Sumo robots help students

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Article Published: May. 3, 2012 | Modified: May. 3, 2012
Sumo robots help students

Students tested their computer programming and design skills during a robotic sumo competition held at Appalachian State University. The competition was just one of many events held as part of the N.C. Science Festival designed to excite students about science, technology, engineering and math.

Photo by Eric Marland

Math, computer programming and creative design are all skills needed to succeed in sumo robot competitions.

The event was one of many recently held at Appalachian State University as part of the N.C. Science Festival.

Similar to Japanese sumo wrestling, two robots, known as sumo-bots, attempt to push each other out of a four-foot arena within a three-minute time limit with the help of sensors, programming and innovative design.

Students created their sumo-bot using Lego components, motors, sensors, a microcontroller and batteries.

U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx was one of the spectators at the competition. Foxx, chairwoman of U.S. House of Representatives’ Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training, said math and science education is critical to the strength of the U.S. economy and praised N.C. Science Festival activities and Appalachian for providing for programs that support STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education.

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