2013-05-13 / Front Page

Indianapolis To Host 2013 National SeaPerch Challenge Underwater Robotic Championship


Owen Valley High School SeaPerch team members Joseph Bevers, left, and Chad St. John are shown holding trophies for winning first in formal presentation and second in deep water transfer at the recent state competition held at Southridge High School in Dubois County. Overall, the pair placed second, advancing them to the 2013 National SeaPerch Challenge to be held Saturday, May 18 in Indianapolis. The event will be held at the IU Natatorium on the campus of Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). Admission is free so make plans to support your Owen Valley SeaPerch team. (Courtesy Photo) Owen Valley High School SeaPerch team members Joseph Bevers, left, and Chad St. John are shown holding trophies for winning first in formal presentation and second in deep water transfer at the recent state competition held at Southridge High School in Dubois County. Overall, the pair placed second, advancing them to the 2013 National SeaPerch Challenge to be held Saturday, May 18 in Indianapolis. The event will be held at the IU Natatorium on the campus of Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). Admission is free so make plans to support your Owen Valley SeaPerch team. (Courtesy Photo) SeaPerch, a national educational outreach program using underwater robotics, sponsored by the US Navy’s Office of Naval Research (ONR), will hold its third National SeaPerch Challenge on the campus of Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) on Saturday, May 18, at the University’s Natatorium housing the Olympic pool. There the top 100 winning teams from regional competitions held across the country will assemble for a day-long series of in-pool competitions and poster presentations to determine the 2013 middle school and high school National Champions. This is the third year for the National SeaPerch Challenge, and the first year for Nationals to be held in Indianapolis.

SeaPerch is an innovative K-12 underwater robotics program that trains teachers and group leaders to inspire student teams to build their own SeaPerch Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV’s) following a curriculum consistent with national standards supporting science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects with a marine engineering-based theme. The program promotes hands-on learning of engineering concepts, problem solving, teamwork, design skills and introduces students to potential and exciting careers in naval architecture, marine, ocean and naval engineering.

This year, The National SeaPerch Challenge will partner with NTMA’s 2013 National Robotics League (NRL) Championships, also to be held on the IUPUI campus on May 17-19, the third year in a row its National Championship will be held in Indianapolis. The NRL is a student-designed robot combat competition intended to introduce a new generation of Americans to the advanced skills and sophisticated technology that mark manufacturing today. The partnership is more of an exchange, which will allow for interaction among the participants during the overlapping two days of national championships. More information will be posted on the National SeaPerch Challenge web pages as the events draw nearer including schedules of both competitions. There’s no structured time to visit, but the schedules will be shared, and the opportunity to visit will be offered.

“The SeaPerch Program and the NTMA are excited about this opportunity to provide an exchange atmosphere for these simultaneous events allowing the student participants of both to visit each other’s championships, interact with their peers and learn about different robotics platforms as they observe each other’s skills in the heat of battle,” said Susan G. Nelson, Executive Director of the SeaPerch Program at the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International Foundation (AUVSIF), located in Arlington, VA, which promotes the development of aerial, land-based and subsea robotics.

“NTMA is proud of its support for the National Robotics League, which partners middle school, high school and post-secondary school students with our local member companies,” said Maureen Carruthers, Program manager at the National Robotics League. “This partnership allows the students to work with businesses as a team to build sophisticated robots designed to do battle with one another. What you see is a destruction-driven face-off of innovative machines that they’ve designed themselves – providing the students with an invaluable opportunity to develop high tech skills while stirring their interest in becoming part of the future of manufacturing and having a lot of fun in the bargain.”

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