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Robots. Don't. Quit.


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Robots. Don't. Quit.


 

The IRS

The Issaquah Robotics Society, nicknamed the IRS, is a robotics team based out of Issaquah High School in Washington State. We are FRC team number 1318 with FIRST, whose mission is to promote science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The IRS was founded in 2003 and has been building robots ever since. Equipped with motivation, knowledge, and our signature yellow ties, we continue to inspire students and our community.

 
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Learning


Mentors from real technology companies teach us robotics skills, including mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, business, marketing, competitive strategy, design, 3D modeling, and programming.

Learning


Mentors from real technology companies teach us robotics skills, including mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, business, marketing, competitive strategy, design, 3D modeling, and programming.

Our Season

Our year has four seasons: fall training season, winter build season, spring competition season, and summer off-season. Student members pursue different tasks during each one of these. Over the fall training season, veterans partner with mentors to teach rookie members basic robotics skills. Build season is where these skills get applied. Staring in January, we receive the rules of the year's FRC game and we get to work. We have only six weeks to design and build a robot from scratch, so we meet up to five times a week. March through April, our robot competes at locations all across the United States. Members delve into robot strategy, data analysis, maintenance, presentations, and robot driving. If we do well, we attend the world championship. Finally, during the summer off-season, the team pursues new, exploratory projects without the stress of school. This is when the majority of community outreach takes place. Though robotics is year-round, students aren't expected to attend every single meeting. 

More Than Robots

Anyone can join the IRS and we try to give everyone something to do. We adapt every year to improve training and to make sure everyone finds a place on the team. Managing a robotics team on this scale can be difficult and expensive, so our team operates like a small business to stay afloat. This means that besides our technical subteams, we have a business team as well. They write business plans, organize events, design flyers, and manage funds. The IRS can serve as a small-scale model of a real-world business setting, providing invaluable experience. Additionally, our members organize volunteer events in the Issaquah community to spread the message of FIRST and STEM. FIRST gives awards for these non-technical skills, so students on these subteams are recognized for their efforts and actively contribute to the team's success.

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Building


We're not just building robots, we're building life-long skills and friendships.

Building


We're not just building robots, we're building life-long skills and friendships.

The Subteams

Mechanical

From working with power tools to assembling drive trains, this subteam is behind the mechanisms and assembly of our robots. While everyone in the team helps with prototypes, these folks know mechanical design, and will be behind the final robot after stepping through the engineering process. 

Electrical

A robot wouldn't be very useful without a control system, and our electronics subteam specializes in that. From stripping wires to soldering, they make sure our microcontroller computer is able to control our motors and pneumatics. Their robust circuit boards allow us to move the robot precisely.

Programming

This subteam makes sure that we can actually control the robot. Working with Java and the WPI Robotics Library, they make our robot function under both human and autonomous control. In addition to programming joystick controls, they also delve into vision processing and app development. 

CAD

The Computer-Aided Design (CAD) subteam works with software to create full 3D models of our robots' parts. This process is integral to the successful design of our robots, ensuring that all parts are efficient and safe.

Scouting

Using data on the game, our robot, and other teams, the scouting subteam creates a strategy for our competitions. To do this, they write custom software for data collection, and forge relationships with other FRC teams.

Business

This subteam works behind-the-scenes to ensure that the team runs smoothly. They have many jobs, including fundraising, corporate outreach, and marketing. They write everything from our business plan to our social media posts.

IRS members in the pits at competition

The 2015-2016 drive team

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Inspiring


We inspire the local community through outreach programs such as Taking FIRST to the Streets, the ART Project, and FIRST mentoring.

Inspiring


We inspire the local community through outreach programs such as Taking FIRST to the Streets, the ART Project, and FIRST mentoring.

 

The Issaquah Robotics Society is always up-and-about in the community. Team 1318 is "Taking FIRST to the Streets." We aren't just at science fairs, but also at events where robotics is not usually seen, such as art walks, community festivals, and Salmon Days (which is the largest festival in Washington State). Sometimes we join other FRC teams at these outreach events. The IRS helps and inspires dozens of other robotics teams, whether they work with Lego or sheet metal. 

Recently, we started the ART Project, aimed at community service,mentoring teams, and event volunteering. We work on these projects using the A.R.T. (Audit, Respond, Teach) method: first we audit the situation by identifying the problem, next we respond to the problem by fixing it, and then we teach our method of solving in order to fix future problems. We accept community requests and have assisted in numerous odd-job projects.