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TechTatva’16: Robotrek

When any student wants to join Mechatronics, he imagines that he’d be doing what Robotrek does every year.If you see Transformers and dream about making them, this is right down your alley. This year, Robotrek was back with three interesting events that put the participants’ bot-making skills to the test.

Robo-Pacman                                                                                                                                                                           Tejas Umesh

Robotrek’s first event, called ‘Robo-Pacman’, was a highlight on the first day of TechTatva. It brought together a popular arcade game and robotics, a combination that was bound to succeed. The participants were required to build their bots with the ability to have a pick-and-place mechanism. Some bots failed at certain instances during the event but barring the fixable errors, the participants had evidently come prepared. The grading of each participant was relative and thus completing the given objective wasn’t necessary to progress to the next round.

PC: Photography and Videography Department

PC: Photography and Videography Department

Round 2 on the other hand, started off sluggishly with almost no enthusiasm shown from the crowd. Even the managing committee was visibly tired at this point. However, things took a turn when ‘Ghost bots’ were introduced into the round. Their work was to chase the bots and stop them from completing the objective at hand. The event started getting intense because of their(Ghost bots) inclusion, and the spectacle soon drew a large crowd. The ‘Ghost bots’ weren’t the only enemy, as the ticking timer proved to be an even more  perilous villain for a majority of the participants, making them miss objectives by a second or so.

Mesh                                                                                                                                                                                      Nida Khan                                     

Somewhere in this world, robots are training to replace you in your future job. At least, that is what you would think if you attended ‘Mesh’, an event organized by Robotrek. The participating teams came up with robots that were perfectly capable of picking up the assigned load, whizzing up the mesh and delivering it to the specified location. Some of the participants built robots that not only looked fancy with their sleek bodies but also moved faster than you can say ‘exceedingly talented bots’. The humans, on the other hand, merely pushed their buttons.

Even though the event was about innovation and application, it could leave an observer feeling exhausted and incompetent. The sight of the teams strenuously working on their bots was humbling and it left a strong sense of promise of future revolutionaries in the Robotics sector.

This event was supposed to be easier compared to the other events organized by Robotrek, but the number of participants who appeared was lesser than expected. The category head, Sushrut, said that a larger number of students had participated in their previous event, Robo-Pacman. Despite the turnout, the event turned out to be an interesting one.

Vertigo                                                                                                                                                                                 Sanat Mharolkar

‘Vertigo’ was the last event under the category Robotrek. Conducted on day 3, it saw a poor turnout as compared to previous events under the category. Participants were required to make bots that would traverse over two thin planks placed at an height, while dropping crazy-balls into containers that were kept on the ground. The bots would need exceptionally good control over their motion, and a good dropping mechanism to drop the crazy-balls accurately. The event saw great performances by the bots, although there weren’t many. Unfortunately, it was a subdued end to one of the most innovative categories of TechTatva.

PC: Photography and Videography Department

PC: Photography and Videography Department