April 23, 2012

Students Excel at Robotics Challenge

Fort Wayne, Ind. –Two Indiana Tech faculty members took teams to the National Robotics Challenge in Marion, Ohio, from April 12 to 14 and came away with awards.

Maximo Ortega, assistant professor of industrial and manufacturing engineering (IME), took two teams of Indiana Tech students from advanced computer integrated manufacturing classes. The first team consisted of traditional students Laura Bertsch, Alexandar Blomeke, Tadd Burch, Aleece Good, Ryan Moser, and Damien Perry. The team’s task in the Manufacturing Model category was to design, construct, and operate a system to simulate the manufacture of a specific object, and the team won the Gold Award.

Ortega’s second team consisted of non-traditional adult students in the College of Professional Studies: Eric Arnold, Tom Minnich, Eric Miner, Ed Redmon, David Bailey, and Tim Tilbury. Because they were unable to attend due to work commitments, their project was presented by traditional students Renee Marie Al-Bahrani and Joeb Woodring. The team’s task in the Manufacturing Robotic Work Cell Category was to design, construct, and operate a robotic system that performs one or more manufacturing processes, and the team also won the Gold Award. The desired end use of the project was to allow college recruiters to use the model as a demo unit at high school recruiting fairs to highlight the various aspects of the IME program at Indiana Tech. The team had to stay within the constraints of developing a model that was light enough to be carried by one person.

Rex Joyner, professor of physics, took 16 youths from Explorer Post 2829 to the robotics competition. The Explorer Post is sponsored by Indiana Tech and meets on campus. The group consisted mostly of high school students and had 16 entries in seven different categories. The group earned three Gold, two Silver, and two Bronze awards.

For more information on the competition, visit www.nationalroboticschallenge.org.


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