MATE Center’s International Student ROV Competition

MATE International Competition 2009.  A student built ROV carrying out a "rescue mission" on a troubled submarine. Photo courtesy of VideoRay / Steve Van Meter.

MATE International Competition ROV 2009. A student built ROV carrying out a "rescue mission" on a troubled submarine. Photo courtesy of VideoRay / Steve Van Meter.

The Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center’s International Student ROV Competition just occurred in Buzzard’s Bay, Mass.  This is the competition for those who already won in 16 regional competitions.  The competition featured 54 student teams representing middle schools, high schools, home schools, community colleges, universities, after-school clubs, outreach programs, and 4-H and Scout clubs, from five countries.

This year MATE worked with OceanWorks International and the Deep Submergence Systems Office at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard to develop the missions focusing on real submarine rescue training exercise. Student teams were required to build and pilot ROV’s to inspect a simulated submarine for damage, deliver emergency supplies, and replenish the onboard air supply, among other tasks.

The winners of the Explorer Class were Long Beach City College of Long Beach, Calif who took first and are vetrans of the competition earning top ranks in engineering, presentation, and performance as well as being the only team to complete all the pool missions.  Second place went to Flower Mound Robotics of Flower Mound, Texas and third when to Sea-Tech 4-H Club of Skagit County, Washington.  The team also won the “Sharkpedo” award for innovation and originality, and was recognized for being the most safety-conscious team.

The Ranger Class was taken by the Canadians with Dalbrae Academy of Mabou, Nova Scotia taking first place aand Heritage Collegiate of Lethbridge, Newfoundland taking second.  But my hold stomping grounds took third place.  Monterey Academy of Oceanographic Sciences of Monterey, Calif. earned overall third place. Team member James Caress received one of three Ranger class “Engineering MVP” awards.

Students obviously bringing thier A game to the MATE International ROV Competition 2009.  Photo courtesy of VideoRay / Steve Van Meter.

Students obviously bringing an A game to the MATE International ROV Competition 2009. Photo courtesy of VideoRay / Steve Van Meter.

Dr. M (1746 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, a National Science Foundation supported initiative. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (http://deepseanews.com/), a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web. His forthcoming book, Science of the South (http://www.scienceofthesouth.com/), connects cultural icons of South such as pecan pie with the science behind them.


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