Termin8tors victorious in global finals of LEGO robotics league

11 Jun 2012

Termin8tors at Dublin Airport yesterday. Back, l to r: Pearce Geoghegan, Dara Coughlan, Michael McAndrew, Emmett Geoghegan, Kevin McAndrew, Eoin O'Reilly. Front l to r: Cian Roche and Daniel Geoghegan. Absent from photo is Dylan Whelan

Young Galway robotics team the Termin8tors has returned home victorious from Mannheim, Germany, after gleaning a gold medal in the global finals of the FIRST LEGO League Open European Championship.

The team of nine young brothers and friends from Moycullen Robotics Club in Co Galway range in age from nine to 14 and are Kevin McAndrew, Michael McAndrew, Eoin O’Reilly, Daniel Geoghegan, Emmet Geoghegan, Pearce Geoghegan, Dara Coughlan, Cian Roche and Dylan Whelan.

The nonet arrived back at Dublin Airport yesterday morning, after scooping first place in the Gracious Professionalism Core Value Award in the LEGO global finals of the 2012 robotics competition.

This year, the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) LEGO League robotics challenge attracted teams from more than 35 countries spanning the globe, with 67 young teams competing with each other to show off their robotic skills around food safety.

It was back in January that the Termin8tors won the overall prize at the Irish FIRST LEGO League Challenge after the group created a smartphone app called Food Safety Buddy, as well as a robot.

The app they developed aims to help the user shop for, store and prepare food safely.

Bernard Kirk, director of The Galway Education Centre, and co-founder of the competition in Ireland, said the Termin8tors won the award in recognition of their high level of teamwork, co-operation and leadership skills that they developed during the course of the competition.

The team had travelled to Germany with their mentors and fathers, Declan McAndrew and Thomas Roche, and a team of supporters from Co Galway.

Roche, father of Cian, said that after a week of intensive scientific and technological challenges it was fantastic for the team to have won this award.

“It was very interesting to see other teams’ approach at solving the same problem. We’re very thankful for all the support we have been given,” said Michael McAndrew, a parent of two of the team members.

“Standards are rising every year and we are delighted to be building such a strong profile internationally through our students,” he added.

SAP supports the FIRST LEGO League in Ireland.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic