Robot and Game Strategy/Design

At Kick-Off in January, brainstorming, game strategy, and functional specifications for the robot begins. The team will then make mock parts for proof of concept. All members will be responsible for following FIRST® rules as to parts, design specifications and game rules. Designated individuals may be responsible for communicating rule updates issued by FIRST.

Mechanical Team

Responsible for prototyping, assembly and testing the robot.

Includes the following:

Drive train - including drive motors, gears and wheels

Pneumatics - including compressors, cylinders, storage tanks, valves, and tubing

Special devices unique to the game, such as ball gathering or stacking equipment

Finding the center of gravity of the robot, paying attention to all of all materials used by each group so that it complies with game weights regulations.

Responsible for designing and building the appendage - including motors, cylinders and any other devices that are unique to the current year’s game.

CAD Team

Responsible for designing the robot on the computer. Using prototypes built by the mechanical group, the CAD (Computer Aided Design) group draws specs for the robot. These plans then travel to the fabrication group to manufacture parts which the mechanical team will then use to build the robot.

Includes the following:

Design drive train and sub-systems ie. Pick-up, shooter, hanger, etc.

Provide fabrication group with drawings

Create changes in CAD as the mechanical group needs them

Maintain the teams designs on the computer

Fabrication Team

Responsible for manufacturing customized parts for the robot and/or other pieces of equipment by using the machine shop and its equipment.

Includes the following:

Welding, Lathes, Saws, Drill Press, Metal Shear/Bender

Working with CAD on 3D printing and CNC machines

Organization and inventory of tools plus communicating ordering needs to lead mentors.

Electrical Team

Responsible for wiring all motors, compressors, victors, solenoids, etc. Furthermore, the wires shall be labeled and neatly arranged for ease of maintenance. Board layout and packaging must be worked out with the Mechanical group.

Includes the following:

Designs the board layout

Wires all systems

Available for repairs at competitions

Programming Team

Uses software provided by FIRST to create a program that allows the robot to perform various tasks and functions – both autonomously and by human control. This group builds the interface between the controls and the robot, with input and agreement between the users who will be interacting with the controls and the mentors.

Includes the following:

Writes the code for robot function

Communicates the designed codes and functions to the robot drivers

Available for troubleshooting code at competition

Scouting Team

Comprised of pit scouts and game scouts. Students in this group will develop materials and methods to assess the competition giving our team as much advantage as possible. They will develop a spreadsheet and create a phone app prior to competition and revise it as necessary. The collection of data and analysis of the information will assist our team in all phases of the competition. At the competition, this group will make suggestions to the team members on Friday evening as to which teams will make good partners in the elimination rounds and why. During competition, additional Team members will be assigned scouting duties.

Safety Team

Responsible for reading and ensuring all safety rules are being followed. These rules include but are not limited to the build site rules, school rules and FIRST® rules. They also track student machine certification, attend safety captain meetings at competitions, and maintain first aid kits for supplies and expiration dates.

They also maintain demarcation of safety zones for food and safety wear in the engineering wing of the school.

Business, Outreach & Awards Team (BOAT)

The BOAT is responsible for team strategy and operations that fall outside the building of the robot. 

These activities include:

Business Strategy: Strategy and Business plan development for submission and approval with the Executive Board.

Sponsorships: Communication and relationships with current sponsors as well as strategy and outreach to generate new sponsor relationships.

Documentation and Data: Collecting, organizing and maintaining team data and documentation.

Awards Submissions: Leading creation, presentation and submission activities required to be eligible for judged awards.

Outreach: Responsible for processes to organize and track outreach activities.

Spirit Team

The spirit team is responsible for organization of efforts that help the team show our spirit at competitions.

These activities includes:

Development of team apparel, signage, and other efforts for competitions.

Development and production of team spirit hand outs such as buttons and wrist bands.

Organization any other aspects of showing spirit such as team mascots, and cheers.

Marketing & Media Team

This team supports both outward marketing of the team plus the media needs of the other sub teams.

Marketing responsibilities include:

Publishing the teams regular newsletter.

Generation and maintenance of content on the team's website and social media.

Press releases and article submissions.

Media responsibilities include:

Photography, Videography and Animation in support of team documentation, promotion and award submissions.

Graphics, Styles and Templates for the teams printed and digital publishing.

Student Captains

Students have the opportunity to apply for leadership roles for specific groups. The students must demonstrate potential leadership skills, be able to coach other students, monitor timelines and deadlines, communicate activities with the group Lead Mentor and students, verbally and written. They must also meet attendance expectations. Group specific requirements/qualifications can be provided by the Lead Mentor.

Drive Team

Consists of a field coach, controls operator, robot driver, and a human player. This group will be selected by the teacher sponsor with input from the executive mentor board. This is a competitive selection process that allows the student to demonstrate their skills by using a robot from prior years. It will identify both a main team and a back up team. Students interested in this team should practice as much as possible to develop their skills. They must be familiar with the robot construction, programming, and know how to troubleshoot problems. They must also be completely familiar with the rules of the game not only for their position but for the whole team. Besides being adept at their position, each member of this group must be able to interact positively especially under pressure, and must be able to follow verbal direction. The drive team is required to stay with the robot a majority of the time at the competitions. They will also arrive early and stay late to practice at the competitions. This group must interact with the Scouting Team, Alliance teams, and the Pit Crew.

Pit Crew

During the season

Inventory tools and update as needed, ensure they are ready for competition

Responsible for maintenance and upgrades to the robot cart

Responsible for maintenance and upgrades to the shipping crate

Developing a pit for competition

Needs to be familiar with all working parts of the robot and what is needed to repair them so that they can prepare for those items to be available during the competition.

During competition

Set up pit in a timely manner

Make sure tools are put away and pit is cleaned on an ongoing basis

Ensure that batteries are charged and ready to go.

Direct the other team members in disassembling and packing pit away after competition

Practice Field Crew

Responsible for designing and building a practice field using FIRST® specifications for the current’s year’s game. Responsible for assisting with set up of the field when hosting practice events at OHS.

Team Travel & Meals Support

Responsible for making travel and meal arrangements. This includes travel to and from events, competitions, and possibly lodging if required. This group is also responsible for planning and/or coordinating snacks for the build season, travel and any other special event that might take place.



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