The new FLL season is upon us, how quickly a year goes by!
Last week, students and coaches had the opportunity to experience a live demonstration of FLL robotics in a workshop hosted by Project Bacephalus at Wollongong Public School. Project B are veterans of FLL and their unique insight will no doubt help our teams on their robotics journey.
In the FLL Robot Game challenge, teams must design a robot utilising an array of attachments to complete 'missions' on a map. Each mission is worth an amount of points to indicate their value.
Not many teams can attempt all the missions (there is a 2 and a half minute time limit) so it is important to choose the missions that are high value.
Mission 01 - Space Travel
This mission is difficult - the first cart operates differently to the other carts which need to be transported. It requires high precision navigation and very creative attachments if you want to score the full set of points. Most teams should be able to score the 22 initial points though.
Mission 02 - Solar Panel Array
the Solar Panel model is easy to manipulate, but how about negotiating with the other team? Being able to cooperate with the other team is essential to get the best points value from this mission, and it will really test the Core Values of the participants.
Mission 03 - 3D Printing
Ejecting the brick will already be hard because of the awkward location of this mission, but collecting and transporting the brick will be even harder to fulfil.
Mission 04 - Crater Crossing
Simply walking over the crater seems like an easy set of points until you realise that you need to navigate from east to west. The bumps may cause the robot to lose its bearings, making it a high risk for causing interruption penalties.
Mission 05 - Extraction
Extracting and collecting the samples will be difficult due to the awkward sideways arrangement of the models. Although the initial 16 points may not be too hard to get, placing the samples in the correct locations will require a lot of time and dedicated attachments.
Mission 06 - Space Station Modules
The hardest of all the challenges by far is the Space Station. The modules need to be added or removed sideways which will require utmost precision. This mission will set apart top teams from average teams.
Mission 07 - Space Walk Emergency
Another high precision challenge that only extremely talented teams should consider. Not only is the navigation awkward, but the challenge is prone to unpredictability of the loop around the model.
Mission 08 - Aerobic Exercise
The aerobic machine will require creative attachments to complete efficiently. Although it is in a difficult location to reach, once there the robot will have access to several objectives.
Mission 09 - Strength Exercise
The Strength machine is a difficult challenge. At minimum it requires a heavy robot or a very creative attachment to complete the mission.
Mission 10 - Food Production
One of the easier missions. The mission is one of the few objectives this year that could be completed by the 'beam test'.
Mission 11 - Escape Velocity
Whack! This mission is fun, straightforward and great value.
Mission 12 - Satellite Orbits
This is another good mission that can be completed even with the basic Mindstorms robot.
Mission 13 - Observatory
This mission can be completed by smart navigation, but beware the distance from base that can cause anomalies. Don't get too greedy with the points on this one!
Mission 14 - Meteoroid Deflection
The Meteoroids are a big gamble. There are lots of restrictions in place that don't allow for creative interpretation of the rules, but the pay-off could be worth it.
Mission 15 - Lander Touchdown
The difficulty combined with the distance to the mission make this another hard mission to complete consistently.