Illinois Tech Robotics, Illinois Institute of Technology’s interdisciplinary robotics club, returned to compete in the 28th annual Jerry Sanders Creative Design Competition held every March at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The competition is one of the oldest continuing robotics competitions in the United States and is named after University of Illinois Alumnus and co-founder and longtime CEO of AMD, Jeremiah Sanders III.
The Illinois Tech team brought four robots: Goliath, Icarus, Modulus and Roslund, to compete. The objective of the competition was to score the most points in six minutes by placing balls into scoring bins on the course.
The course was set up with four quadrants, with each robot starting within their “home” corner. Robots had to traverse obstacles such as moats, teeter totters, tunnels and doors that covered the course in order to collect the balls they needed to score. There were three types of balls used in the competition, foam balls, wiffle balls, and golf balls. Each type has a different point value assigned to it based on how hard it is to collect and place it into the scoring bin. Foam balls and wiffle balls are scored by getting them into a rotating bin and golf balls are scored by putting them into a hole on a putting green. IIT’s highest-scoring robot during this part of the competition was Icarus, an RC car tethered to a quad copter, that made it to the semifinals.
After the main competition, a demolition competition was held where the robots demolished each other. IIT’s robot Goliath was the champion of the demolition round last year and was able to uphold it’s title at this year’s competition.