About Combat Robotics @ Cornell
Who We Are
Founded in Fall 2019, our team aimed to create a fun and inclusive environment where our members could learn about the exciting field of combat robotics, enhance their skills in the domain(s) of their interest, and make long lasting friendships. As a start-up team, we had humble beginnings and built the foundation we have today with minimal resources, passionate members, and a ton of trial and error until we found processes that work best for us. Today, we are 24 members strong and are excited to welcome a new class of members this fall.
What We Do
Combat Robotics @ Cornell builds robots with the goal of competing in the Norwalk Havoc Robotics League’s spring competition and winter championships. We have four subteams, each of which work on a different project:
The Kinetic subteam designs and manufactures a combat robot in a high-kinetic-energy robot class, emphasizing damage, durability, and a competitive edge. Kinetic has three subsystems that form once a general design is chosen: Chassis designs the shell, armor and internal structure of the robot; Weapon designs the damage-dealing components and selects electronics to power them; and Powertrain designs the locomotion system while integrating all powered elements into a reliable, compact system.
Our Marketing subteam organizes team events, manages the budget, maintains alumni and corporate relationships, and secures funding for the team. Members manage the team's image by coding improvements for our website and developing creative designs for merchandise and promotional material. This subteam is also responsible for displaying CRC's progress and personality through social media.
The Sportsman subteam designs and manufactures a combat robot in the Sportsman class, a low-kinetic-energy combat robot class that emphasizes creativity, design ingenuity, and interdisciplinary collaboration. Sportsman consists of 3 subsystems: powertrain, chassis, and weapon. These subsystems combine their components during the fabrication stage to produce our finished robot.
The Firmware subteam works on applying artificial intelligence techniques and autonomous capabilities in the context of combat robotics. Every year, Firmware takes a previous year's robot and revamps it through a new coding project. The Firmware subteam currently consists of 3 subsystems: Tracking and Movement designs algorithms to detect boundaries and attack other robots; Electrical designs circuits that enable sensing, decision making, and locomotion; and Testing ensures that all aspects of the code and hardware work in concert, as intended.
Our goal is to extend our learning beyond our initiatives at Cornell. By having four subteams with different focuses, members have built interdisciplinary communication skills that will be used throughout their careers. Every student in CRC is able to take something that they have learned from their major and apply it here, using past lessons to solve current problems. If provided the funding and support, CRC plans to make an impact in the community surrounding Cornell. This past summer, Kinetic subteam alum Mohammad Ali Moghaddasi brought our competition robot to an elementary school in Binghamton to teach students about engineering and robotics, letting them safely test-drive it and view our recent competition footage. Mo was able to explain the basics of our robots to the kids and help them design their own. We hope to do this yearly in the future, bringing more of our members and educating students at more schools.
How You Can Help
We need your help to bring Combat Robotics @ Cornell to their first championship competition on December 17, 2022! Since this is our first time qualifying for championships, we want to bring the whole team to participate in this momentous achievement together. We’re asking for your support in funding the cost of transportation and lodging for every single member of the team, and making our championship dreams come true.
If we exceed our goals for competition funding and support, CRC plans to hold larger and more engaging community outreach events at the end of the year. Last year, we held our first showcase in the Upson Lounge to show our friends, professors and peers all that CRC has to offer. We brought our robots, made a small photo booth, and handed out candy to teach people about our team and allow them to join in on the fun. We had many ideas of what we wanted to do at the showcase, and only accomplished some of them due to budget constraints. This upcoming spring, we hope to upgrade our event by renting out Duffield Hall for an afternoon, building a small scale arena so we can power our robots, and handing out promo materials, like stickers and mini 3d printed robots. If we succeed in the crowdfunding campaign, CRC will be able to bring these ideas to life.