Technology @ MCS




In June 2004, 2 Mars rovers landed on the red planet to explore the Martian terrain.  Engineers had to overcome many obstacles along the way, both physical and electrical. Since this successful mission, numerous private investors are interested in building a prototype robot which will explore the Lunar Surface.  One investor is interested in building a  hotel in the future which will house private customers for up to two weeks on the moon.  In order to complete this mission, they need a robot which can perform many tasks remotely, before sending humans to the moon.


This investor has contacted MCS Engineering with the hopes of building a prototype. 

In order to supply the customer with the best possible prototype, I am proposing a contest to evaluate the best design.


You will be working with a partner for this project.  You  must design a LEGO robot using the contents of only 2 LEGO kits.  You may not use any foreign objects other than paper or vinyl to label your robot.  Your robot will be evaluated on the following criteria:


Speed & Agility - 200pts

Your robot will be put through an obstacle course which will include all of the following obstacles:    Steep slope, Sand bog,  Max 2" high obstacle, and a slalom. You will also have to pick and place an object, a set of 4 small tires attached to an axle.  The robot must clearly pick up the object and place it inside a square taped to the board.  Your robot will be timed for this challenge as well. This test will be done remotely, and you will not be allowed to touch or see the robot.  You will be operating the robot, via television camera.  You must have a place on the robot to attach the TV camera and umbilical.


Power - 100pts

Your robot will be attached to another robot for a robot tug of war using a 2 foot piece of string, tied securely to each robot. As in a tug of war the robot who pulls its competitor over the line is declared the winner. If there is a deadlock of more than 2 minutes, the facilitator has the right to declare a winner.  A piece of tape fixed on the floor can serve as the boundary line.


Aesthetics / Workmanship - 100pts

How well your robot matches your design, and how well it is built.


Efficiency - 100pts

In a modified tug of war your robot will be tested for efficiency.  Your robot will be tied to a competitor with a 4' slack line.  The robot with the best speed and equal power will be the winner. An example of the test track is below.

If there is a deadlock of more than 2 minutes, the facilitator has the right to declare a winner.  A piece of tape fixed on the floor can serve as the boundary line.

Design Report - 200pts

Prepare a 3 page design report. Also include drawings, sketches, and program.  Evaluate your design, and compare your robot to your competitors.  Evaluate competition results and site reasons for deficiency or strengths in your design. 



You can only use 2 Lego Kits, no foreign materials except paper for name.

It must be controlled remotely via the 2 RCX'S supplied

There are no size or weight limitations of your robot.

You must take part in each evaluation.

You must pick up and place the object with the robot only

You must assign a robot name.

Do not share ideas with other competitors, they are the enemy.



Develop a name for your robot.

Design your robot, and calculate gear ratio's

Build a robot program using the Robolab software.

Test your robot.

Re-evaluate your robot and make adjustments.

Compete in the competition.

Prepare design report.