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Martian Frisbee throwing robot set for spin

February 20, 2013 - Six weeks.

That's how long the the First Robotics teams of Goodrich were given by NASA Robotics Alliance to build a robot that can toss flying discs into goals and then climb a 90-inch pyramid. The project, titled "Ultimate Ascent," was completed by the Goodrich students at midnight Feb. 19.

"Not enough time, not enough money, not enough help to get the job done," laughs Patrick Major, mentor for the Goodrich Robotic teams for the past 12 years. "These challenges are very similar to the real world work place."

Major is just one of about 20 mentors that are assisting about 28 Goodrich students that comprise two robotics teams named Martians and More Martians, who just completed two robots for competition on March 2-3 at Kettering University FIRST Robotics District Competition. Sponsored by General Motors, Kettering, the Chrysler Foundation and Onsite Areospace Engineering, the Goodrich teams created "My Favorite Robot" and "My Other Favorite Robot" to compete against about 40 other Michigan schools.

"So far Goodrich students from the robotic teams have received about $100,000 in scholarships," added Major. "The nice thing is, when these students graduate everyone has the opportunity to go pro."

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