IEEE Hardware Team Wins Robotics Trophy at SoutheastCon

ME undergraduate student Eugene Yi and his teammates, members of the Georgia Institute of Technology Chapter of the IEEE Hardware Team took home the third place trophy in the student Hardware (Robotics) Competition at SoutheastCon held March 30 – April 2, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The team ran through four rounds to finish third place out of 57 teams from across the Southeast.  
 
SoutheastCon, the annual IEEE Region 3 Technical, Professional, and Student Conference, is attended by Georgia Tech students each year. The Georgia Tech IEEE Hardware Team last hosted in 2009, and this is the first time in many years the IEEE Hardware Team has reached the finals in the main competition.
 
Teammates Vikram Jain (MS/BS CS, BS EE), Eric Beauchemin (MS + BS ECE), Benjamin Elder (BS CS), Max Mccammon (BS ME), Adrian Radulski (BS ME), and Eugene YI (BS ME) created two “consumer off-the-shelf” (COTS) robots named Burdell and Little Georgie to compete in the event. Little Georgie fit inside Burdell and emerged to complete one of the four tasks required. This year’s challenge had a Star Wars theme and tasks included a lightsaber duel using electromagnetics and launching Nerf darts into a six-inch by six-inch portal. In round three, Jain's team earned one of the best scores of any robot in the competition, 870 of 1,000 available points, to secure their position in the finals. See the video here.
 
A second team from Georgia Tech competed in a separate “open” competition for schools with more than one team. The open competition team included Philip Wolfe (MS + BS ECE), Don Gi Min (BS EE), Matt Kelley (BS ME), Raj Tawde (BS EE), Samarthya Bhatnagar (BS CmpE), Jon Dolan (BS CmpE), and Soham Gadgil (BS CmpE). Their robot “I85” had a non-moving base with walls that expanded outward to accomplish tasks. I85 garnered a degree of celebrity at the event with its extending tape measure maneuver, which many agreed was a highlight. You can watch the video here.