Tenth Annual MATE Pacific Northwest ROV Challenge Results

Thank you to all mentors and teams for participating this year. As usual we had a fantastic time and were amazed by the inginuity displayed. Our volunteers made this event happen so a very special thank you goes out to all of them. Have a great summer and look to this website for our workshops in the fall.

In a day of excellent competition at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center, the following teams rose to the Awards level. Congratulations to all who participated - we really enjoyed the day and hope you did too!

Ranger Class:
1st - ANMO & CO, Seattle  (475/510 points)
2nd - Team Oceanus, SeaTech 4H Club, Mt. Vernon (310 pts)
3rd - M.E.D.U.S.A., SeaTech 4H Club, Mt. Vernon (305 pts)
Best Team Spirit - Robotics Anonymous, South Whidbey Academy, Langley
Best Poster - AMNO & CO (50/50 pts)

Navigator Class:
1st - TJH Seawolves, Timbercrest Junior High, Woodinville (184/270 pts)
2nd - Puget Sound Navigators, Wilson ROV Club, Langley (176 pts)
3rd - VulcanWerks, VulcaWerks ROV Club, Kirkland (175 pts)
Honorable Mention - Norwegian Narwals, Goodman Middle School, Gig Harbor (174 pts)
Best Team Spirit - Octo Roboto, Learning Access Inst., Seattle
Best Poster - TJH Seawolves (48/50 pts)

Scout Class:
1st - Friday Harbor Middle School, Friday Harbor, (239/270 pts)
2nd - Tao Robotics, Bay View Elementary School, Burlington (223 pts)
3rd - Bubble Knights, Community ROV Club, Vancouver (203 pts)
Best Team Spirit - Bubble Knights, Vancouver
Best Poster - Maywood Team Splash, Maywood Middle School, Issaquah (48/50 pts)

Special Awards:
Rookie of the Year - Big Picture Robotics, Bellevue Big Picture School, Bellevue
Design Elegance - AMNO & CO, Seattle
Best Safety Systems - Bubble Knights, Vancouver
Angus MacGyver Award - Salish Sea Submersibles, One Ocean STEM Camp, Anacortes

Student Registration and Schedule

We have two weeks until competition day which means that we are in crunch time for student registrations! I know you are all super busy trying to get your team to finish up all their work and start practicing but I need to get an accurate head count for competition day. Students must be registered through Active.com by Wednesday, May 6th. Please follow the instructions that can be found here. Mentors, please look in your section and start at step 5. You can send this link to parents of your students and they can follow the instructions under the 'Students' link. It is very important that this gets done ASAP, we need to know who is coming so we can start planning our lunches and number of judges required.

Also due on May 6th is the Team Spec sheet and SIDs. While we do not require a full technical report, it is very important for our judges to have a single page (single sided) spec sheet. This sheet is covered in detail in the mission documents, but I will require that you have a picture of your team and of the ROV. We must also have the basic specs of your ROV (cost, cool features, etc.). The SID is also discussed in detail in the mission document. This is not a full electrical schematic of the ROV, rather a generalized (think flow chart) of the ROV that shows the above water and below water components and how they fit together. Both documents are require for every team, teams may not pass their safety inspections without them.
If your team is having difficulties and you believe you will not compete on May 9th, we need to know now. This has a large impact on our judging teams and head count for lunch. Please let us know if your team will not be participating.
The mission schedule has not been finalized, however our day will follow a similar schedule to that below:

0745 - 0845 - Check in - Lobby
0800-1000 - Safety checks at your work table
0900-0945 - Judges and CEO/Captain's meeting - ALL Classes
1030 - 1200 - ALL CLASSES - First rounds of competition
1200-1300 - Lunch
1300-1530 - ALL CLASSES - Last rounds of competition
1530-1630 - Team Pack up and pool station tear down
1630-1650 - Awards
1700 Depart Facility.
Finally, general safety notes:
If you have not passed the fluid power quiz you will not be able to use any fluid power on your ROV. See Mission documents for definition of fluid power for your class. If you have not been approved for laser use by the MATE center, you will not be allowed to have a laser on your ROV. Both the fluid power quiz and laser approval documents need to be provided by your team, do not assume that we have them.

Batteries are not allowed to be used onboard your ROV. Any power that goes to your ROV must be provided by MATE and pass through the MATE fuse.
Closed toed shoes are required on the pool deck. No sandles or flip flops. Keens that have a toe box are allowed.
Teams should always wear eye protection while working on their ROV.


Good luck, please feel free to call with any questions and don't forget to re-read your mission documents!

Cancelled April 11th Practice Session

I am so sorry to say that we will have to cancel our practice session next Saturday. The maintenance on the pool has hit some snags and it is still leaking. We do not have a final completion date and so are not able to reschedule at this time. If we happen to have some time before competition we may try to open the pool for a day but as of now we do not know if this can happen.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Competition Briefing and Practice Days


On Saturday Feb. 28th, we will be having two meetings/activities at the Ocean Sciences Bldg at the Univ. of Washington in Seattle that are important to ALL competition classes. Coaches/mentors and Team-captains/CEOs are encouraged to participate. Please RSVP to Wes Thompson (thompson.wes@gmail.com) regarding who will attend each of the following from your team/organization:
 - 9am - 1pm: Building pool props - we will create (or complete) at least one set of props for each competition class (in high-bay area)
 - 1pm - 4pm: Mission Briefings - we will discuss each classes' missions for our Regional Challenge with a set of pool props (in Room 425)
We will NOT be serving lunch, but will have soda, fruit and snacks available mid-day.

