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Robotics Competition Coming to Montana Tech


On Saturday, November 16, 2013, Montana Tech will be the host site for a FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) Robotics Competition. FTC is designed for high-schoolers who want to compete head to head using a sports model. Teams of up to 10 students are responsible for designing, building, and programming their robots to compete on a 12’ x 12’ field in an Alliance format against other teams. Robots are built using a TETRIX® platform that is reusable from year-to-year using a variety of languages. Teams, including coaches, mentors, and volunteers, are required to develop strategy and build robots based on sound engineering principles. Awards are given for the competition as well as community outreach, design, and other real-world accomplishments.

The event will be held in the HPER complex on the Montana Tech campus. Montana Tech is one of two qualifier sites for a total of 36 teams participating in the 2013-2014 FTC Montana State Championship Tournament. The qualifying tournaments will determine eligibility to compete in the state championship event in Bozeman in January.

The high-school competitors get to:

  • • Design, build, and program robots.
  • • Apply real-world math and science concepts.
  • • Develop problem-solving, organizational, and team-building skills.
  • • Compete and cooperate in alliances at tournaments.
  • • Earn a place in the World Championship.
  • • Qualify for nearly $10 million in college scholarships.

This is the second year in a row that Montana Tech has hosted this event. The public is welcome to attend and cheer for the teams. There is no charge to attend. “We’re excited to host this event and are looking forward to meeting the teams. At present, there are 9 teams from high schools around the state signed up for this qualifier event, so we expect it to be very exciting,” noted Michele Van Dyne.

The schedule of events includes:                                                                   
Team Check-In                                                 7:00am - 9:00am
Software and Hardware Inspections            8:00am - 10:00am
Drivers Meeting                                                 10:00 am - 10:15
Qualification Rounds (Competitions Start) 10:15am - 3:00pm

For more information, please contact Dr. Michele Van Dyne, Associate Professor, Montana Tech Computer Science Department, at 406-496-4855 or Dr. Bryce Hill, Assistant Professor, Montana Tech Electrical Engineering Department, at 406-496-4752.