RoboSub 2019 – Day 8

Today was the last day of the competition, which means only one thing. Well, two actually: our finals run (at 4:30 pm, which meant we had a good amount of time to panic before then), and the highly anticipated pool party at the hotel later tonight! Our last practice run was scheduled for 9:00 am, so our morning crew got the luxury of waking up an hour later than usual.

From this practice test, we found that we were not able to keep tethered throughout the run. Our cable itself did not reach far enough, and ropes going across the TRANSDEC pool made the tether further susceptible to getting stuck. Instead, our team decided to let our robot go untethered during the run. This worked out beautifully! We ran a skeleton of the competition mission, and Auri was able to navigate from the gate to the two buoys, went past the torpedo target, and surfaced near the octagon twice. The team had never attempted the octagon before, but we were still able to come within a few meters.

Not too long after, our dear Andrew had to leave to catch his flight back to Edmonton. Tearful goodbyes and semi-dramatic hugs were exchanged as we sent our Electrical Team Lead off. After he left TRANSDEC, Andrew sent everyone an inspirational speech over Slack. He expressed his gratitude, appreciation, and pride towards the team and gave us a boost of encouragement for our finals run. Needless to say, everyone lost control of their emotions and reacted to Andrew’s message with hearts and crying emojis. Seven people also reacted with the peach emoji, though I cannot fathom why.

For the rest of the afternoon, Juan, Gab, and Rumman worked on creating a map with the help of trusty ol’ Google Earth. This map contained the approximate locations of props in the competition mission that we had never been able to reach before. The rest of our team was by the kiddie pool testing torpedoes and obtaining more accurate readings. One scary thing that happened was after we changed Auri’s batteries, we started to fail our pressure test. Thankfully, David caught this early enough that no water got inside the hull. We really did not need a repeat of the nightmare of a flooding robot.

It was now time for our finals run. We played “Imperial March” as we made our way to the pool and hilariously reacted to our competition video as it played on the big screen (we were the only ones laughing at our own video). Families, friends, and our very own Justin Francis were commenting and supporting us on the live stream. Then, we locked arms and watched in suspense as Auri started her course. The robot successfully went through the gate with style and hit the backside of the 3-sided buoy. She came up just short on Jiangshi. Then, Auri attempted the torpedoes and twice missed the uncovered hole, but scored lots of partial points!

Our finals run went well. It was a run that we were proud of and satisfied with. Our team was relieved, but also apprehensive over how many points we had scored. Having watched the other teams perform, we knew it was going to be a tight race for the top. At the very least, we were super happy to have shot twice near the torpedo target, something that we’ve only done once before! We made our way back to the hotel with a light heart and began packing our crate.

The awards ceremony started at 8:00 pm at the Handlery Hotel. It was an amazing night. ARVP received 4thplace overall, and we were awarded $2000! We were also awarded $500 for being the first team to qualify. The whole team was ecstatic and in complete celebratory spirits. We took priceless photos wearing the most absurd costumes and props and ran around with our Canada and Alberta flags proudly on our backs. Yes, we believed we were in the Robotics Olympics.

Then, we finished packing our crate and it was time for the pool party. We conversed with other teams, stuffed our bellies full with pizza, and threw a few ARVP members into the pool. Disclaimer: Do not throw members into a pool on a whim; it is highly dangerous for both the individual being thrown and the bystanders. ARVP does not support nor recommend this action in any shape, way, or form.


Blogger’s note:

I want to thank everyone who has continuously supported this blog. Thank you travelling with us vicariously through the six-hundred word posts every day. Thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to be a part of our flourishing journey. Your continuous support and love have made our success possible.

To my beloved ARVP team members: I owe everyone immense gratitude for the hard work inputted into the club over the past year. Thank you for gifting me with the honour of attending RoboSub this year and allowing me to experience true teamwork and talent. Each one of your unique skills complete our team, and I am proud to be included in this family.

Thank you all.