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RGU offers school pupils ROV challenge

Published by , Senior Editor
World Pipelines,

Teams of school pupils will use miniature ROVs to go head to head in a competition at the Robert Gordon University (RGU) stand as part of this year’s Energise Your Future event at Offshore Europe. 

The fun competition, which takes place today, will see the teams battling it out with their underwater robots to recover as many objects as possible in their allotted time, with the winning team taking home the prize. 


Teams will have to work together as they navigate the water tank in an environmental clean-up simulation, searching for coloured tokens representing hazardous materials and relying on their teammates for encouragement and guidance. They must also discuss tactics at the start of challenge and decide on whether opposing groups should help one another.


Opito’s ‘Energise Your Future’ events bring together local school pupils and the oil and gas industry to inspire the next generation.


The ROV challenge helps demonstrate how the industry and engineering sectors depend on planning, teamwork and communication to achieve results and also aims to show that competitors sometimes have to work together to be mutually successful.


As co-ordinators of the annual MATE (Marine Advanced Technology Education) Scotland ROV Challenge for secondary schools across Scotland, RGU has extensive experience in promoting the educational aspects of ROV design and operation. The university also runs a number of activities at the Techfest festival of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), British Science Week and other events. The Offshore Europe challenge is based on one of the tasks from this year’s International MATE ROV Competition.


Graeme Dunbar, senior lecturer at RGU’s School of Engineering, who will be running the ROV competition at Offshore Europe said: “RGU is proud to be part of the International MATE programme. It is an exciting initiative for secondary schools which encourages teams to ‘think as yourselves as entrepreneurs’. It develops not just the STEM skills but teamwork and communication. It helps prepare participants for the world of work and for further study. 


“For the lucky winners of the regional contests, going on to the international final to meet and compete with over 1000 other young people from 60 or more teams from around the world is a life-changing opportunity.”


RGU will is exhibiting as part of the Aberdeen City and Shire Exhibition Stand (2C20), at the annual Offshore Europe exhibition. 

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