LTU professor to lead American robotics team to Sochi

Release Date: November 17, 2014
Mars Colony

LTU seniors John Marnon and Phil Bigos gave a demonstration during the WRO national finals held at Ridler Field House..

Lawrence Tech students Phil Bigos and John Marnon will compete in the College Division when Computer Science Professor CJ Chung leads the first American team to compete in the World Robot Olympiad, which will be held in Sochi, Russia, Nov. 21-23. Both LTU students are majoring in robotics engineering.

This is the first year that the United States will have teams competing at WRO. Chung agreed to coordinate the national effort, and both the state finals and the national finals were held at LTU.

“Mars Colony” is the challenge in the College Division. Two opposing robots compete on the field in opposite directions to harvest and deliver different colored balls that represent delivering minerals to factories on the surface of Mars. The optional fourth waypoint can be completed for an additional bonus. Points are awarded for deliveries made, modified by the time to complete the course and the shared waypoint bonus.

For more information on WRO, go to

Team LTU is sponsored by the LTU’s Department of Math and Computer Science, Cadillac, SoarTech, LEGO Education, the Robofest office, the LTU College of Arts and Sciences, and the QUEST program in the College of Arts and Sciences.


Appearing on the WXYZ Saturday morning news show on Nov. 15 were (L-R) high school students James Xue, Charles Liu and Christopher Geng, WXYZ anchor Anu Prakash, and LTO Professor CJ Chung.

Another team representing the United States is Robocruisers S, Charles Liu, a junior at Canton Salem High School, and Christopher Geng and James Xue, juniors at Northville High School.

On Saturday and again on Monday, they appeared on WXYZ TV-7 to discuss their trip to the WRO in Sochi, Russia.

Two other teams from Michigan and three teams from New York are also making the trip to Russia to represent the United States in the WRO competition.





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