STEM Competition at Harris Corporation on Thursday
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – A total of 18 teams from six high schools in Florida and New Jersey battled it out on virtual sailing race courses at Harris Corporation Thursday, with the OpenSorcerers team from Edgewood Jr./Sr. High School in Merritt Island, Florida, taking top honors.
The team won the seventh Harris Student Design Challenge, which took place in Palm Bay and Clifton, New Jersey, through a video link.
About 70 students participated in the event, which is aimed at supporting Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education and careers in high tech industries like aerospace.
This year’s event, called SailSim II, was a team challenge in which students created a program to sail virtual sailboats through seven challenging courses to reach a goal while avoiding obstacles. Some teams programmed manual navigation while others programmed artificial intelligence or machine learning.
“SailSim’s pretty fun,” said Melbourne High School Student Matthew Ibonnet.
“You get to hang out with your friends, collaborate and meet new people. An all-around great experience and I definitely would do it again.”
The Florida schools were Edgewood Jr./Sr. High School, Palm Bay High School, West Shore Jr./Sr. High School, Melbourne High School and Viera High School. In New Jersey, the competition consisted of three teams from Passaic High School.
The competition was set up to have an overall winner in addition to other winners in each state. The SeaTurtle team from Passaic High School won the New Jersey competition, and SeaFire from Palm Bay High School won the Florida division.
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