ROV Competition

Join Us for the 2018 Wisconsin Regional MATE ROV Competition

April 29, 2018

What is the MATE ROV Competition?

The Wisconsin Regional MATE Competition uses underwater robots – also known as remotely operated vehicles or ROVs – to teach science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and prepare students for technical careers. MATE International created the ROV competition as a way to:

  • Engage students in STEM and expose them to science and technology careers
  • Encourage students to develop and apply technical, teamwork, and problem solving skills
  • Provide funds, materials, and technical expertise to support student learning provide industry with skilled individuals who can fill workforce needs

The MATE competition challenges K-12, community college, and university students from all over the world to design and build ROVs to tackle missions modeled after scenarios from the ocean workplace. The competition’s class structure of beginner, intermediate, and advanced complements the education pipeline by providing students with the opportunity to build upon their skills – and the application of those skills – as they engineer increasingly more complex ROVs for increasingly more complex mission tasks.

At the Wisconsin competition, in addition to engineering their ROVs, middle and high school students are required to prepare technical reports, marketing displays, and product presentations that are delivered to working professionals who serve as competition judges.

For additional information please visit the Wisconsin Regional MATE Competition website at

Basic Schedule for the WI Regional Competition

8:00am-8:30am Check In

8:30am-11:00 am COMPETITION

  • UWM Klotsche Center Pool—Safety Check, Product Demonstration (Vehicle Mission) ***TEAMS ONLY***
  • UWM School of Freshwater Sciences—Live Streaming Video of Klotsche Center Pool Activities, Marketing Displays, Product Presentations ***Open to the Public***

11:00am-12:00pm Lunch (meals provided for team members and volunteers)

12:00pm-4:00pm COMPETITION

  • UWM Klotsche Center Pool—Safety Check, Product Demonstration (Vehicle Mission) ***TEAMS ONLY***
  • UWM School of Freshwater Sciences—Live Streaming Video of Klotsche Center Pool Activities, Marketing Displays, Product Presentations ***Open to the Public***

5:00pm Closing Ceremony—Speaker & Awards—UWM School of Freshwater Sciences



JET CITY: Airport, Earthquakes, and Energy



The Pacific Northwest area of Washington State is known for its beautiful and lively geography, sitting between the Olympic and Cascade Mountain ranges, their snowcapped peaks hiding temporarily dormant volcanoes and tectonic plates prone to earthquake activity. The combinations of volcanic eruptions and earthquakes have shaped this piece of North America, raising the mountains and creating rivers via the snow melt that flow into deepwater lakes. Earthquakes also cause mudslides, landslides, and lahars that have wiped out large forested areas and resculpted the terrain. A fjord ties the Seattle area to the rest of the world through the Pacific Ocean. Known as Puget Sound, this fjord was formed by these same earth-moving forces. Puget Sound is also susceptible to another earthquake effect: the tsunami.

Seattle’s history reflects a wide variety of businesses based on the local geography and natural resources, beginning with logging, farming, and fishing and evolving to high-tech and bio-tech. In addition to this, Seattle is the birthplace of Starbucks, Microsoft, and Boeing, which is why Seattle is known as “Jet City.” This only adds to the popularity of the Seattle and Tacoma ports that started booming during the Alaska gold rush. These ports continue to be some of the busiest ports on the west coast today.

The Pacific Northwest has been developed and is constantly changing, but a general reverence for the areas rugged beauty has been a constant. In light of growing concern for the humankind’s impact on our world, people in the Pacific Northwest are leading efforts to research and quantify these effects. Brilliant young minds that grew into being on the cutting-edge of the manufacturing and high-tech industries are now coming together to develop renewable energy options and reduce the dependence on petroleum. Areas of previous industrial activity or environmental disasters are being restored. Invasive species are being removed, while both plant and animal native species are being reintroduced. Organized volunteers educate the public on how to responsibly enjoy all the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest – and to fight to keep it for all to enjoy for generations to come.


The Applied Physics Laboratory at the University of Washington has issued a request for proposals (RFP) for a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) and crew that can operate in the salt and fresh water areas in the Pacific Northwest. The specific tasks for the ROV and operators include:

  1. Locating the wreckage of a vintage airplane and returning its engine to the surface.
  2. Installing or recovering a seismometer.
  3. Installing a tidal turbine and instrumentation to monitor the environment

Before launch and operations, the ROV must complete a series of “product demonstrations” staged at a swimming pool at various regional locations. (Depth requirements vary depending on competition class; see SPECIFICATIONS below.) Companies that successfully complete the product demonstrations and deliver exceptional engineering and communication components (e.g. technical documentation, engineering presentations, and marketing displays) will be awarded the contract.