From Brazil to San Francisco
By Marco Meggiolaro
FIGURE 1. RioBotz at RoboGames 2006.
Our combat robot team RioBotz can be divided into two timelines: B.R. and A.R. – Before
RoboGames and After RoboGames. We have been competing with combat robots since
2003, starting with a lousy (though beloved) middleweight named Lacraia, that had an
“amazing” 1 mm thick aluminum armor (so as not to go over the weight limit). This all
started when a few of my college students asked me to help them build a combot. I had
built robots before, but never to be sent into combat or to have a strict weight limit. This
was new to both me and my students. After a lot of learning, broken parts, and reading
all available books on combots, we achieved our first significant result the following
year, winning the Brazilian nationals with the middleweight spinner Ciclone.
36 SERVO 03.2010