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Designing a Competition Robot for Torque or Speed

Teacher Toolbox icon Teacher Toolbox - The Purpose of this Page

This page will help students make connections between torque or speed and competition robots. Before reading this page, have students brainstorm different features and parts of robots that are related to torque and/or speed and write these ideas in their engineering notebooks. Once students have written down their ideas, read through this page as a whole-class.

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Torque or Speed in Robotics Competitions

Whether you build in a torque or speed advantage on your robot will depend on the weight of the objects it interacts with (how heavy the robot's part is, how much force it will need to do its task), and how quickly or carefully you want a task done (moving around the field vs. carefully grabbing and moving a game piece).

It is helpful to consider using torque or speed advantages to accomplish tasks similar to these:

  • Moving the entire robot around the field - speed advantage

  • Lifting and moving large robot arms or claws - torque advantage

  • Controlling a claw to hold game objects firmly - torque advantage

  • Moving a small part that collects small game objects - speed advantage

It is important to read and consider the rules of a competition so that you can build a competition robot for speed and strength in a strategic manner.

Teacher Toolbox icon Teacher Toolbox - Conclusion

Conclude this section by engaging students in a whole class discussion. Ask students to share their thoughts on the importance of torque or speed with competition robots and summarize what they have learned from this section. Encourage students to share their comments from their engineering notebooks.