The battle of the underwater robots
Cairns State High School are the winners of the first JCU ROV Challenge.
Students from five Cairns high schools competed at James Cook University’s aquarium in Cairns to see who had built the best underwater robot.
In the lead-up to the competition students from Woree State High, Cairns High, Trinity Bay, Bently Park and Redlynch State College worked hard to build and program their Remote Operated Vehicles (ROVs) from kits provided by JCU.
“Although each team received the same kit, there’s a lot of skill involved in building, programming and operating the ROV, and that’s what we tested in the aquarium,” Associate Professor Jamie Seymour said.
The students were given a series of challenges to use their ROV to measure a fish, find something hidden in the tank, and to report back on a message written on an underwater sign.
As the team that completed their challenges in the shortest time, the Cairns State High crew of Rowan McNab, Tarquin Aldridge and Lewis Ederveen won a trip with Associate Professor Seymour to JCU’s Orpheus Island research station, where they will operate their ROV in the ocean.
“ROVs are an awesome tool for getting a close look at what’s underwater, and building your own is a great exercise in team work, combined with some maths, IT and construction,” Associate Professor Seymour said.