DP Robotics Wins Second Regional

Photo Courtesy of Chuck Riharb Photo Courtesy of Chuck Riharb

Reprinted with the permission of the Santa Barbara News-Press - April 7, 2013 12:25 AM.

By Jordan Ecarma, News-Press Staff Writer

The Dos Pueblos robotics team won the Las Vegas Regional FIRST Robotics Competition on Saturday, its second regional win of the year.

Team 1717, also known as the D'Penguineers, shared its win with two allies: Team 3245, the Ravens of The Waterford School in Sandy, Utah; and Team 4276, Viking Robotics of Marina High School in Huntington Beach.

The 32-member Dos Pueblos team also won the Los Angeles Regional FIRST Robotics Competition last month, securing a spot in the FIRST world championships April 24-27 in St. Louis.

"I'm really proud of my team, and everyone's been working hard," said Agnetta Cleland, 17.

"It's so rewarding to be able to see something we all worked on and built together. We pictured it working, and now it's happening in real life," Agnetta said.

For this year's Ultimate Ascent game, robots climb a pyramid and shoot flying discs through a goal to garner points.

This season's robot, PenguinBotVIII, has performed well despite a few difficulties, said team member Kyle Riharb, 18.

"We had a couple of hiccups going through," he said, citing a wheel module as the main problem.

The D'Penguineers made some adjustments during the Los Angeles regional that helped them stay undefeated Saturday.

"Since the last competition, we changed how fast the shooter shoots the Frisbees, and now we're able to shoot more accurately," Mr. Riharb said.

The D'Penguineers also were recognized Saturday with an Industrial Design Award for their robot's ability to move smoothly across the competition floor and score with precision.

Dos Pueblos Engineering Academy students work toward the FIRST competitions throughout their high school careers.

"We've been watching all the other teams do it, and to finally be able to be here ourselves is worth all the learning experience that we had to go through in our classes to get here," said Mr. Riharb.

Team 1717 learned about the requirements of this yer's FIRST Robotics Competition in January, and designed, built and programmed PenguinBotVIII.

The world championship competitors are selected from more than 26,000 teams from eight countries.

Last year's Dos Pueblos team finished in the top 50 of the 402 teams that qualified for the world championships.