“Rover Ruckus” is here and Robot Play is Excellent

FTC (FIRST Tech Challenge) Nov. 3, 2018  “Rover Ruckus”

This past weekend was The FTC (FIRST Tech Challenge) first league robotics competition at Capital High School School.  The Olympia School District (OSD) had a great showing with six teams participating in this competitive event. At the end of the day, Olympia High School’s  team, 8548, “ the BarBEARians” finished in first place, North Thurston’s  Electric Sheep, 7742 placed second and Capital High school’s team 9876, “The Countdown” finished third. The Olympia School District had a great showing with three teams finishing in the top five spots.  It should be noted that the Olympia School District fielded six teams out of the total 14 teams in the FTC South Sound Lovelace league. The November 3, competition was a great showing for The Olympia School District.

This year’s challenge, “Rover Ruckus,” has robots landing on Mars by detaching and descending from the Mars Lander.  After the robots have landed on the Mars surface, they search for and pick up gold and silver minerals which need to placed into the correct storage areas on the Mars Lander.   There are two craters in which robots can find gold and silver, provided these robots can traverse the steep crater walls. During the endgame (the last 30 seconds of the match) robots latch back to on to the Mars Lander, raise themselves up and prepare for take off. So, between placing gold and silver minerals in the correct storage areas and connecting themselves onto the Lander and raising themselves up, there is a lot of action going on in these matches.

At both Capital and Olympia high schools, teams of students have designed, built  and programed a robot to detach and descend from the Mars Lander and place gold and/or silver minerals in the lander. Each match last 2 ½  actions packed minutes.. But that’s not all! Students will also give a ten minute presentation about their robot, and team activities to a panel of judges and turn in an engineering journal that includes their robot evolution, CAD designs, programming, outreach and more.  Teams that compete well, present to the judges well and have a well written engineering journal will move on to the Washington State Competition in February.

Check out this video to learn more about “Rover Ruckus!”  


On  Dec. 1, the Olympia School District robotics teams return and compete in their second league FTC competition at Capital High School.  Competition will be fierce and it will be fun. If you would like to see these exciting robots “In action!!!” Matches start at 11:00 in the Capital High School Commons.