Fri. Dec 1st, 2023
    The South Dade Robotics Program: Fostering Innovation and Collaboration

    The South Dade Senior High School Robotics program recently showcased its talent by hosting the exhilarating Pirates Pillage event. Drawing 21 teams from as far north as Daytona Beach, this First Robotics competition was a testament to the dedication and skill of South Dade’s Buccaneer Robotics teams.

    The participating robots faced a series of challenges, including the task of picking up traffic cones and cubes, as well as filling up a grid with link pieces. Their ultimate goal was to balance three robots on a platform, akin to a seesaw. In an exciting 15-second autonomous period, the robots demonstrated their ability to score points and find balance on the platform.

    Under the guidance of Shawn Waring, an esteemed Robotics teacher at South Dade, the event was a resounding success. With approximately 1,000 attendees, it was a remarkable opportunity to bring high-level robotics competition to the local community in Homestead. Taking over the cafeteria and gymnasium, the event showcased the students’ hard work and fostered a sense of pride among the participants.

    While the South Dade varsity team secured an impressive second place in the competition, it was their journey that truly captivated the students. Countless hours were dedicated to designing, building, coding, and perfecting the two First Robots, each weighing in at 100 pounds. The teams honed their driving skills on a basketball court-sized field, working in tandem with their two drivers who relied on effective communication.

    The students utilized JAVA programming language to code and employed CAD software, namely Solidworks, to manufacture robot components. Through careful analysis of the game rules and strategic development, the South Dade teams successfully optimized the performance of their robots in each match.

    Reflecting on the experience, Jorge Perez, the lead driver and coder for Buccaneer Robotics, described the competition as a rollercoaster of emotions, with triumphs and setbacks. Fellow team member Roberto Morera emphasized the friendly and supportive atmosphere, where everyone came together not only to compete but to create lasting memories.

    Looking ahead, South Dade eagerly anticipates hosting the upcoming Jingle Box competition, featuring VEX robots. Set to take place in December, this competition will showcase smaller robots on a 12-foot field. With a highly dedicated group of students, the South Dade Robotics program continues to pave the way for innovation and collaboration in the field of robotics.


    What is the South Dade Robotics program?

    The South Dade Robotics program is a leading program at South Dade Senior High School that teaches students the fundamentals of robotics through hands-on experience and competitions.

    How did the South Dade teams perform in the Pirates Pillage competition?

    Both South Dade teams, the varsity and the freshman team known as Buccaneer Robotics, qualified for the finals and showcased impressive performances throughout the event.

    What challenges did the robots face in the competition?

    The robots had to pick up traffic cones and cubes, fill a grid with link pieces, and balance three robots on a platform. They also had a 15-second autonomous period to score points and find balance on the platform.

    What programming language and software did the students use?

    The students utilized JAVA programming language to code their robots and employed CAD software called Solidworks to design and manufacture robot components.

    What future event is South Dade planning to host?

    South Dade will be hosting the Jingle Box competition in December, featuring VEX robots on a 12-foot field.