The Palace City Robot Rumble, held at the Corn Palace on November 4, showcased not only the thrills of competitive robotics but also the invaluable skills gained by participating teams. This tournament-style event, organized by Mitchell Robotics, brought together teams from various communities across the state of South Dakota, including Spearfish, Menno, Harrisburg, and Sioux Falls.
The competition revolved around matches where teams controlled and programmed their mobile robots to outscore their opponents. With robots resembling house pets, the teams strategically aimed to fling triangular-shaped balls into the opposing team’s net within a 10-foot diameter ring. Each game lasted two minutes, and the fast-paced action kept the spectators on the edge of their seats.
While winning the tournament held significance, the event’s greater purpose was to foster the development of crucial engineering and logical reasoning abilities. Andrew Hiles, the advisor of the Mitchell Robotics program, emphasized the importance of skill development in team sports, comparing it to the process of building robots from scratch. “They build these robots from nothing — that means hands-on skills,” Hiles stated.
In addition to the hands-on experience, the teams also showcased their design processes through comprehensive documentation in their design notebooks. Team 6844B, one of the Mitchell Robotics teams, received the prestigious Excellence Award for their exceptional performance and the quality of their design documentation. This award recognized the team’s overall excellence in both competition and the meticulous record of their design journey.
The Palace City Robot Rumble not only provided a thrilling competition but also offered students a platform to develop practical skills that are invaluable in today’s working world. By combining engineering, logical reasoning, and teamwork, participants gained hands-on experience and honed their problem-solving abilities.