Robots battle at Ventura College

The competing team’s robots were required to enter deep space. See end of article for photo descriptions.

Article and photos by Richard Lieberman

The FIRST Robotics competition held in Ventura commenced to a sizeable crowd cheering the competitors to win the championship and head for the FIRST Robotics Championship held in Houston, Texas, April 17 – 20, 2019.

FIRST stands For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, the organization is an international organization that inspires and motivates students to participate in science, engineering and mathematics activities.

Among the participants were 13 schools from Ventura County including Conejo Valley, Fillmore, Oxnard, Santa Paula, and Ventura.

The competing team’s robots were required to enter deep space where they had two and a half minutes to prepare their ship with hatch panels and load cargo. The competition begins with a simulated sandstorm that lasts for 15 seconds where teams can drive blind or get visual feedback from cameras attached to their robots.

“It’s amazing to see what young children can do.” said Velma Lomax, who was instrumental in bringing the competition to the county, she also helps run the event. “They build these robots from the ground up. What we are watching is not just about robots but about corporate America and getting along in the world economy today.” She added.

The competition winner Team 4414, High Tide is a local Ventura based team. Industry mentored the team which is made up of participants grades 9-12 and attend classes at Buena, Foothill or Ventura High schools teaming with a manufacturing facility in Ventura. Michael Sessa owner of Sessa Manufacturing said “With the guidance of mentors, the students are designing, manufacturing parts, wiring, and programming. They also learn the importance of fundraising and participating in community outreach.”

Jalen Hsu, a Junior at Ventura High School said “For six weeks we’ve worked day and night to design, manufacture, wire, and program our robot. The experience has taught me so much about my capabilities as an individual and even more about how to work with the other brilliant members and mentors of our team.”

Local team 4414 High Tide earned Regional winner at FIRST Robotics Competition, including a second award for quality in concept and fabrication. The team also won an award for innovation in control. The award for innovation and control is based on the best overall control system, electrical or mechanical or software to provide unique machine functions.

The team named their robot Banzai with a sleek design and colorful paint job made it easy to see in the competition.

Here at the Breeze, we offer our congratulations on this well-earned win and wish our local team members great luck at the upcoming competition in Texas.

Photo: Team 4414 poses in front of their entry into the “First” robotics competition held at Ventura College. The five team members were preparing their robot entry for the first challenge. From L to Ranshul Bajaj, Anidh Bavkar, Olga Qoshilli,Phillipe Nipact, Alessandro PanighcHi.  Robots do battle at the FIRST Robotics Competition. The circuit of Life Team 3925 prepares their robot to compete in the “First Robotics Competition” competing with 42 other high school teams from all over the United States and several foreign competitors. From L to R Ashley Mach, Gabriel Bacon, Vendang Joshi, Warren Murphy, Derrick Ramirez.

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