Aug 082010

Team 980 built a “stand-alone” t-shirt cannon designed to be easily mounted onto a robot chassis for demonstration and outreach events. Starting just after our return from IRI, an air-powered cannon was designed, built and tested in less than two weeks. Several Team 980 students, particularly Joey, Galina, Aaron, Alex, Alejandro, Bruno, and Laura worked with mentors David Toyne, Gerry O’Rourke, AJ Yeckel and David Brinza on the cannon at the Neighbors Empowering Youth (NEY) Lincoln Ave facility on Saturdays and a few weekday evenings.

Our t-shirt cannon was mounted to Team 2404?s Breakaway robot and was a big hit at the Los Angeles Sparks “City of Pasadena Night” event on August 4 at Staples Center. The crowd was awestruck by the height of the t-shirts fired from the cannon. The event was an exciting and successful demonstration of the NEY robotics program.

Team 980 t-shirt cannon on FRC 2404 robot ready for action at Staples Center.

Erik Dreyer (Pasadena Education Foundation, Robotics Program Coordinator) posted a video of the t-shirt cannon firing four shirts into the Staples Center crowd in less than a minute:

Aug 072010

Team 980 competed in it’s seventh IRI event on July 16-17. We faced very stiff competition from the field of 78 top-notch FIRST Robotics Competition team. Except for a radio failure in our first match, our robot and drive team performed quite well in our matches. In the end, we were among 45 other teams that did not compete in the elimination round.

Travis Cox and Matt Goldstein carry our robot from field after another intense match at IRI.

Another California team, the BeachBots (Team 330), finished as top-seed in the competition. After a four-hour marathon elimination round, the BeachBots went on to win IRI with a very strong alliance, including Teams 469 (Michigan), 359 (Hawaii) and 399 (Lancaster, CA).

Team 980 member Laura Toyne received a standing ovation for her original song performance at the IRI Talent Show on Friday night. Our trip to IRI was again an exciting and rewarding adventure!

Right after Team 980 returned from IRI, we started work on a t-shirt cannon to be used a robot demonstrations and promotional events. Our cannon will be featured at the Los Angeles Sparks “City of Pasadena Night” event at Staples Center on August 4!