University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering


UH Engineering Students Compete in Robotics Competition

Teams of University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering students will race their robots in the Commons area of Engineering Building 1 at 11 a.m. Monday, Nov. 25.

The Fall 2002 Robotics Competition will feature teams of students who have designed robots for the "Lost Puppy Rescue." The object of this competition is to design and build a mobile autonomous robot that will follow a current-carrying wire to rescue a "lost puppy" (a 1-inch cube of wood), and then pick up the puppy and return it to the starting point. The fastest robot to complete the task wins.

"Robots are an excellent way of supporting electrical and computer engineering education," says engineering professor John Glover, noting that some of the students are using the robotic competition as their senior design project. However, he is careful not to turn the robotics lab into a lecture classroom. The students do all their own research and make their own design decisions. Glover does supervise their work and he will tell a team if their design is completely unfeasible.

Glover's goal is to give students the opportunity to use their electrical engineering skills.

"You learn from the project," says Glover. "That's what projects are all about. The best thing educationally for them is to learn on their own, with guidance," he says.