On Saturday Mar. 14th, we will be having an OPEN POOL and DESIGN FEEDBACK event at the Ocean Sciences Bldg at the Univ. of Washington in Seattle. There will be batteries and pool-props available, along with pilot table/chairs and a video monitor at our 4m deep SALT-WATER test tank, along with professional engineers to provide design feedback.There are TWO sessions to choose from to spread out our available resources - each team will get ~30min of tank-time. Please RSVP to Wes (thompson.wes@gmail.com) if you wish to attend a session with your ROV and whether morning or afternoon is your preference.
- 9am - 1pm: - Morning session - maximum 10 teams
- 1pm - 5pm: Afternoon session - maximum 10 teams
We will NOT be serving lunch, but will have soda, fruit and snacks available mid-day.

Fluid Power Quiz

Hello teams!

Please visit http://www.marinetech.org/pneumatics--hydraulics-safety-test/

As a reminder, teams planning to use fluid power must take this quiz.  (See your respective classes’ competition manual for more information about fluid power.)  As it states on this page:

The quiz should be completed by the STUDENT company members.  Each member of the company does NOT have to take the quiz; students can work together and make it a group effort.  ONLY ONE TEST PER COMPANY.  The company’s instructor or mentor can provide guidance and advice, but the questions should be answered by the students participating on the company.  The quiz will be scored and the results provided instantaneously.  A score of 100% is considered a passing grade.  Companies can take the quiz as many as 5 times to achieve this score.

The quiz must be completed with a passing grade by March 1, 2015.  Companies failing to complete this quiz within the given time frame will NOT be permitted to use fluid power during their competition event. 

Ask any questions you have regarding your fluid power ASAP. We will disqualify teams that do not follow these rules.


PNW Regional Mission Task Changes!

The MATE Pacific Northwest Regional Challenge (Sat., May 9, 2015) will be using the following sections from the MATE International Specifications:

For RANGER Class:
        Product Demonstration #1: Science Under the Ice
        Product Demonstration #3: Offshore Oilfield Production and Maintenance
You will get ONE attempt at each of these missions with the usual timing (5 min mobilization, 15 min mission clock, 5 min demobilization). Your scores for each attempt will be ADDED together for the "Pool Mission" section of your final score. This will only be one HALF of the total points available. The other half will come from your POSTER and your ENGINEERING EVALUATION. In those, you WILL be expected to address how your vehicle is designed to perform Production Demonstration #2 because if you win this Regional, you will have to attempt that mission at the International Competition in St. John's, Newfoundland.

        Product Demonstration #1: Science Under the Ice
You will get TWO attempts at this mission and your final score will be the HIGHEST of those two attempts. You will have the usual timing for each opportunity - 5 min mobilization, 15 min mission-clock, 5 min demobilization. This 'Pool Mission' score will be one half of the total points available, the other half will come from your POSTER and your ENGINEERING EVALUATION sessions. You will NOT be expected to discuss how your ROV can conduct Product Demonstration #2 as this will not be part of our Regional Competition.

For SCOUT Class:
        Product Demonstration #1: Science Under the Ice
        Product Demonstration #2: Subsea Pipeline Inspection & Repair
You will get TWO attempts at these missions which will be combined into one operational area in the pool. Your final score will be the HIGHEST of those two attempts. You will have the usual timing for each opportunity - 5 min mobilization, 15 min mission-clock, 5 min demobilization. This 'Pool Mission' score will be one half of the total points available, the other half will come from your POSTER and your ENGINEERING EVALUATION sessions. Please study the Scout Class Competition Manual from MATE to understand those parts of the event. They are as important as building the ROV and putting it in the water!

Your qualification to proceed to the International Competition will be:
        Product Demonstration #2, last 5 tasks (all props built per Explorer Class specs)
                • Removing the wellhead’s protective cover
                • Installing the gasket into the wellhead
                • Replacing the wellhead’s protective cover
                • Inserting the hot stab into the port on the wellhead
                • Removing the hot stab and returning it to the surface
You will get one attempt at these tasks during the Challenge lunch hour (~ noon) with slightly abbreviated timing: (5min mob., 12min mission, 3min de-mob). (The mission and de-mob time is shorter than usual because we'll only have one set of props for all teams.)  You MUST make an attempt at that time, and only if you fail will you be given another opportunity at the end of competition (~4pm). If you cannot complete these tasks by 4:30pm on Saturday May 9th, we will inform MATE that you will NOT be attending the International Competition in St. John's, Newfoundland.

NOTES on our facility - Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center, Federal Way, WA
- Ranger and Explorer classes will be operating in a pool that is 5.2 meters deep.
- Navigator and Scout classes will be operating in a pool that is 3.1 meters deep.
- All pools are filled with warm (~85F), chlorinated fresh water. Pool floors are effectively flat (less than 2-deg slope).
- We will make monitors available as best we can but they're in limited supply. If you need a monitor at your pool-mission station, please let us know in advance so we can be sure to accommodate you.
- All power will be provided by 12V sealed batteries. (same as we've used for ~5 years)
- All mission stations will have 115AC available for Control and Communications functions only.
- All mission stations will have a table and 2 chairs. At Navigator and Ranger stations, all pilots/operators MUST face away from the pool.
- We will have a Repair Station available to STUDENTS only.
- We will enforce the MATE Competition Philosophy as documented in the General Rules section of all Competition Manuals.

PNW Regional Registration is OPEN!

Happy New Year everyone!

Our registration is open! We are working with Active.com to collect all the information and you will be required to create an account with them before finalizing your registration. Please read all the information found here before registering: http://www.marinetech.org/registration/
There is quite a bit of information for the Mentor to create a team, the students to join a team and some info for additional mentors. Please read this first!

Additionally, please remember that only one team per organization per class is allowed this year. If you want to have your second team placed on the wait list, send me an email. Do not register your second team.


Good luck and keep an eye out for additional information coming soon. We will have a few changes specific to the PNW Regional this year. We are finalizing those and getting them out to you soon.

Registration is NOT live yet

I know you are all hoping to register today but we are not yet live. As soon as I know I will be sure to send it out to everyone. Please remember that only one team will be allowed per class per organization. If you want to place a second team on the waitlist, please send me an email and let me know. Do not register your second team with Active.

All Mission Documents LIVE

All mission documents are now LIVE! These have all the information you need to build your ROV to the mission specs and a full description of the MATE request for proposals (RFP).

Read these carefully, if you have any questions please let us know or post them on the MATE forum.

EXPLORER - http://www.marinetech.org/explorer_2015/

RANGER - http://www.marinetech.org/ranger_2015/

NAVIGATOR - http://www.marinetech.org/navigator_2015/

SCOUT - http://www.marinetech.org/scout_2015/

It is very important that you read every page of these documents. Each class has specific requirements for their vehicle (safety, power, pneumatic/hydraulic, size, etc.) and we will strictly hold to these requirements.

Shareholders Meeting Info

Hi all,

A quick update for you from our shareholders meeting. This is a group of mentors, volunteers and parents that are helping to improve the Pacific Northwest Regional. We met just before Halloween and had a fantastic discussion about the future of our competition.

The first issue we had to discuss was regarding the number of teams that can participate. Due to the nature and organization of our Regional competition, we completely max out the venue with 48 teams. Last year we had a limited trial of a new class, Navigator, which fits between the Scout and Ranger classes. It was a success and we had many mentors requesting access for the next year. As such, we are limiting the number of teams allowed into each class to 16. This is a decrease in number of teams for both Ranger and Scout and I expect registration to fill very quickly (Should open December 12th, I'll keep you posted). Secondly, since we are such a popular competition, we have many more teams that want to participate than possible. We have typically allowed each organization to bring two teams per class. However, last year there were many organizations that were turned away entirely and were not able to compete. If our Regional gets 11 or more organizations to participate we are eligible to send our first and second place Ranger winners to the International competition. We had nine organizations last year but had to turn away a few because our space was full.... As such, it was decided that this year each organization will only be allowed one team per class. We encourage all organizations to have an internal runoff with their teams and send the best to our Regional. We may be available to help with your runoff, please let us know if you will be having one.

We also discussed one of the major issues that faces new mentors, practice sessions. We decided that we will hold a Troubleshooting Workshop on March 14th. We will have a morning (10 teams) and afternoon (10 teams) session in our large salt water test tank and have our smaller above ground pool available. We will have tools and be available for advice and to answer questions, however all work will be completed by students. We encourage teams that participate to help eachother and share their knowledge and experiences.

And finally, every year we have teams that drop out of the competition last minute. Of course anything can happen and we fully understand when circumstances occur that would keep a vehicle from getting in the water. However these drop outs cause many logistical issues for the competition organizers and volunteers. We would like to encourage mentors to remind their students that there are quite a lot of points that can be earned without the vehicle ever getting wet. Half of the total points for the competition come from the Engineering Presentation and Poster. It is very educational for a team to present their vehicle, even if it is unable to participate in the missions. There are also many aspects of the mission where points can be scored even if the maneuverability of the vehicle is compromised. Basically, by offering these simple points we are trying to encourage students to engage with the other teams, volunteers and judges to learn how they can better compete next year. If your team is having difficulties early, please let me know as soon as possible so that a team on the wait list can be offered your place. Please encourage your students to attend the competition as spectators. If something catastropic happens with your vehicle just before competition, please let me know as soon as possible and please come with your team and your ROV in whatever stage it may be in. Encourage your students to participate as much as they can with what they have.

16 teams per class
1 team per organization per class
March 14th, Troubleshooting Workshop
Bring your team to competition, even if your ROV explodes the night before.