Skip to main content

ROAVcopter Mini - Junior High Rules: 2017-2018

1. The Quadcopter

1.1. The Quadcopter that is being utilized for this competition is the Parrot Mambo FPV. First person view (FPV) is essential in competing in the Manual Flight Skill Challenge.

1.2. A smart phone is necessary in order to use Parrots FPV hardware.

1.3. A tablet such as an IPad is also required to program autonomous flight using Tynker.

1.4. Drones can be ordered with an educational discount through the following website: https://edu.parrot.com/.

1.5. Additional propellers, batteries, and battery charger may be purchased though Parrot or Amazon.

1.6. Other third party batteries may have slightly more capacity and are permitted in competitions provided the battery fits in the standard battery holder and is authorized for the parrot Mambo drone.

1.7. Only Parrot or other injection molded plastic propellers may be used. All other propellers, (e.g., carbon fiber) are strictly forbidden.

2. Data Acquisition Package

2.1. The data acquisition package used in this competition is called the ROAVcopter Sensor Kit which is sold though Because Learning.

2.2. The sensor kit consists of the Ardusat Space board and Moteino boards for wireless transmission.

2.3. This system can be acquired through https://www.becauselearning.com/roavcopter.

2.4. Access to the Ardusat experiment ehub is required to upload code and to view live data.

The Field

The field for the ROAV Quadcopter Challenge consists of two canopy tents fastened together to form a flying envelope 32' long X 16' wide X 12' high.  Netting is hung to isolate the quadcopters from participants and spectators, see figure 1.

 ROAVcopter Field

Figure 1. ROAVcopter Field Design

 

3. Safety Practices

3.1  Power cannot be applied to the propellers unless quadcopter is in a netted area.

3.2. All team members and event personnel directly participating at the field will wear designated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Safety glasses are required to be worn by anyone flying or assisting in the flight of the quadcopter. 

3.3. If the skill challenge allows for a team member to be in the netted area while competing, the student will be required to wear a face shield with or without a helmet along with safety glasses (e.g. softball type face mask, or forestry safety headgear). 

3.4. Only one team member will power up and operate the quadcopter; this includes both the hand held controller, connected smartphone/tablet and quadcopter.

3.5. Power cannot be applied to the propellers until all non-essential personnel is out of the field and behind netting and the referee begins the countdown (“3, 2, 1, go”). This does not apply to specific skill challenges that permit a team member to be in the netted are during a match. 

Violating any of these safety practices will result in the disqualification of all teams under that coach. A second offense will result in all teams under that coach being disqualified for half of a season. A third offense will result in all teams under that coach being disqualified for an entire season. 
 

Skill Challenge Rules

Introduction:The 2017-2018 ROAVcopter Mini Challenge will focus on three different precision challenges: Manual Flight, Autonomous Flight, and Computational Thinking. 

Manual flight leverages the Mambo’s FPV capability to maneuver around an obstacle course. Students will fly their Mambo drone using First Person View through various obstacles as quickly as they can.

Autonomous Flight leverages the Mambo’s ability to be programmed. Teams will be required to program their quadcopter through the same course used for the manual flight.

Computational Thinking leverages the payload capacity of the Mambo to carry a sensor package which sends specific information back to a computer. Students are required to design a mounting system for the ROAVcopter Sensor Kit. 

4. Manual Flight


4.1. Field Configuration: This challenge utilizes the Mambos FPV capability. Using first person view, teams will navigate the obstacle course detailed below in figure 2.

4.2. Each team will set their quadcopter on the starting/finishing tile (2' X 2') at one end of the field, fly around a vertical rope at the other end of the field. After flying around the vertical rope, fly through the lower 5'-square PVC hoop and then back around the vertical rope. After flying around the vertical rope the second time, students must then fly though the upper 5'-square PVC hoop and land on the starting/finishing tile (2' X 2') (see figure 2).

4.3. The race will begin with a countdown (“3, 2, 1, go”) and end when the quadcopter comes to rest on the finish tile.

4.4. To be considered a good run, the quadcopter must be in contact with the starting/finishing tile when the word “go” is announced. In other words, quadcopters cannot take off till a referee announces ‘go.’

4.5. Challenge clock will stop when the quadcopter comes to rest and some portion is touching the start/finish tile.

4.6. First person View pilots can pass the controlling device to a Line of Sight (LOS) pilot for final landing. This can only be done after the quadcopter crosses the tapped line on the return journey to the start/finish tile.

4.7. Teams will have 1 - 3 attempts to achieve their best score based on the discretion of the competition manager.

4.8. Scoring for the Manual Flight Challenge Winning team will be based on the team that completes the course in the least amount of time. Teams will be ranked on their flight times, lowest flight time wins.

 Comp Field Layout

Figure 2. Elements and Flight Path for Elementary Skill Challenges.

 

5. Autonomous Flight

5.1. Field Configuration: For this challenge, students are required to program their quadcopter to navigate through the same field elements used in the manual flight skill challenge (see figure 2).

5.2. The programming platform used in this competition is a tablet based drag-and-drop application called Tynker, which is freely available through the Google Play Store or the Apple Store. More information can be found at: https://www.tynker.com/learn-to-code/code-this-drone/.

5.3 Various points will be assigned for flying through each field element along with precision final landing. See scoring below. 

5.4 Navigating through field elements can be done individually with multiple flights, collectively with a single flight, or any combination in between. 

5.5 If using a single flight, the quadcopter must successfully return to the start side of the tapped line to be considered successful. If the flight is not successful, no points will be awarded. 

