RoboRugby Competition tests UCD students’ engineering skills
(From left) First-year UCD engineering students Aisling Drumgode, Aideen Doyle, Niamh O'Brien, Brian Feighan, Sean Totterdell and James Greer. Photo by Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

RoboRugby Competition tests UCD students’ engineering skills

24 Apr 2013

The 2013 Siemens RoboRugby Competition champion was decided at last night’s final held at UCD’s Belfield campus, demonstrating the engineering skills of these first-year students.

The RoboRugby tournament was devised to test the analytical and abstract problem-solving skills of UCD’s first-year engineering students. A total of 62 students making up 21 teams entered the competition, where they had to build an autonomous robot that would be able to score tries on a playing table against an opposing team’s custom-built robot.

After 41 games, How I Met Your Motor designed by Michael French, Shane Skelly and Dan Sullivan was named this year’s winner, while Lunatic Trials by Cillian Doyle, Stuart Gallagher and Jordan McSharry took second place and GloboRobo by Marcos Byrne, Brian Carolan and Cian Rushe came in third.

Additional awards were also handed out to Wall-E by Joe Bollard, Philip Corr and Niamh O’Brien, which received an Innovative Design Award, and Ben 10 by Joan McCarthy, Sinead Nolan and Sean O Murchu, which was named Best-Looking Robot.

Each competing robot was built from scratch by the students who were supplied with the same parts to work with.

“The Siemens RoboRugby Competition really motivates engineering students to start thinking inventively and independently – skills that will be essential in their professional careers,” explained Brian Mulkeen from UCD’s School of Electrical, Electronic and Mechanical Engineering. “The game of RoboRugby is designed to provide an interesting challenge, with many possible solutions, yet at a level that can be tackled by first-year engineering students.”

“Siemens RoboRugby is about challenging students to think conceptually and strategically,” said Michael O’Connor, communications manager for Siemens in Ireland, who supports the event in an effort to promote careers in engineering among young people.

“Every year we are in awe of the immense talent and creativity of the students, 2013 is no exception. The innovations I have seen on display today point to a bright future led by a talented group of thinkers who are putting their education into creative practice,” he added.

Elaine Burke
By Elaine Burke

Elaine Burke was editor of Silicon Republic until 2023, and is now the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. Elaine joined Silicon Republic in 2011 as a journalist covering gadgets, new media and tech jobs. She later served as managing editor before stepping up as editor in 2019. She comes from a background in publishing and is known for being particularly pernickety when it comes to spelling and grammar – earning her the nickname, Critical Red Pen.

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