Team 254, “The Cheesy Poofs,” claimed victory in the FIRST Silicon Valley Regional Tournament, held March 31 through April 1 at the San Jose State University Event Center. The win marks the 10th consecutive victory at this event for Team 254, who joined with alliance partners Team 604: Quixilver from Leland High School, and Team 4990: Gryphon Robotics from Crystal Springs Upland School.
The two-day competition drew 60 teams, mostly from California, but also from Texas, China, and Turkey.
“The 2017 competition game, FIRST Steamworks, is played by two alliances of three teams each,” said faculty member Brad Lindemann, Team 254 moderator. “Robots compete by picking up "fuel balls" i.e., wiffle balls, from the field or filling stations, and scoring them into a simulated boiler which transfers the generated steam into the alliance's airship. Alliances earn additional points when their robots deliver plastic gears to human players, which they in turn assemble and use to power propellers on the airship. At the end of the match, human players drop hooks at the end of ropes from their airship positions in order to rescue their robots and prepare them for flight.”
Team 254's robot, Misfire, was designed and built in our on-campus Robotics lab. The six-wheel drive robot has a large expandable ball hopper, a fast ball intake, and a two-ball-wide vision targeting flywheel shooter, as well as a gear scoring mechanism in the rear of the robot.
Team 254 earned the highest rank achieved by any team in the world, as well as the world high score, which helped earn them the Quality Award at the tournament. They will next compete in the World Championships in St. Louis, April 26 through 29.
In addition to Lindemann, our robotics team is moderated by faculty members Dan Judnick, Peng Yav, Sean Monroe and Shane Liesegang, nSJ.
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) was founded in 1989 to inspire young people's interest and participation in science and technology. The not-for-profit public charity designs accessible, innovative programs that motivate young people to pursue education and career opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math, while building self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills.