WATERTOWN — The 2020 FIRST Robotics Competition season has begun and the FIRST Infinite Recharge theme, sponsored by Lucasfilm Ltd., was revealed on Saturday, January 4 through a Twitch live broadcast to high school students and robotics teams around the world. Watertown High School Robotics Team 237’s students, alumni and mentors gathered to watch the video presentation of this year’s game and review the rules.
Teams were shown the FIRST Infinite Recharge game field and challenge details for the first time. They also received a Kit of Parts, including motors, batteries, control system components, construction materials and a mix of additional automation components.
This year’s game shows alliances of three robots which compete against each other. Following a 15 second autonomous period, alliances earn points by scoring yellow balls into one of three different goals.
Teams also interact with a spinning control wheel to earn points. At the end of the match robots can lift themselves onto a free tilting bar, earning extra points for getting the bar to level out. The alliance with the most points at the end of the match wins.
Watertown High School’s FIRST Robotics Team 237 is entering its 22nd competition season.
Working with adult mentors, the students have six weeks to design, build, program and test their robots to meet this season’s engineering challenge.
Once the robots are built, WHS students will participate in two district events including the Waterbury Competition on March 7 and 8 at Wilby High School and the Western New England University Competition on March 21 and 22 in Springfield, Mass.
The robot’s performance at these events will determine if the team qualifies for the New England Championships.
For the last two years, Team 237 has been invited to compete at the First World Championship in Detroit, Mich.
To support the team’s building and travel expenses, the team will host its 22nd annual pancake breakfast fundraiser from 8 a.m. to noon Sunday, January 19 at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7330, 85 Davis St., Oakville.
The community breakfast will include pancakes, sausage, coffee, tea and juice. The high school robotics team will wait on tables and provide guests with information about FIRST Robotics.
Tickets are $8 for adults or $7 for pre-sold tickets; $6 for seniors, 65 and older; $5 for children between the ages of three and 10 and children younger than three are free. Tickets will be sold at the door.
Participants may bring a non-perishable food item to benefit the Watertown Food Bank.
Those seeking additional information may contact John Vergauwen at 203-206-6120 or email Team237@gmail.com.
Those interested in the team’s progress may visit Twitter and Facebook at @Team237 or www.Team237.com.