SIU Robotics ATMAE
SIU Robotics ATMAE is a competitive collegiate robotics team. This year, we are competing at three different competitions: The Midwestern Robotics Design Competition, Robobrawl, and The NASA Robotic Mining Competition (See below for information on these competitions). In the past, our projects have been funded by SIU Students as well as Corporate Sponsors. This year, our team set one of the highest goals we have ever set, to build and compete with seven unique robots. While our goals and expectations grew, our funding did not. We need your help to reach our funding goal so we can build the very best robots we can, and hopefully bring trophies back to Carbondale!
The SIU Robotics ATMAE chapter began in 2007 as a relatively small group of highly dedicated engineers. For years, our team only competed at one competition every year, the ATMAE National Robotics Competition. Besides the 2007 ATMAE National Competition, our team has always placed within the top three teams every year we have attended. In the early years, we saw excellent robots such as the Dawg-scalator, Derecho, Saluki Flux, and the Juggernaut, who still sits in a display case at SIUC. We have continued to have huge successes at the ATMAE National Robotics Competition, with Dusty winning second place (he was built in two weeks after a critical failure of the planned robot), first place in every single category with Dusty 2.0, and first place overall with Winston (The black and orange robot at the top of the page).
The 2015 Academic Year was the year SIU Robotics ATMAE began branching out. We competed at the Midwestern Robotics Design Competition for the very first time. We fully expected to do poorly in the competition, so we built our robot completely out of wood and spare parts to keep the cost down. Despite the lack of resources, this robot ended up taking 2nd place overall and established the "Budget Team" that competes at MRDC every year. The next year, we went on to take first place and second place at MRDC with the Senior Design Team and the Budget Team respectively, beating out six teams from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign and other large engineering schools.
The 2017 Academic Year saw our horizons broaden even more. We attended Robobrawl, a 30-pound robot combat competition for the very first time, and began a two-year build on a robot to compete at the NASA Robotic Mining Competition. We quickly learned building a battlebot is very different than building a regular robot. We did not place in Robobrawl, but we did earn something more valuable than a trophy, knowledge. With our new knowledge of how to build a battlebot, we are building a total of four robots that will compete at Robobrawl, and this time we are aiming for first!
The Midwestern Robotics Design Competition is a large, objective based Robotics Competition held by the University of Illinois in Urbana Champaign every March. Robots that compete here are restricted to fitting in a 3x3x3 foot cube, as well as a weight limit of 140 pounds. This year, there are multiple different methods of scoring, including crossing rough terrain, a Simon Says game, a Basketball Game, and a ball gathering game. Each of these objectives will reward a team with points. This year, we are sending two teams to MRDC, the budget team, who has a budget of $200, as well as an autonomous drone (which will have an 8 times score multiplier).
Robobrawl is a 30-pound robot combat competition also held by the University of Illinois in Urbana Champaign. Unlike other 30-pound robot combat competitions, Robobrawl has few restrictions on kinetic weapons, allowing for extra destruction. You may have seen the TV Show Battlebots, to which there is some similarity. The biggest difference is the robots on Battlebots weigh 250 pounds, compared to the relatively small 30 pound robots at Robobrawl. This year, we are sending four teams to Robobrawl, which are designing a pneumatic flipper robot, an actuated wedge robot, a spinner robot, and an undercutter robot.
The NASA Robotic Mining Competition is a large Objective based robotics competition held by NASA at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The competition is designed to simulate a Martian environment, where the robot needs to dig up gravel that is buried beneath a sand-like material. The gravel is then deposited into a box for scoring. Research has shown that ice is located just below the Martian surface, which gave NASA the idea that a robot could potentially collect water so Astronauts could have a large supply should there ever be a manned mission to Mars. This competition has a large number of points that are only awarded for fully autonomous entries. We are planning to enter a fully autonomous robot that utilizes a Screw Propulsion Drive for mobility. This robot has had a two-year research and development period, so we are very excited for this competition.
As you could probably imagine, we've set ourselves up to achieve more in this one year than we have for perhaps the whole history of our club. You can help us achieve our goals by helping fund our group. Not only will you be helping our team be successful, but you'll be supporting students in our mission to learn and grow. Remember that all donated funds are tax deductible.
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