a record of 5-1-0 and going on to be an alliance captain in the Eliminations. A very impressive result for a team with a total of 10 weeks of Vex experience.

Their robot (as seen at Worlds): Four 4" omni wheels, holonomic drive on a square chassis, four-motor drive, 3.5 kg or 7.8 pounds

All six of our robots competed at the Vex Worlds. Two of our three FTC robots competed in regional finals matches. Thirty-four students and fourteen adults traveled to Dallas for the Vex Worlds Of our forty students, only eight are graduating this year.

The technical mentors were Rick Tyler, Bruce Reynolds, Chris Culler and Haji Habibi. Non-engineering mentors included Heidi Lovett, Carolyn Davids, Jean, Shannon Nagamine, and Melinda Tyler.