Project NEO Robotics 2014 - 2015
It is hard to express the appreciation Project NEO Robotics feels for those companies and individuals who sponsor and support us. Without you, this group would not exist.
Project NEO FRC Team 1164
The 2014 - 2015 year has been a year which has seen exponential grow in the FIRST, For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, community in Las Cruces and Southern New Mexico.
Last school year, Project NEO Robotics helped Las Cruces Public Schools to procure two grants from the state of New Mexico. These grants were used to purchase three LEGO NXT Mindstorms kits and one laptop for each elementary and middle school in the school district. The high school FRC, FIRST Robotics Competition, Team 1164, taught 45 teachers how to build and program the Mindstorms robots as part of the educator's Professional Development.
Building a FIRST LEGO League
FLL World Class
Fall 2014 was the beginning of the fruition of the grants and our sponsors largesse. Project NEO Robotics helped the school district form 26 FIRST LEGO League, FLL, teams in the elementary and middle schools. Some of these teams were formed as afterschool programs and some were part of the classroom. Project NEO either paid for or helped pay for all 26 teams to procure FLL registration and competition fees. A few FRC team members also started a FLL team at their church.
During the weeks leading to the FLL competition, the high school team not only coached their own three teams, they also had weekly opportunities for any of the other teams to receive help.
Las Cruces FLL NM Qualifier 2014
On November 22, Project NEO Robotics and Las Cruces Public Schools hosted at Oñate High School, the 1st New Mexico FLL Las Cruces Qualifier called "World Class", one of five new FLL Qualifiers in New Mexico. Thirty-two teams from Las Cruces were registered to attend. The 32 teams were comprised of the 26 new LCPS FLL teams, 2 existing LCPS FLL teams, a church team, and 3 Project NEO house teams.
An FLL competition is not just about building and programming a LEGO robot. Besides the robot game, the teams are also judged on three additional items: Core Values, which tests how well the team functions together; Project, which is a team presentation on how to solve the competition theme question; and Robot, which judges how well the team has built and programmed the robot.The FLL competition not only introduced the elementary and middle schools to the FIRST program, but about 100 volunteers also got to experience the "Sport for the Mind."
FIRST Robotics Competition 2015 - Recycle Rush
On January 4 the FIRST Robotics Competition kicked off Recycle Rush. Recycle Rush is the 12th FRC competition in which Project NEO has competed. Once the challenge is released to the almost 2800 teams worldwide, there is six weeks to design, build, program, and test a robot.
Recycle Rush Build Season
A Build Season is not just about building a robot. It is about brainstorming, designing, programming, building, testing, and rebuilding. It is about marketing and presentations. It is about graphic arts, web design, and videography. It is about project management and trying to learn how to design and build a robot on an extremely short schedule with a very restricted budget.
It is about building a TEAM!
Vertigo was designed to pick up, stack, and move storage crates in a confined area.
It was designed using Autodesk Inventor, a 3D CAD software.
It has a 6 wheeled, belt driven chassis with a 2 speed transmission.
Vertigo is equipped with multiple sensors to keep it driving smoothly and to know the position of the lifting arm.
Hub City Regional 2015
Project NEO competed in the Hub City FRC Regional Competition in Lubbock, Texas on March 26 - 28. This is the team's second year to compete in Lubbock.
Our Boeing sponsors started a rookie FRC team in Alamogordo this year. The Thunderdogs and Project NEO have been collaboratively working together. They attended our Kick-off event in January and our team answered many questions and built a part for them as they did not have the tools needed. We also shared a bus to Lubbock and stayed in the same hotel. The best part was the Thunderdogs won the Rookie Inspiration Award which is given to an up and coming first year team.
And the program continues
The team had been home from Lubbock less than a week when they were once again out talking about STEM opportunities. This time it was at STEM Fest 2015. An event held at the Las Cruces Convention Center to highlight STEM activities in Las Cruces. About 1000 people were in attendance.
Stem Fest 2015
Not happy with the robot's performance in Lubbock, the students have already planned to spend the summer in hands-on training. Their plans include reprogramming a robot from a previous year, rebuilding Vertigo's lifting arm, training more students on how to drive the robot, and some summer outreach programs. Beginning in June, the team will be meeting twice a week.