FB is an old quarry that’s been converted to a family-friendly place where people can swim, run obstacle courses, camp, hold family gatherings or just relax on a cool spring evening..
The place is a work in progress, meaning there are a few rough patches ideal for testing off-road robots. S&T’s Robot Competition
Team took their other-worldly excavator for a beach run, but struggled in the sand. That means a redesign of the power systems and more controllable wheels.
Just yards away from the robot team’s efforts the Mars Rover Design Team took their 3rd-year Rover to practice out of line-of-sight radio controlled functions. Horizon, the team’s 2015 design, sometimes moves like a hyper-caffeinated spider, so it can take a steady hand to keep it in line.
They sent it up the trail but suddenly lost the radio link, leaving the clattering machine free to go wherever the terrain would take it. “HIT THE E-STOP!!! HIT THE E STOP!!!” echoed the frantic screams as Miners took off in hot and largely unsuccessful pursuit. Had it not been for the boulder it slammed into Horizon might have plunged down a cliff face to disaster.
Damage? Minimal. Aside from a broken wheel band everything is fine.
We’re laughing about it now, but it wasn’t funny then. Especially when an angry black Great Dane suddenly charged into the fray.
But that’s a story for another day…