In a previous post, the Samtec blog team interviewed the team at Phalanx Robotics in their quest to win BattleBots in 2020. In this next portion of the interview, Andrew Godfrey from Phalanx adds more detail on that process.
Phalanx Robotics Interview
Matt Burns: Briefly, what are some of the other more popular styles or designs of BattleBots?
Andrew Godfrey: I love how open the BattleBots rules are. Key design concerns are participant safety and maintaining BattleBox integrity. No acid, napalm, high explosives, EMP’s, smoke screens, or entanglement devices are allowed. You’ll find bots using wedges, lifters, or grabbers to maintain control of the fights while using their opponents’ weapons against them.
Some bots will have overhead weapons like hammers, spear, or spinning disc. Other heavier bots use stationary spinning weapons to transfer as much destructive energy to their opponent as possible. Finally, flipper bots (my biased personal favorite!) throw the opponent out of the arena or high in the air to cause substantial damage on impact.
This is just a really brief description. Of course, there are many combinations of weapons bots can have: flying drones to distract the opponent, multibot setups, flamethrowers, etc.! Plus, there are weapon types I didn’t even mention here. You never know what an innovative team may bring to a fight!
MB: What roles do sponsors like Samtec play in the bot-building process?
AG: I’m not sure it would have been possible for our team to build Aegis and compete if it weren’t for sponsors like Samtec, Fibre Glast, WCI and Owings Patterns. BattleBots is in no way a profitable as most teams end up in the red. We’ll come out even if we’re lucky.
Samtec has given us access to the Maker13 workspace and donated a lot of electronic components. They helped us with the aesthetic design of Aegis and helped to support us financially. Our custom-designed PCBs for Aegis do incorporate lots of Samtec manufactured components.
MB: Thanks for that! What are your goals for the upcoming competition?
AG: This will be the strangest BattleBots tournament in history. The COVID-19 outbreak turned every aspect of the tournament on its head. As a rookie team, we expect the competition to be a huge learning experience. Some of the competition have been fighting robots since we were still in diapers!
With that being said, our goal is to win as many fights as possible while sustaining as little damage as we can. Standard strategy for flipper bots applies to us: keep to the fight at the perimeter of the BattleBox to provide protection and increase our chance of launching competitors out of the arena. Our goal is to establish ourselves as a serious contender by inflicting as much damage as possible! 😊
For More Information
Stay tuned to the Samtec blog for further updates on Aegis and BattleBots! Also, check out our latest Micro Rugged Solutions Guide. These interconnect solutions are ideally for bots and similar applications.