2013 FRC Game – Ultimate Ascent – and Week 1 of Build Season

Last Saturday, the CANs joined 15 other teams at the local Kickoff event in north Austin for the reveal of the 2013 FIRST Robotics Competition Game – Ultimate Ascent. Our team was given the task to design and build a robot to score frisbees in goals and climb a large pyramid… if it were only that simple. Check out the game rules in the link for more details!

Team 2158 had a very successful first week of build season; our mentors are remarking that the progress we’ve made already makes them feel like it’s Week 3 – compared to our previous seasons – and not the end of Week 1. Here’s what we’ve been up to:

After the game reveal and valuable workshops at Kickoff, the team returned to Anderson High School for several hours of reading the rules together as a team. We met again on Sunday to do in depth scoring analysis and review potential game strategies. We divided into groups to brainstorm strategic match sequences and, after each group presented their match strategy, reduced these divergent strategies down to into an overall team strategy.

On Monday, each team member was asked to contribute ideas for mechanisms aligned with our overall strategy. Team members brainstormed individually, provided rapid mechanism input to the team, and then split into groups again to discuss their proposed mechanisms and provide notes for the Design Team.

Tuesday onward, the team divided into their six¬†departments to work on necessary projects while the Design Team – comprised of a few members of some of these departments and our engineering mentors – flushed out mechanism ideas, produced mock-ups, and worked on prototypes of our final design plans. Our Mechanical division assembled a drive train for testing purposes and driving practice. The Electrical division setup and wired the control system and collaborated with the Programming division to configure the CRIO and establish a basis for controlling the robot. CAD has been busy converting supplied Kit of Parts and Field elements into Solidworks compatible files in preparation for producing designed robot components and layouts. Our Strategy division created a score-countering calculating spreadsheet, initial scouting sheet drafts, and are working on building the Field elements we’ll need for testing and for Austin Robot Roundup – our end-of-build practice event in February. Finally, our Marketing/Business division has continued to work on drafts of our award submissions – Chairman’s Award, Woodie Flowers Award, and Business Plan ¬†- and a variety of spirit materials – button designs, mascot costume, and this year’s special team giveaway.

We have a busy day ahead of us and lots of tasks to complete! Best wishes to all teams as we head in to Week 2!

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