Dublin Villager

FIRST Lego League contest

ImagiNeers hope efforts pay off in trip to Legoland

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

The ImagiNeers are facing their second trip to the state FIRST Lego League contest with aspirations of Legoland.

The team of students from Indian Run and Wyandot elementary schools and Sells Middle School is one of four Dublin robotics teams that will head to the state contest at Wright Patterson Air Force Base this weekend.

Other Dublin FLL teams headed to the state competition this weekend are Mindstorm Megabytes, ProBotz and Lost in LEGO.

During a practice last week the ImagiNeers ran their robot through the 3 minutes of challenges, this year themed Nature's Fury. The students sights were set on winning a spot to go to Legoland.

If the team scores highly enough, they'll have a chance to go to an international competition or Legoland.

"It would be fun if we could go to Germany, but Legoland would be fun too," said fourth-grader Aneetej Arora. "We've been debating what would be best."

Coach Rajiv Singhal said Legoland is the goal. Most international competitions prove to be expensive with travel and lodging costs.

While the team was running practices and adjusting programming with its robot, the students were also fine tuning their project.

The FLL League gives students challenges through a robot course, a project and core values that encourage teams to help one another and be kind.

The ImagiNeer's project took on hurricanes.

"We were thinking whenever a hurricane comes you have to stay away from your window," fifth-grader Ria Singhal said, adding that hurricanes can do significant damage to homes through windows.

So the team worked up a wind meter that triggers an automatic window covering that rolls down over windows if the wind speed surpasses 70 mph.

For the project, the team had to work out kinks and decide on best practices.

For example, students debated wiring the wind meter to the automatic window coverings or going wireless, Arora said.

The project also requires the team to contact professionals for a little real world expertise.

"We talked to (Columbus meteorologist) Bill Kelly," sixth-grader Rithika Nidimusali said.

"We talked to (WBNS 10TV Meteorologist) Chris Bradley too. We asked them how many miles per hour wind speed would work for everything."

"We learned about air pressure and how a roof can blow off," said fifth-grader Siddharth Gadepalli.

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