The AAPS team known as “Titanium Beasts,” which is a part of AA4STEM-4H, is one of 20 semi-finalist teams to advance to the Seventh Annual FIRST® LEGO® League Global Innovation Award in Washington, D.C. June 18-20.
All semi-finalists will participate in a two-day, hands-on innovation event at the Kellogg Conference Center, which culminates in the awarding of the top prize of $20,000 to continue work on their inventions. Two runners-up will take home $5,000 each.
“Titanium Beasts” was selected from entries from 30 countries for their project innovative solution, the “Bee ALERT+” (patent pending) that demonstrated originality while having the potential to add significant value in the world.
“Titanium Beasts” includes sixth graders Anjalika Dandamudi (East Arbor Charter Academy), Arjun Bharadwaj (Forsythe Middle School), Ashmit Deb, Bavani Vijay, Ryan Wang, Sakthi Vijay (Slauson Middle school), Ganesh Palaniappan, Varsha Reddy (Clague Middle School), and third grader Arvind Bharadwaj from Haisley Elementary.
The FIRST LEGO League challenge consists of robotic competition along with a research project based on an annual theme on real world problems. This year, the theme was “Animal Allies.” After much brainstorming, the team decided to design a solution to facilitate Honeybee farming. Varroa mites are one of the leading causes for honey bee population decline. In order to detect infestation and inspect the health of the hive, beekeepers adopt a manual process of examining the hives, which is tedious and time-consuming.
The team designed “Bee ALERT+”—an early Varroa mite detection and beehive inspection system. The solution uses an integrated system of PIR motion sensor, camera, Raspberry Pi, light, and mirror. The team is preparing and improving upon the solution to compete at the semi-finals event at Washington DC. They hope to raise enough funds through the competition and sponsors to fund production and realize their dreams.
Despite being a rookie robotics team, the team won the first place for “Innovative Solution Award” at the Michigan State Championship and received an invitation to submit their innovation for consideration to the Global Innovation Award. The team worked further and secured an entry into the semi-finals to be held in Washington DC.