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SciTech Tuesday: The National WWII Museum’s 2017 Robotics Challenge

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On Saturday May 13th, 40 teams from Louisiana and Alabama gathered to compete and share their project designs in The Monuments Men–the theme for this year’s robotics challenge.

The robot competition involved students programming their Lego Mindstorms robots to complete 11 tasks. These tasks represented the efforts of the Monuments Men and others in Europe dedicated to saving the cultural heritage of Europe. For example, robots rescued paintings from boxcars, moved the Mona Lisa and a Nike statue from the Louvre, and cleared and posted sentries on damaged monuments.

Teams also designed bridges to carry their robots. This represented the effort to rebuild the bridges of Florence. As the German forces retreated they destroyed the bridges to slow the advancing Allies.

Awards are given annually for the best competitors in the robot competition, and for robot design, and project. In addition, judges pick a Grand Champion. The Grand Champion may or may not win at any of the individual events, but embodies the spirit of the challenge. This year’s Grand Champion team won, in addition to the usual trophy, copies of The Monuments Men, signed by author Robert Edsel. We thank Mr. Edsel for this generous contribution.

  • Grand Champion
    • St Michaels of Crowley, LA
  • Competition
    • 1st place-Tie between SJ Green Charter School of New Orleans and St Pius of Lafayette
    • 2nd place-St Theresa of Gonzales, LA
    • 3rd place-JLT Imaginations of Prairieville, LA
  • Design
    • 1st place-Our Lady of Fatima of Lafayette, LA
    • 2nd place-Kenner Discovery Health Sciences Academy of Kenner, LA
    • 3rd place-St Theresa of Gonzales, LA
  • Project
    • 1st place-Girls Scouts of Gonzales, LA
    • 2nd place-St George’s Episcopal of New Orleans, LA
    • 3rd place-Metairie Park Country Day School of Metairie, LA


Next year’s theme will be The Pelican State Goes to War, in honor of the opening of our traveling exhibit of the same name. It will take place May 12th 2018, and registration will open in January.

Thanks to Chevron, who sponsors the event and sends volunteers, and to Fontainebleu High’s RoboDawgs, who volunteer as referrees and table setters.


Posted by Rob Wallace, STEM Education Coordinator at The National WWII Museum

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