MassRobotics hosted a group of more than 60 second- and third-year engineering students from Xidian University, Northwestern Polytechnical University and Shenzhen University. After receiving a robotics landscape overview from Executive Director Tom Ryden, the group was split up into three smaller groups to learn about and get hands-on experience in three different areas of robotics.

Russell Nickerson, MassRobotics’ Lab Manager, showed how easy it is to program a collaborative robot arm, the Universal UR5, which is currently used in many manufacturing scenarios. By using a touch screen, students were able to program the robot arm to move without any prior knowlege.

Khalif Mitchell, MassRobotics’ Community Support Representative, described an educational robot from , and demonstrated how to learn programming in a step by step process. Root is a little robot, coding companion, that grows with you from pre-readers through high school and helps students learn problem solving. Different levels support: Graphical blocks that teach essential logic skills of coding, Hybrid drag and drop language for building computational fluency and will soon have the structure and syntax of professional coding languages in Swift, Python and JavaScript.

Tom Ryden spoke about the visiting NASA Valykrie robot and its mission. Student enjoyed taking photos with her! Students also were shown the 2 armed Baxter robot and were able to train it’s movements by mirroring how they physically moved the other arm. Another option included training it to perform a repetitive motion, through a simple teach routine.

We always enjoy showing off our robots to students!