USP engineers vie for robot contest title
Team of eight staff, students to take part in Asia-Pacific Robot Contest 2016 in Bangkok on August 21
Ateam of students with staff members from the University of the South Pacific will be competing at an international robot contest in Bangkok, Thailand.
The university’s Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment will be participating at the Asia-Pacific Robot Contest 2016 on August 21. The theme is ‘Clean Energy Recharging the World’. ‘Game of ABU Robocon 2016’ is an international showdown of ideas. It creates awareness of efficient energy consumption and clean and renewable energy utilisation. Robocon team at USP comprises Senior Lecturer from the School of Engineering and Physics (SEP), Utkal Mehta, Assistant Lecturer Sumesh Narayan, Lab Technician Sanjay Singh and five students studying in the Bachelor of Engineering programme - Ram Singh, Peni Jitoko, Sumeet Kumar, Shyamendra Prasad and Asneet Sagar. Mr Mehta said the team’s participation aligns with a number of priority areas of USP’s Strategic Plan (2013–2018). This includes Priority Area 3 which has an objective of internationalisation of student experience and Priority Area 4. It aims to take a lead role in the region’s ICT development. He said the robot construction has been completed for the competition and students hope to demonstrate a good performance in Bangkok. As per the theme of the competition, each team has to build two robots; Eco Robot and Hybrid Robot. Eco Robot does not have an actuator to drive. It receives the driving energy from Hybrid Robot. Eco Robot has to use only one steering actuator to control its direction, to track the path containing Slopes and Hills, River, and Down Hill. Besides providing driving energy to Eco Robot, Hybrid Robot has to take the wind turbine propeller from Eco Robot and climb up the wind turbine pole in order to assemble the wind turbine.
Fiji TV has been filming a documentary on the different stages of construction of the robots by the Robocon team. This documentary is expected to be aired later in the year. Japan’s NHK TV has also conducted a full coverage to document the school’s efforts to adopt ICT solutions to the development of the Pacific region. “The documentary will help show audience around the region that USP is focusing on the use of technology and the teaching of problem solving skills in engineering,” Mehta said.
USP set to participate in international robot contest.