Underwater - November/December 2010 - (Page 38)

ROV 9th Annual MATE International Student Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Competition INDEED, THE NINETEETH CENTURY PHILOSOPHER Herbert Spencer must have been on to something when he said, “The great aim of education is not knowledge, but action.” Today’s world seems to demand a pragmatic approach to solving real-world problems with skilled and pointed actions. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is just one such example. The best and brightest were needed to solve this problem, not with theories and hypotheses, but with hands-on, theory-in-practice techniques. Since 2001, the Marine Advanced Technology Education Center (MATE) has held an annual remotely operated vehicle (ROV) competition that both develops and tests such pragmatic skill sets. As Caroline Brown, public relations officer for MATE notes, “The MATE competition helps give students the technology, piloting and teamwork skills to design, build and operate an ROV in a ‘real-world’ setting.” And you don’t get much more ‘real world’ than underwater volcanoes, which was the theme of this year’s competition. On June 24, sixty teams of students from around the world flocked to the University of Hawaii-Hilo on Hawaii’s Big Island to participate in the 9th installment of MATE’s annual competition. The Loihi seamount, an active undersea volcano rising more than 3,000 meters above the seafloor, was the center point of this year’s theme. Teams were responsible for deploying instruments, taking sensor readings, plotting data and collecting samples of geologic features and organisms surrounding the “volcano,” which, for the purposes of the competition, was the large, olympic-sized pool on the U of H campus. In addition to actual act of effectively piloting and collecting data with their hand built ROVs, the students were also judged on 38 UnderWater NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2010 the design and construction of their machine, as well as the team’s ability to communicate what they learned during the engineering process and how this knowledge was put to use in designing and building their ROV. To gauge the students’ communicative and knowledge base, oral and written engineering presentations were required to be given to a panel of judges representing the marine industry. The student competitors were sorted into two categories: Ranger, which was comprised of mostly high school teams; and, Explorer, which consisted mostly of university, community college or technical college teams. In the Ranger category, top billing went to First Flight High School, from Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina. Second place was earned by Clarenville High School from Clarenville, Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada. And third place went to Aptos High School from Aptos, California. The Institute for Marine Technolog y Problems from Vladivostok, Russia, was the first place winner in the Explorer category, making the long flight well worth the trip. Long Beach City College out of Long Beach, California, took home second place honors. And, Eastern Edge Robotics Team from St. John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada, earned third place. First place winners in the Ranger category received a trophy, Marine Technology Society memberships, $500 gift card sponsored by MTS-Houston, SumoBot Competition Kit courtesy of Parallax, Inc. and 80 feet of tether courtesy of Video Ray. Second place Rangers received a trophy, $250 gift card sponsored by Schilling Robotics, Boe-Bot Robot Kit courtesy of Parallax, Inc. and 80 feet of tether courtesy of Video Ray. Third place winners received a trophy, $150 gift card sponsored by SeaBotix and Mesmic Dual Axis Accelerometer courtesy of Parallax, Inc.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Underwater - November/December 2010

Underwater - November/December 2010
Board of Directors
President’s Message
Executive Director’s Message
Guessing Game
The Saturation Situation
Got It Covered?
9th Annual MATE International Student Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Competition
Innovator, Philanthropist, Diver, Teacher
Underwater Intervention 2011
New Gear
Advertisers Index
ADCI Member Company Listings

Underwater - November/December 2010