Kids battle in underwater robot scrimmage

Robots are all the rage these days, and that's especially true in the SeaPerch robotics program. Students from elementary to high school age competed to be the best in operating remote controlled vehicles under water.

SAN ANTONIO - Robots are all the rage these days, and that's especially true in the SeaPerch robotics program.

On Thursday, students ranging from elementary to high school competed to be the best in operating remote controlled vehicles in a different setting.

At the Eastside Boys and Girls Club, they don't just have boys and girls, but also robots! Not just any robots, underwater robots.

Why underwater? Because it's cooler and that's what the SeaPerch Regional Challenge Prep Camp is all about. 

"They compete with robotic students. SeaPerch students from all over the world," said United State Navy Lt. Diana Tra-Yu.

Kids were submerged in engineering feats thanks to a partnership with the U.S. Navy, Boys and Girls Club and Northeast Lakeview College.

"We train their instructors their coaches how to build a robot. They turn around and teach their students," Lt. Tra-Yu said.

It all starts right here on the local level with 45 teams vying to be the best.

One of those teams is made up of juniors, Michael, Aiden, and Channing. They're all 16, super smart, and already know their majors for college. Which are aerospace engineering, mechanical engineering, and architecture.

But they were focused on the competition and their robot called Daskugelboot. In English, they told me that means "Bullet Boat."

"They compete in two lanes. One lane is called the challenge course," Lt. Tra-Yu said.

Teams will submerge their robots and attempt to capture as many rings as they can in 15 minutes.

"The second lane they are in competition is called the obstacle course," she said.

Teams will maneuver their robot through the rings and then back the opposite direction. They are scored based on time.

How did the three boys do? 

"Our first run was not that great, but our second time was three minutes and 12 seconds so that was significantly better," they said.

Hopefully, good enough to propel them to the next level.

© 2017 KENS-TV


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