CLINTON, N.C. -- Cherry Point Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron Explosive Ordnance Disposal hosted a show-and-tell at Clinton High School, Oct. 12. The EOD Marines showcased the practical application of robots in today’s society.
“Having the Marines here shows the students the real world application to what they are learning,” said Susan Kennedy, the robotics teacher at Clinton High School. “Being in a rural area they don’t get the exposure that students would get in a big city. Experiences like this show what the military has to offer and gives them exposure to some outside influences.”
The Marines used their time at Clinton to show off three different robots. Two of the three classes were from Clinton High, the third was the eighth grade class from Samson Middle School.
First was the 510 Packbot made by iRobot. The Packbot is a lightweight tracked robot, Newer versions of the Packbot can be carried by infantry units because of its size and mobility.
The second robot shown was the TALON, a military ordnance disposal robot, made by Foster-Miller. The TALON is used by EOD and bomb squads in the U.S. and deployed environments to unarm improvised explosive devises in areas like Iraq and Afghanistan.
The third robot was the Remotec ANDROS F6-A remote ordnance neutralization system. The RONS is an unmanned remote bomb disposal robot used by the military as well as SWAT teams. Because of its enormous size and weight the robot is only used in the U.S. The RONS weighs in at an estimated 485 pounds according to www.militaryfactory.com.
“It’s good for the students to see how programs in school can transfer into opportunities after they graduate,” said Gunnery Sgt. Brian Diaz, an explosive ordnance disposal technician. “Hopefully this will inspire these students to stick with the robotics program and one day go into a company that builds or work with them.”
During the show case the robotics students displayed their class projects.
The students revealed their latest project from the VEX robotics kit.
VEX robotics is a versatile kit that gives the students the basic tools to create their own robot according to the www.robotshop.com website.
“This is incredible,” said Rozell Venaboe, a 17-year-old senior at Clinton and one of three inaugural students in Clinton’s robotics class.
“We’ve built four robots so far and we built them from the bottom up. I really like it so far and I’m going to keep building them. Seeing what the Marines do has got me interested in the military.”