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World Robot Olympiad changes things up

New game and special TETRIX® components mark 2017 season

SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA (February 2, 2017) – Every year, the World Robot Olympiad (WRO), an international robotics challenge, draws teams from across the globe to compete in one of four challenges: Open Category, Regular Category, WRO Football, and the Advanced Robotics Challenge.

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In recent years, the Advanced Robotics Challenge (ARC), open to students ages 17 to 25, has used a  Robot Bowling challenge where teams had to program a robot to pick up a ball and throw it down a lane to knock down pins. The 2017 ARC game, however, will feature an entirely new game: TetraStack. In this game, autonomous robots must pick up pieces of different shapes and sizes on the field and stack them into a framed-in wall.

"They'll basically have to play Tetris," said Pitsco Robotics Application Specialist Tim Lankford. "It should be a creative game for them to have to solve."

Pamela Scifers, Pitsco's robotics and international marketing manager, agreed. "TetraStack is sure to bring a whole new level of excitement to ARC."

New set pieces enhance creativity

In response to the updated game, Pitsco Education, a sponsor of the World Robot Olympiad, is launching a new TETRIX® WRO Competition Set configuration. "The new configuration will double the amount of building elements teams will have access to, which will enhance the creativity needed to design a robotic solution that can solve the new game," said Scifers. "It will combine a core set of TETRIX elements with a TETRIX expansion set and a set of WRO-specific components such as the HiTechnic controller boxes and other power and control elements."

Pitsco will continue to offer two versions of the set – the WRO Competition Set, which contains the TETRIX building and control elements, and a WRO Competition Set with myRIO, which offers building elements and a robotics controller in a single package.

Teams will travel to San Jose, Costa Rica, for the 2017 WRO. "It's a beautiful country," said Lankford. "They are a very open, friendly people, engaged in making this event a positive experience."

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