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ROAVcopter Mini - Junior High Rules: 2018-2019

1. The Quadcopter

1.1. The Quadcopter that is being utilized for this competition is the Parrot Mambo Fly. No first person view is required for any of the competitions.

1.2. A smart phone or controller is necessary in order to control the Parrot Mambo Fly.

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://pro.parrot.com/edu/authentification?back=http://pro.parrot.com/edu/.

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 rule 3.1 will result in the disqualification of that team. A second offense will result in that team being disqualified for half of a season. A third offense will result that team being disqualified for an entire season. 

Violating of other safety practices 3.2 - 3.5 will result in a formal warning followed by levels of disqualification as outlined above. 

 

Skill Challenge Rules

Introduction:The 2018-2019 ROAVcopter Mini Challenge will focus on three different precision challenges: Manual Flight, Autonomous Flight, and Computational Thinking. Each skill challenge is required to be completed by a different pilot. 

Manual flight: Students will fly their Mambo drone 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

7.1. Field Configuration: For this challenge, teams will navigate the obstacle course detailed below in figure 2.

7.2. Each team will set their quadcopter on the starting/finishing tile (2' X 2') at one end of the field. After the start of the match, teams will fly around the vertical rope at the other end of the field. After flying around the vertical rope, teams will fly through the upper vertical portion of the  PVC chair hoop in the North to South direction and then back around the vertical rope. After flying around the vertical rope the second time, teams must then fly though the lower portion of the  PVC chair hoop in the East to West direction, then land on the starting/finishing tile (2' X 2') (see figure 2).

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

7.4. 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.’

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

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

7.7. Scoring: 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.

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 comp field

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 suggested for this competition is a tablet based drag-and-drop application called Tynker, which is freely available through the Apple Store. More information can be found at: https://www.tynker.com/learn-to-code/code-this-drone/. Other applications such as Blockly can be used. 

5.3 Various points will be assigned for flying through each field element along with a precision landing. See scoring guide 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 taped 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 taped 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 taped line, the challenge ends. Points earned for previous successful flights will be awarded. 

5.7 A team will be awarded points for precision landing only if the team successfully lands on the 2' X 2', 6' X 6' square, or the tile side of the taped line on the final landing. Only flights that are completed within the one minute allotted will be counted. 

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 the timer will start and participants will activate their program, and their drone will navigate 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 taped line.

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

5.12. Only return flights crossing the taped line and return are eligible to earn points and are eligible to initiate additional flights. 

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 upper vertical hoop: 2

5.14.2.3. Flying through the upper horizontal hoop: 3

5.14.2.4. Flying through the two lower hoops as defined in the manual flight challenge: 2

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

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

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


5.14.3. Direction of flight for traveling through hoops and going around ropes does not matter. Any successful navigation of these obstacles will result in awarded points.

5.14.4. Obstacles can only be scored once. 

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

 

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. The first 10 minutes are reserved for students to take measurements of the competition field. At the end of one hour, teams will bring their quadcopter and their programming controller 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.

6.10. 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. 

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

6.12. If using multiple flights, the quadcopter must return to the start tile side of the taped 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 taped line, the challenge ends. Points earned for previous successful flights will be awarded.

6.13. 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) or average of the places tied for (e.g. 4th, and 5th would average 4.5).

6.14 Teams will have 1 - 3 attempts to achieve their best score based on the discretion of the competition manager. Note: teams are not required to use all attempts if they do not want to.

 

 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.