Virginia Tech takes top prizes in compressed air competition

The school’s compressed air-powered inspection robot earned the win in the Compressed Air and Gas Institute’s annual national contest
By Plant Engineering Staff April 4, 2008

Two Virginia Tech placed at the top of the 2007-2008 National Innovation Awards conducted by the Compressed Air & Gas Institute .
Team CIRCA %%MDASSML%% Climbing Inspection Robot with Compressed Air %%MDASSML%% took top honors with their project that used compressed air to power a serpentine robot designed for inspecting unsafe or hard-to-reach areas such as bridge structures, tall utility poles, or scaffolding or girders in construction sites.
For their innovative design, Team CIRCA members David McDowell, Cory Kaser, Nicholas Thayer, and Florian Böss, and advisors Dennis Hong and Gabriel Goldman, will divide $2,500 in prize money. Their effort also earned $8,000 for their school.
Second place was awarded to Team Turbocharger, also Milwaukee School of Engineering . Their entry, the Saucer Tosser, is a mechanism that accelerates a clay disc through the air with the use of a compressed piston, for use in clay pigeon shooting.