In lieu of attending the biennial Maritime RobotX Challenge, which was set to take place in Honolulu this past December but was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Engineering students on Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Maritime RobotX Team will host a demonstration of its latest autonomous watercraft technology Jan. 18-19 in New Smyrna Beach.
“The cancellation of the Maritime RobotX Challenge was pretty disheartening for students who worked on the project for the past two years,” said the team’s advisor, Dr. Eric Coyle, Mechanical Engineering associate professor and Ph.D. program coordinator. “And many of our team members will graduate before the next competition in 2022.”
About 15 students and 3 faculty members will be in attendance for the event, which will be held outside, behind the Brannon Center, 105 S. Riverside Drive, with strict COVID-19 safety precautions in place. Media and the public are welcome. The best viewing area will be along the walkway in Riverside Park, overlooking the Indian River.
“This event will offer students a platform to show off their hard work, demonstrate some robotic boat technology to the community and reignite their passion for research in the new year,” Coyle added. “The pandemic might have set our students back, but it didn’t keep them from achieving their goals.”
The last RobotX Challenge was hosted in 2018, and the Eagle squad took home several awards, including a third-overall finish.
On Jan. 18, from 9 a.m. to noon and again from 1-5 p.m., the team will set up and run practice maneuvers and system tuning. Additional practice will be held on Jan. 19, from 9 a.m. to noon, with a final system demonstration that mimics the one normally held at the Maritime RobotX Challenge from 1-5 p.m.
For more information, contact Dr. Coyle at (386) 226-7441, or email@example.com.