Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
Online Challenges

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.



Eletronics Online Challenge


We disassembled a Samsung POWERbot electronic vacuum for the Texas Instruments Electronics Challenge. We chose to disassemble the vacuum because we would learn about more modern technology. Learning about modern technology would be more useful in the real world because everything nowadays is more digital and less mechanical. We would also have a better chance of applying what we learned to build our own robots that do tasks.

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Motorola MPx220 Teardown


I'm Kennedy Middleton, a 6th grader, from team 74177R.

I chose a Motorola flip phone to tear down. I found it sitting around our house and I had never seen a phone like this before. I thought it would be cool to take it apart.


* this is a duplicate entry to replace Entry ID 8202, because we were locked out of our account accidentally.

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Deconstruction of a VEX Transmitter and Receiver


For this project, we decided to deconstruct a Vex Transmitter and Receiver. Due to the long history of our club, we have a lot of old Vex parts lying around. We ended up taking apart this 2006 version of a controller so we can see the improvements not just visually on the outside, but also for the components on the inside.

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Team 55885X Electronics Challenge


This is team 55885X's report on the RiTECH 4100 DvD player.

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Team 8059Z's Electronics Online Challenge...


Ever since we joined the 8059 VEX Robotics team, we have used the VEX ARM® Cortex®-based Microcontroller (Cortex) extensively and its inner workings have always intrigued us. When we first heard about the TI Challenge, we did not hesitate to use this opportunity to break down and examine the components of the Cortex. After being granted permission to break down the Cortex we got to work, starting by researching basic electronic components and functions. We took photographs of all the individual components while we were disassembling the Cortex.

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36637A - Hard Disk


In conducting this research project, we discovered a lot important components and the true electrical function of them. We had heard of before, but never looked into. While this device is not associated with Texas Instruments, we learned more about the very global path that the products we use must travel in order to make it into our possession and how even the simplest of devices is very complex on the inside. We also concluded how the hard disk works.

1- Commander intervention IC (lfh-88i6540) to perform its processors where the command gives reading or writing...


Awkward Cats 1069K Texas Instruments Challenge


Hi! We're Piper, Mia, Indira, and Milo and we are the Awkward Cats from Berthoud Robotics Club. We chose to dissasemble the Que! Fire CD RW for this project. Some of our challenges we faced were meeting virtually because of Covid and that they device is older, so we had a hard time looking up some of the components. We learned a lot of new things and we hope you like our report! 

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Deconstructing Cisco Router


With the isolation situation from each of our team members, performing through ZOOM meetings for the deconstruction of a daily used electronic device which was approved by our mentor was a challenge all its own. Each member was able to research the purpose & roles of the inner workings of the chips and components within our device. Our document includes: Final Summary with Introduction, Summary, Research findings and conclusion of Lessons learned; photograph of exterior, interior and internal components including captions; and research documentation related to each component. Thank you...


3204C Electronics Challenge


3204C Team entry to VEX Electronics online challenge.

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