Robotics team builds up to state competition

The+team+took+home+second+place+from+the+West+Texas+hub+of+BEST%2C+qualifying+them+for+state+competition.
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Robotics team builds up to state competition

The team took home second place from the West Texas hub of BEST, qualifying them for state competition.

The team took home second place from the West Texas hub of BEST, qualifying them for state competition.

Courtesy of Robotics Team

The team took home second place from the West Texas hub of BEST, qualifying them for state competition.

Courtesy of Robotics Team

Courtesy of Robotics Team

The team took home second place from the West Texas hub of BEST, qualifying them for state competition.

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The Canyon High Robotics team is all about being the BEST.

After winning second place at the West Texas BEST (Boosting Engineering, Technology and Math) contest, the robotics team will head to the state competition for the third time. The team spent hundreds of hours brainstorming, building prototypes and testing their robot and will compete at the state competition in Dallas Nov. 28-Dec. 2. 

“Robotics is something you have to design to do a task,” robotics teacher Bill Troyer said. “It’s a combination of using all the machines and tools in the shop along with C.A.D., electronics and several other things to accomplish the task.”

Just like Jason and the Argonauts, we’re cleaning up the ocean of trash to make the world a little better.”

— Jonah Ramirez, 12

BEST robotics chose “Current Events” as the game theme, which incorporates ocean pollution, recycling and the marine ecosystem. The team designed their robot to fit within the theme.

“We chose the team name ‘Argonauts’ because of the Argonauts from Greek mythology who cleaned up the ocean by killing monsters and other sea creatures to make the world a better place,” said Jonah Ramirez, senior and Robotics Club president. “Just like Jason and the Argonauts, we’re cleaning up the ocean of trash to make the world a little better.”

The robotics team splits into groups for the engineering work, the research and notebook portion and the exhibit portion.

“We have assembled a hierarchy where we have several people at the top and we branch out into the different aspects of robotics,” Ramirez said. “We have a head engineer, a head programmer, a head of the notebook and a head of the exhibit. They are in charge of what everyone is doing in their area and everyone else has their own job within that area.”

Ramirez said the team has to work together to fix problems.

“This year we had a height limit,” Ramirez said. “That ruined the design we had for the first two weeks, and we had to completely rebuild our robot. We also have to face balance issues. We have to have people who can maneuver the robot, and if something breaks, they still have to drive it, so that’s a really big challenge.”

You don’t have to be smart–you just have to be willing to learn and work.”

— Jonah Ramirez, 12

Ramirez said the team members have developed strong personal relationships.

“It has been very fun,” Ramirez said. “Other than the stress being at a state competition has, we have a lot of great times as a team.”

Troyer said the best way to get involved with the club is to take one of his classes to learn how to use the C.A.D. program and the tools in the shop, however it is not required.

“I went into robotics not knowing how to program, but I was willing to learn and in an hour I knew how to program the robot,” Ramirez said. “You don’t have to be smart–you just have to be willing to learn and work.”

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