5.6 If using multiple flights, the quadcopter must return to the start tile side of the tapped line. The team member within the field may pick up the quadcopter, and move it back to the start tile for an additional flight. If the quadcopter does not return to the start tile side of the tapped line, the challenge ends. Points earned for previous successful flights will be awarded. 

5.7 Only the final flight will be eligible for points earned though precision landing. Next, the final flight must end within the one minute allotted to be successful. If the final flight goes over time, no points are awarded for precision landing.  

5.8. Obstacles do not need to be navigated in any specific order as points are awarded based on successfully navigating individual obstacles. 

5.9. Each team will set their quadcopter on the starting tile (2' X 2') at one end of the field. At the ‘Go’ signal, participants will activate their program, and their drone will fly around various obstacles.

5.10. Batteries can be switched during the allotted time provided that the quadcopter lands on the start tile side of the tapped line.

5.11. Teams have one minute to earn as many points as possible.

5.12. Only flights that cross the tapped line and return are eligible to earn points. 

5.13. Teams will have 1 - 3 attempts to achieve their best score based on the discretion of the competition manager.

5.14. Scoring

5.14.1. All points must be earned within the time allotted, one minute. 

5.14.2.   Obstacle point value are as follows:

5.14.2.1. Flying around the rope: 2

5.14.2.2. Flying through the lower hoop: 2

5.14.2.3. Flying through the upper hoop: 2

5.14.2.4. Landing on the 2’ X 2’ finish tile: 3

5.14.2.5. Landing on the 6’ X 6’ finish tile: 2

5.14.2.6 Landing on the start tile side of the taped line: 1

5.14.3. Teams with the most points wins. Ties will be decided based on which team finishes the challenge in the least amount of time.

5.15.4.   Scoring Example:

5.15.4.1. A team opts to complete the tasks in one flight. They navigate around the rope, through the lower hoop, and through the upper hoop. On the return to the starting tile, they land on the 6' x 6' tile. Elapsed time: 36 seconds. Points earned: 8 

5.15.4.2. A team opts to complete the task using two flights. The first flight, the team travels through the lower hoop, the upper hoop, and returns to the starting side of the tapped line. The student then moves the quadcopter to the starting tile, changes the drone battery, and the program. The second flight the student flies around the rope and lands on the 6' x 6' tile. Elapsed time: 52 seconds. Points earned: 8

5.15.4.3. The two teams in the examples above are tied based on points, however, the first team completed the tasks in 36 seconds will be placed ahead of the team that completed the tasks in 52 seconds.  

6. Computational Thinking Skill Challenge

6.1. For this challenge, students are required to gather data, and solve obstacle challenges utilizing the autonomous operation of the quadcopter and the ROAVcopter Sensor Kit. 

6.2. Various field elements including a light emitting bucket and a hot plate will be present on the field.

6.3. Obstacle elements will have to be navigated, while data acquisition elements require remote sensing.

6.4. Each field element will have an associated point value that a team can earn.

6.5. Using the ROAVcopter Sensor Kit, Students will have to identify which color of light, red, blue, or green, is currently being produced by the light emitting bucket.

6.6. Using the ROAVcopter Sensor Kit, teams will have to identify if the hot plate is at ambient temperature (off) or above ambient (on) using sensor data.

6.7. The specific locations and associated point values regarding field elements for this challenge will be released to the teams one hour before the computational thinking skill challenge begins. Once the competition has been released, coaches and mentors will be asked to leave the quadcopter pit area.

6.8. Teams will have one hour to plan their strategy to accumulate as many points as possible during the span of one minute. At the end of one hour, teams will bring their quadcopter and their IPad/tablet to the field so no additional adjustments can be made.

6.9. Each team will set their quadcopter on a starting tile (2' X 2') at one end of the field. At the ‘Go’ signal. Teams must have their quadcopter landed on the finish tile before the one minute allocated for the computational thinking skill challenge runs out.

5.10. Navigating through field elements and the gathering of remote data can be done individually with multiple flights, collectively with a single flight, or any combination in between. 

5.11. If using a single flight, the quadcopter must successfully return to the start side of the tapped line to be considered successful. If the flight is not successful, no points will be awarded. 

5.12. If using multiple flights, the quadcopter must return to the start tile side of the tapped line. The team member within the field may pick up the quadcopter, and move it back to the start tile for an additional flight. If the quadcopter does not return to the start tile side of the tapped line, the challenge ends. Points earned for previous successful flights will be awarded.

5.13. Teams will fly in the reverse order of their ranking based on the manual and autonomous skill challenges. Highest ranked team will fly last, lowest ranked team will fly first. Ties in the overall rank order, will be broken based on random chance (e.g. coin toss, drawing of a short straw)

5.14 Teams will have 1 - 3 attempts to achieve their best score based on the discretion of the competition manager.

 7. Calculating Tournament Champion

7.1. At the end of each skill challenge teams will be ranked based on performance.

7.2. The team that performed the best during a skill challenge will receive a rank of 1. The second best performing team will receive a rank of 2. This process will continue through the field of teams.

7.3. After all skill challenges are completed, each team rankings will be added up for their overall score. Lowest overall score wins the tournament champion.

7.4. Calculating Ties

7.4.1. If two teams tie, they will share those two places. The following ranked team will receive the next available position. For example, if two teams are tied for third place, they will hold the 4th and 5th position. The next highest ranked team will receive the 5th place position.

7.4.2. Tied teams, as in the example above where teams tied for the 3rd and 4th position, will have the lower place (higher number) added into their final score.

7.4.3. If two or more teams tie after calculating overall tournament score, the highest ranked team in the Computational Thinking will receive the higher ranking. Next the Autonomous Flight Challenge will be used to break the next level tie. Next the Manual Flight Challenge will be used to break the next level tie. All other ties will remain tied.