A group of seven youngsters from Mumbai will be representing India at a robotics championship in Washington D.C.
From opening tiny toy cars as kids to building a robot from scratch on their own, these young boys from the city have come a long way. A team of seven boys will be representing India at what is touted to be the Olympics of robotics – The First Global Challenge. The kids will travel to Washington D.C on July 16 and will be competing with teams from 160 nations across the globe.
Working on the principles of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the kids have designed a robot which will be competing to play a game based on the theme of offering access to clean water.
The only team to be representing India — the boys met at the creative technology workshop in 2009. Seventeen-year-old Aadiv Shah, an aspiring engineer shares what the challenge entails, “We had to build a robot from the parts provided in a kit. We will be playing six matches against various teams; these matches will test our robot on the basis of its strength, navigation and mechanics etc,” he reveals. The team has named their robot Neutrino — based on one of the fastest and most energetic particle in physics. The challenges in the competition include working together with students from other countries.
These robots needs to accomplish engineering tasks such as storing potable water, filtering contaminated water, and procuring new water sources (on a thematic play field), elaborates 17-year-old Tejas Ramdas. He says, “Pollutants in the water will need to be separated and clean water will need to be brought to each team’s reservoir within the allotted time. There will also be a group task at the end of each round where all the teams will work together to accomplish a common goal.”
The team designed the robot irtually before they put all the parts together, “We built the virtual model using CAD, a computer-aided design software. We were aware of the problems we could face on the ground. We stimulated the robot virtually and then visualised the areas it would crack up. This certainly helped,” says 16-year-old Vatsin Suchak.
The team started constructing the bot in June and had to face a bunch of challenges as well. “We were supposed to make the robot using the parts provided by the organisers and we realised that there was limited scope for us to build the containers, there was no flat surface to build the walls and we have designed it an unconventional way. It’s going to be a great learning experience for the team,” shares the driver of the robot, Raghav Ringshia.