Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
Online Challenges

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) is a global semiconductor design and manufacturing company that develops analog ICs and embedded processors. By employing the world's brightest minds, TI creates innovations that shape the future of technology. TI is helping more than 100,000 customers transform the future, today.

Sponsor

Electronics Online Challenge Sponsored by Texas Instruments

Back by popular demand! Texas Instruments (TI) is one of the largest semiconductor design and manufacturing companies in the world. That means we make amazing technology that is inside many of the most innovative electronic products you use every day. For example, you may not have realized it but TI technology is at the heart of the VEX IQ controller and many TI components are used inside the device. We want to challenge you to look at your world with the eyes of an engineer and explore the inner-workings of an electronic device of your choice. Once you choose a product, you will deconstruct the device, catalog what you find inside, and then submit a final report with your findings on what you discovered.

TI technology is also probably inside many of the electronic products you use every day. For example, TI components are inside the VEX IQ controller, BEATS headphones, GoPro Hero 4 camera, Tesla cars, and the Samsung Galaxy. We challenge you to find a device (we recommend choosing something you don’t mind breaking apart, for example an old phone), and carefully deconstruct the device so you can find out what electronic components are inside. Most semiconductor chips are labeled with the company name and component name. Then conduct online research to discover what the component does and what its role might be within the entire system of the electronic device.

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Smart phone, tablet or mobile device
  • Camera, voice recorder, video camera, tv remote
  • Headphones, speakers, music player
  • Watch, Pedometer, GPS navigator, Garage door opener
  • Computer components like mouse, monitor, keyboard

SAFETY TIPS: Before starting this challenge, make sure to have your chosen device approved by your team coach/leader/mentor/parent for safety purposes. Also note that some devices contain capacitors that hold a charge and extreme caution should be used. Any electrical device that contains a power source must be disconnected or removed before disassembly (unplug all cords and remove all batteries). You must wear safety glasses during the disassembly process.

 

Grade Level Requirements
Elementary School Middle School High School College / University No Grade Level Restrictions
Program Requirements
VEX IQ Challenge VEX Robotics Competition VEX U REC Foundation Aerial Drones Competition VEX AI Competition - High School VEX AI Competition - University

Prizes

  • 1st: Electronics Online Challenge Sponsored by Texas Instruments Award, Graphing Calculator & TI Swag* that will include a t-shirt and more; $750 vexrobotics.com gift certificate, and automatic team qualification for this season's VEX Robotics World Championship.
  • 2nd: Graphing Calculator & TI Swag* that will include a t-shirt and more; $500 vexrobotics.com gift certificate.
  • 3rd: TI Swag* that will include a t-shirt and more; $250 vexrobotics.com gift certificate.

*sponsor determines "swag"

Eligibility

  • Entrant grade range: Elementary school, middle school, high school, university.
  • VEX Robotics Competition team requirement: Entry must be from a VEX IQ Challenge, VEX Robotics Competition, VEX AI, RAD or VEX U team registered for the current season.
  • Entries submitted in previous Online Challenges are not eligible for submission.
  • Only one entry is permitted by the same team. However, each team in a multi-team school or club program may submit an entry. For example, teams 123A and 123B could each submit an entry, but team 123A could not submit two entries.

Requirements

These are the minimum requirements for this challenge. Failure to fulfill any of these requirements will result in your entry being disqualified from advancing to Finalist.

  • Final Summary Report (up to 500 words) in PDF format only:
    • Introduction identifying the electronic device you selected and why.
    • Summary of the chips and components you found inside. Were any TI components?
    • Research findings of what these components do and the role they play in the system.
    • Conclusion. What were the lessons you learned from this experiment?
  • In addition to the final report, you may add short captions to your photos (not more than 25 words each) and parts lists of components that you have discovered. These do NOT count against the 500 word limit for the summary report.
  • Include at least four (4) photographs of you and/or your project (does not count towards length).
  • Upload the Final Summary Report document and all supporting photos (maximum file size: 20MB per photo) directly to this online challenge site during the submission process. It is highly recommended that you include photos in the PDF report, rather than uploading them separately.

The “Judging Information” section below will provide additional guidance on how your project will be evaluated.

READ CAREFULLY: UPLOAD INSTRUCTIONS

  • Instructions to begin:
    • Click the green Enter Challenge button on the right side of the screen.
    • Fill out the submission form and Click Save.
  • Instructions to upload your Final Report (must be in PDF format):
    • Click the blue Files/Images button in the upper right of the screen.
    • Drag/Drop your PDF report into the Upload a File box.
    • Be sure to edit the Display Name and file information according to the Requirements for this challenge.
    • Save your edits and click Update on the entry screen.
    • Your submission will now show when you click the blue All Entries button to view the challenge entries.

SAFETY TIPS: Before starting this challenge, make sure to have your chosen device approved by your team coach/leader/mentor/parent for safety purposes. Also note that some devices contain capacitors that hold a charge, and extreme caution should be used if the device has a capacitor. Any electrical device that contains a power source must be disconnected or removed before disassembly (unplug all cords and remove all batteries). You must wear safety glasses during the disassembly process

Judging Information

Judges will select at ten finalists from the submitted entries and will take community voting results into account for tie breaker only. The finalist submissions will then be judged by additional selected professionals whose scores will be combined with the preliminary-round judges’ scores to determine the winner of this Online Challenge.

Evaluation

  • Clear presentation of findings and organization of content.
  • Thoroughness of research on the components you found.
  • Quality of writing, spelling, and grammar.
  • Visual documentary of your project through the photographs: quality and thoroughness of the images.

Deadline Information

Current time:
Sat, Sep 26, 2020 12:33 PM CDT

Opens:

Tue, Sep 1, 2020 9:00 AM CDT

Closes:

Tue, Dec 8, 2020 12:00 PM CST

Voting Ends:

Tue, Dec 15, 2020 12:00 PM CST