Branchburg, NJ (PRWEB) July 24, 2011
For the third straight year, two seventh-grade students from the Storming Robots, a robotics learning center in NJ, have been invited to represent the USA in the Robocup Junior (RCJ) World Tournament. Andrew Amerman and Salil Pathare from Bridgewater Township were selected to participate in the international competition after scoring highest in the nation to win first place in their division at the New York-New Jersey Regional event back in April 2011. The 2011 event was held in the historical city of Istanbul, Turkey from July 6th to 11th.
They competed against other young students from over 35 different countries including China, Japan, and Germany. The RoboCupJunior-Rescue game involved tasks simulating rescuing victims from natural disasters.
On the first day, they ranked in the 20s among 35 highly selective teams. On the second day, despite the more complex field, they continued to polish their algorithms and ranked 14th. They had an option to not make any modifications on the third day, but they decided to design more complex algorithms to improve on the even more complicated field. Unfortunately, they left a bug in their code that pulled down their final rank to 25th.
However, they both cannot wait to move onto the Secondary division in the 2012 and feel confident that they can improve their design. Many congratulations go to their self-initiative and perseverance to continuously challenge themselves, even without any external assistance.
Elizabeth Mabrey, the mentor, was not able to attend the event due to her additional responsibilities with Storming Robots and with students at the NJ Governor School of Engineering around the same time as the event. Thus, Andrew and Salil had to work 100% on their own.
“These two impressive youngsters have been with Storming Robots since they were 4th grade,” said Mabrey. “They have been trained to think independently and learned to be effective problem solvers. Their achievement at the event has reflected their high analytical skills and maturity to deal with unexpected challenges. I am extremely proud of them.”
“Throughout Robocup2011, I got to truly put my skills to the Test,” Andrew said. “Working with my partner, I achieved to complete a few algorithms that I never expected myself to be able to.”
Some of the other competitions and exhibitions include kids-size to adults-size humanoid robots. Also, micro-robots as small as the diameter of a human hair were on display facing off in tests of speed and agility.
They spent close to fifty hours preparing for this event. Overseas, Andrew and Salil worked in the field from 9am to 4pm for three straight days. The team once met 8am in the morning, but did not leave the arena until 6pm at night. After they returned to the hotel and caught a quick dinner, they worked on their project some more.
“RCJ truly is an extraordinary event which stands apart from other robotics programs for young students,” said Mabrey. ”The World Tournament of RCJ takes place in conjunction with RoboCup, which is attended by hundreds of research scientists and engineers from around the world. The opportunity to interface with such researchers and watching their amazing robotics apparati in action truly sparks inspiration and interests in engineering among these young children. Automating their robot to resolve problems encountered with a lot of variables in its environment is truly no small feat.”
Photos available upon request.
Storming Robots is a technology enrichment learning center dedicated to using robotics education to build students’ computational thinking skill which is extremely essential in science, technology, engineering, and math application. Through hands-on technology exploration, students strengthen analytical and strategic thinking skills and gain a lifelong appreciation for learning. Located in Branchburg, NJ, Storming Robots Technology Learning Center currently offers workshops/roboclub during the school year, competitions participation, summer RoboCamps, and more. Visit Storming Robots online at http://www.stormingrobots.com.