MIT Zero Robotics presented by nautilus 4010 and tecquium

Zero Robotics is a robotics programming competition where the robots are SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold Engage and Reorient Experimental Satellites) inside the International Space Station. The competition starts online, on the MIT website, where teams program the SPHERES to solve an annual challenge.
The participants compete to win a technically challenging game by programming their strategies into the SPHERES satellites. The game is motivated by a current problem of interest to DARPA, NASA and MIT. Student software controls satellite speed, rotation, direction of travel, etc.

Student software controls satellite speed, rotation, direction of travel, etc. Depending on the game premise, the students must program their satellites to complete game objectives (navigate obstacles, pick up virtual objects, etc.) while conserving resources (fuel, charge, etc.) and staying within specified time and code-size limits.

The programs are "autonomous" - that is, the students cannot control the satellites during the test itself.

This year's challenge was to collect items (representing the satellite pieces) spread across the playing field and dropping them off inside one’s assembly zone, representing the ideal place to construct a satellite

Zero Robotics seeks to inspire the next generation of great minds by allowing them unprecedented access to space at the high school and middle school level. It hopes to provide a unique, challenging learning environment that inspires young minds to apply and sharpen their science, technology, engineering, and math skills.
With a zero cost, zero setup, web-based environment that uses the latest web technologies, Zero Robotics provides students worldwide with a testbed to carry out space experiments.

US, European Space Agency (ESA) members, Russia and Australia can participate with any number of teams, some other countries may participate in pilot programs by invitation. In 2016, more than 150 teams from 17 countries participated in the tournament.

Dr. Alvar Saenz-Otero, ZR Director, invited Mexico as a pilot program. Eight Mexican teams went through different phases of the competition. Only ITESM CCM's and Nautilus' team, Tecquium, made it to the higher part of the leaderboard, which led to an invitation to MIT for the Finals.

After an outstandig participation team Tecquium received a recognition and was interviewed by National Geographic as a part of the MIT Zero Robotics Competition coverage.

Benefits of becoming an international partner

  • Participation in the “High School Tournament” by teams from any schools in the country, at no cost to the teams themselves.
  • A special webpage within the Tournament page for the country and its sponsor.
  • Acknowledgement of participation during the Kick-Offwebcast and the ISS Finals Competition.
  • Create or strengthen the relationship with MIT, NASA, and the other ZR partners.
  • Inspire new generations of scientists and engineers.
  • Strengthen software programing skills in the country’s youth
Created By
Rolando Bautista Montesano
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