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Coronado High in 'Deep Space' for annual robotics scrimmage Feb. 16

Feb. 5, 2019
       For the fifth straight year, Coronado High will host a multi-team robotics scrimmage Saturday, Feb. 16.
       Free and open to the public, the event will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the school gymnasium, 1590 W. Fillmore St. Typically, teams from at least 15 schools or student groups from around the state take part.
       "Deep Space" is the theme for this year's game, courtesy of the nationwide private engineering organization: FIRST (For Inspiration and
In the February 2018 scrimmage in the Coronado High gym, yellow-shirted students operate 2996 (the Coronado robot). Inspired by video games, the 2018 FIRST robotics game was titled "Power Up." The 2019 robot may have a different look because of the tasks required for the "Deep Space" game.
Westside Pioneer file photo
Recognition of Science and Technology). The game is different each year, but similar in that the competition occurs in small arenas with multiple-alliance teams facing off to score as many points as possible in a timed setting.
       Coronado is the designated District 11 high school for robotics, having participated in the extracurricular endeavor since 2009. All but 4 of the 60-plus students on the team are from Coronado, according to school engineering instructor Bryce McLean, who serves as robotics faculty advisor.
       Cougars Gone Wired is the team name and 2996 the machine's numeric title, although the unit's look and functionality changes each year to match the game that FIRST comes up with.
       Deep Space simulates activities robots might perform while loading cargo into a rocket ship before a storm. “For us the biggest challenge this year has been to figure out how to get a 125-pound robot up a 19-inch step at the end of the game,” McLean said. “Many teams have decided not to even try it, so we are hoping if we can make it happen it will help separate us from the others.”
       Regarding the scrimmage, he summarized, “we invite teams from all over the state of Colorado to test out their new robots before they have to be sealed and not
A screen capture from an animated FIRST video portrays the "out-of-this-world" setting for this year's "Deep Space" robotics game.
Courtesy of firstinspires.org
touched again until the state competition. For some teams, this will be the first time they have driven their robot on a playing field, and for most it will be the only time they can compete against other robots before their first regional competition.”
       The annual scrimmage started in 2015 when members of that year's Coronado team turned carpenter to hand-build an arena. It's been remodeled annually by the students since then, as needed for each year's game.
       During the scrimmage, teams take turns practicing with their robots in the arena. Teams also are given space elsewhere in the gym for mechanical repairs or adjustments.
       Although robotics activities continue year-round - including a strong community outreach component - January-February is the time frame for robot design/construction, followed by formal competitions in March and April.
       The operation is modeled after that of a corporation, headed by a student CEO and broken out into areas of responsibility in addition to robot-building, maintenance and operation.

Westside Pioneer article
(Schools: Coronado High)

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