Mon, Mar 05, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Students’ infrared-guided bot scores NT$50,000 goal

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

Robots designed by university students on Saturday competed in a soccer game, with designs by Minghsin University of Science and Technology (MUST) students winning first and second places.

The annual competition was held at National Taiwan University (NTU) in Taipei as part of the “Smart Machinery Competition” organized by the National Applied Research Laboratories Instrument Technology Research Center and American Society of Mechanical Engineers Taiwan Division.

The competition’s theme is announced by the society in September or October every year, said Lin Pei-chun (林沛群), the division’s former secretary-general and a mechanical engineering professor at NTU.

In past games the focus was on individual performance, but the theme this year — “Robot Football: Goal!” — required students to operate their robots as a team, he said.

Machinery design skills, system integration and teamwork were all essential in gaining the upper hand in the game, he said.

After fierce competition on Saturday afternoon, two of the three teams from MUST won the first and second places, beating teams from NTU, National Cheng Kung University, National Tsing Hua University, National Chiao Tung University, National Chung Cheng University, National Taipei University of Technology and Yuan Ze University.

Team “Why So Serious,” which won a NT$50,000 prize, was made up of four sophomores, who defeated their opponents by adding an infrared device to their robot that targeted the ball and pushed it with a catapulted arm.

The team had been adjusting the robot’s mechanical and motor structures since November last year, team leader Hsu Chih-min (許智閔) said.

The “Quads,” made up of four juniors from MUST, were awarded second place and a NT$20,000 prize for a robot that used wind-propulsion to score goals.

The team joined the competition primarily because students are required to complete an independent study course every three semesters, team leader Pao Chih-yu (包智宇) said, adding that they became absorbed by refining their robot.

“MUST students are potent in machinery contests because the school puts a lot of focus on cultivating students’ practical skills,” Lin said, adding that other universities put more emphasis on theory.

The champions are to represent Taiwan at a regional game in the US and if the team wins, it qualifies for the international final, organizers said.

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