The Janksters Unveil their Robot

On Sunday, February 17, the Janksters unveiled their amazing robot to the Notre Dame community. This year’s robotics challenge involved shooting frisbees into high goals and climbing up a 7 1/2 foot pyramid. Six weeks after the challenge was announced, the Janksters completed their robot and displayed it for the first time in Julie Billiart Hall. Before revealing their creation, the team’s committee leads, the coach, a rookie member, and even Mark Leon, from NASA, all gave speeches and presentations describing the team’s extensive work of the past six weeks. When the robot emerged from the back of the gym, led by a team member waving the Janksters’ flag, the team's pride shone on their faces. The robot then shot four frisbees and successfully climbed up to the first level of the pyramid.

The friends and family of the Janksters were amazed by the robot as it came into view. Weighing less than 90 pounds, the slick, innovative robot includes 10 feet of extrusion, 6 wheels, a bright red, powder-coated plate with the updated Janksters insignia, 2 black hanging mechanisms, and a compost bucket. “It skitters like an ant and turns like a jackrabbit,” Crystal Zhang, ‘13, said. Adds Holly Nguyen, ‘14, “It’s our pride and joy.” The complete robot is the result of the combined effort of 25 team members and 11 mentors who have put in over 2,500 student hours of work time.

At the end of the assembly, the parents asked the Janksters questions about their robot as the drive team drove the shiny robot around the playing field a few times.  On Tuesday during lunch the team shared the robot with the students at lunchtime. Finally on Tuesday afternoon the team bagged the completed robot until their first competition. The team will be competing in the Central Valley Regional in Madera on March 1 - 3.

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