RoboCats win for performance, quality

RoboCat Preston Cupler behind the controls drives their robot. Photo provided

By Áine Houston,
Student, Team 2137
Team 2137, The Oxford RoboCats from Oxford High School, won the Robotics Competition (FRC) Iron Division Skills Challenge and the Quality Award in the 2021 season.
The team has participated in the FIRST Robotics Competition for the past 15 years. This season they competed virtually in the Infinite Recharge at Home game. They submitted videos of the robot doing five specific challenge activities and delivered a virtual presentation to judges.
“I am extremely proud of our team, not only for the way the team competed in the robot challenges, but for showing grit in a season that was unprecedented,” said Craig Trombly, Teacher Adviser to the team. “Our robot was robust and had an accurate shooter that ranked amongst the best in the world” placing them 27th overall out of 1412 teams that competed globally in the skills challenges.
The pandemic affected many aspects of the team, but they still found creative ways to learn and practice new skills. During a brief shut down period where students were not able to meet in person, they developed a system to work at home by dividing the effort and passing parts from one student’s house to another.
“I think our team did extremely well, especially given the unique circumstances we were in,” said Andrew Haselton, Student Programming Captain.
Students were still able to learn and incorporate new technologies, including their first development of an advanced type of chassis called a swerve drive and new sensor programming techniques to improve the performance of the robot.
“From being able to explore new technologies to integrating those and winning our division, I think our season was extremely successful,” Haselton said.
“I think our team has significantly improved in all areas. Everyone is constantly learning and growing and through each season we not only grow in our individual areas and expertise, but we also grow closer together,” Michael Duong, Student CAD Captain.
In addition to building a robot, the team also engages in many other activities each season. The Marketing Team put together graphics and videos for promotion. The Business Team documented the impact that our team has on the community and also presented to judges for awards. Students also participated in a new Game Design Challenge competition this year where they designed their own FRC competition and presented it to judges.
For more information on FIRST Robotics go to: firstinspires.org/robotics/frc
“Although we didn’t win awards for our presentations, the judges still were impressed with us,” added Duong.
Team 2137 is an after- school club at Oxford High School. To see more about what they did this season check out their YouTube channel for videos of everything they have submitted for this year’s competition. www.youtube.com/channel/UC-IQcP5JmglppYXp1DMq1HQ

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