OPHS Robotics Team Gears up

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After getting fourth place in the regional robotics competition, the Oak Park Robotics team gears up for a new project during its offseason before the competition starts up next year.

Ivonee Mejia
Police Robot: Oak Park’s tactical robot is on the works. “We’re preparing to build a tactical robot for the Platte County Sheriff’s Department, they’ve given us money to build a robot that will help them save their lives,” said junior Luke Sherfield.

This time, the team plans a tactical robot for the for the use of the Platte County Sheriff’s department. The Platte County Sheriff’s Department has given the Oak Park Robotics team $5,000 for the team to build them a tactical robot that has the ability to, “go up and down stairs, open doors, and launch grenades, as well as shoot pepper spray,” junior Luke Sherfield said.

Although the pressure to create a robot to save lives is big, engineering teacher Mark Sharp mentioned that “working on this robot was a lot less stressful than working on the competition robot.”

This project has had its fair share of difficulty.

Ivonee Mejia
Robotics Coach Mike Sharp discusses plans with the robotics team. “It is a lot less stressful working on the police robot than working on the competition robot. Platte County appreciates what we’re doing for them and they’re getting a $100,000 robot for $5,000,” Sharp said.

Sharp disagrees.

“Not all of our veterans aren’t here yet, so we’re working with first-year people or some second-year people but for the police robot there are mostly first years, so we aren’t in full mode yet, so we don’t have our veterans here because they participate in sports like track or football.”

Sharp explained what he thought the issue was.

“Getting everything perfect.” Sharp said. “if one thing doesn’t work right then the robot fails and then the mission fails. We have to get everything measured exact on this and some of the parts we manufacture ourselves.”

Ivonee Mejia
Robotics Equipment: Oak Park’s equipment and tools are within reach for the robotics team to make custom parts. “If one thing doesn’t work right then the robot fails and then the mission fails,” junior Luke Sherfield said.

The robotics team hopes to gain experience from building this robot: from building special parts or to build a robot good enough to get to the top 3 in the regional competition that will advance the team to the world competition.

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