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Good Luck Robotics Team

Calico Rock Robotics Event

(Pictured are Nicole Freeman and Draton Owens collecting orders for Thanksgiving Pumpkin Pies)

The Calico Rock Robotics team is headed to Harrison, Arkansas October 19 for the annual B.E.S.T. Robotics Competition. This year’s course is designed to represent the spinning ocean gyres, found worldwide, that are filled with plastic pollution. The North Pacific Gyre is home to what has been called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a massive island of floating debris, mostly plastic, that the gyre stirs like a giant pot of trashy soup. Our team was shocked to learn that this gyre has an estimated area of twice the size of Texas! This competition is just a game but the pollution in our oceans is not. We hope that this year’s game will raise awareness of these facts.

The game’s primary objective is to rid the ocean gyres of the pollution within. The pollution consists of various sizes of plastic water bottles, tin cans, and micro-plastics (plastic golf balls). Another important objective is to capture sea turtles so we can determine what sort of pollution they have been eating. In addition to collecting trash and saving sea turtles, we need to communicate with the other teams to establish the direction of the swirling currents. Lastly, the collected garbage will be transformed into artificial reefs to aid in healing the planet’s oceans.

In addition to building a robot the team has put together a marketing presentation, an informational booth, and an engineering notebook. The team’s engineering notebook will be judged on Thursday and their marketing presentation will be judged on Friday. The big robotics event will take place on Saturday morning at 9:00 am in the gym at Northark’s South Campus,  1515 Pioneer Dr, Harrison, AR 72601. The event is FREE and everyone is invited.

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