Filipino basketball-inspired robotics heralds return of Nat’l Student Science Contest

Filipino basketball-inspired robotics
Tagisang Robotics 2.0 will see basketball robots shooting sepak takraw balls towards their respective goals. Credits to DOST.

As the 82nd University Athletics Association of the Philippines (UAAP) basketball season winds down, Filipino basketball fans would surely appreciate and enjoy the upcoming new kind of basketball competition involving robotics science that is heating up and about to start on November 19-20, 2019.

Dubbed as Tagisang Robotics 2.0, the basketball varsity-type robotics competition will mark the return of the tournaments that were last held from 2011 to 2014 and organized by the Department of Science and Technology-Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI).

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The national student science contest to be held at the Forum 2 of the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City will bring together 16 schools with robots designed and built by high school students that will maneuver their creations on the field/court and are expected to have precision shooting capabilities during the tournament proper.

The basketball robots will be shooting sepak takraw balls towards their respective goals.

The contest preparations began in September 2019 when kits containing robot parts were distributed to participating schools. Teams had two months to build their robots while undergoing technical training.

Filipino basketball-inspired robotics
Students from Rizal National Science High School measure resistances and voltages of circuits using multimeters included in their kit-of-parts as part of their training for the Tagisang Robotics Competition. Credits to DOST.

Each team is composed of four junior high school students and one teacher-coach. They will go through seven rounds of elimination matches to determine which teams will advance to the semi-finals and finals. Winners of the Best Team Award will receive Php 100,000 cash prize and the winning team’s coach will receive Php 30,000. The Best Alliance Award will bring home Php 150,000 while the winning alliance coaches will also get Php 15,000 each.

Dr. Josette Biyo, Director of the Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute, said, “We hope to spark students’ interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and in information and communications technology through Tagisang Robotics. We also look forward to having them apply as DOST scholars. But mostly, we’d like to make students see robotics as fun and engaging. It’s a good start in ensuring our country will have more robotics experts in the future.”

The 16 schools seeing action at the Tagisang Robotics 2019 are:

  • Bangkal High School
  • Benigno “Ninoy” S. Aquino High School
  • Caloocan National Science and Technology High School
  • Makati Science High School
  • Malabon National High School
  • Manila Science High School
  • Marcelo H. del Pilar National High School
  • Muntinlupa National High School – Main
  • Pasig City Science High School
  • Philippine Science High School Main Campus
  • Pitogo High School
  • Rizal High School
  • Rizal National Science High School
  • Sen. Renato “Compañero” Cayetano Memorial Science & Technology High School
  • Taguig Science High School
  • Valenzuela School of Math and Science

The Philippines’ varsity basketball had recently seen a surge of cheering, praying, and singing crowds that trooped to the UAAP men’s basketball tournament games to watch the phenomenal rise of the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons as a powerhouse team with Kobe Paras igniting hopes of a repeat of his father Benjie Paras-led team that last won a championship for the state university in 1986, joined by UAAP champion Ricci Rivero, and the UP homegrown squad that brought the team to its first finals appearance at the UAAP Season 81 in 2018.

Filipino students have been excelling in robotics competitions around the world and winning gold medals, among them, students of Dr. Yanga Colleges who won gold in the World Robot Olympiad in Hungary and in Denmark, and the at the FIRST LEGO League Open.

SEND well wishes in the comments below to the Filipino student teams who will compete in the basketball robotics tournament and cheers to DOST for re-igniting science competitions!

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Eldan is an experienced online content writer who finds fulfillment in sharing the good side of the news to Filipinos.