Robotics Education & Competition Foundation
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The Q&A is closed for the 2021-2022 season. Any rule changes or clarifications pertaining to the 2022 VEX Robotics World Championship will be included in the April 5 Game Manual Update. Teams attending VEX Worlds who wish to pre-submit questions for the driver's meeting should have received a contact form via email; if not, please contact your REC Foundation Team Engagement Manager for more information.

Official Q&A: VRC 2021-2022: Tipping Point

Usage Guidelines All Questions

Contact Field Element for determination of balanced platform - Driver station post, field monitors


UWAT
6-Feb-2022

Field Element – The foam field tiles, field perimeter, white tape, Platforms, and all supporting structures or accessories (such as driver station posts, field monitors, etc). Balanced - A Platform state. A Platform is considered Balanced if all of the following criteria are met at the end of a Match:

  1. The Platform is roughly parallel to the field.
  2. Both flat surfaces of the Platform hinges are contacting the Platform base, as shown in Figure 7.
  3. Robots and / or Scoring Objects contacting the Platform in their Alliance Home Zone are not also contacting any other Field Elements, such as foam field tiles or the field perimeter. a. For the purposes of this definition, contact is considered “transitive” through other Robots and Scoring Objects. For example, as shown in Figure 9, contact with a Mobile Goal that is resting on top of the field perimeter would not satisfy the definition of Balanced.
  • Field Specifications shows where the driver station posts can be mounted, is this position considered the "correct" mounting location and should be followed by all events? If so, and if the driver station posts is mounted at a "incorrect" location, would robot/scoring objects in contact with the driver post still counts as contact and thus making the platform unbalanced?
  • If the above is true, does the driver station post need to be mounted at the location specified in field specifications if the field is raised? This could affect robot design as some teams may design to carry mobile goals on the side of the robot which would be above the field perimeter and breaking the plane of the field but still be balanced, and seeing an "unexpected location" of driver station post at the event may not give enough times for teams to adapt design. Also it could cause some "would be balanced if the driver station post is elsewhere" matches.
  • Field Specifications doesn't show a place to mount field monitors. Some events choose to put monitors outside the field, not utilizing the bracket VEX sells and is NOT attached to the field. Does the use of mounting hardware affect whether the monitor counts as part of the field, or does any monitor displaying tournament manager treated as part of the field? If it is mounted at an unexpected location around the platform and robot/scoring objects are in contact with the field monitor, would that be considered contact and thus making platform unbalanced?

Link:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7hNGMBGxUw

For example, in the above event, the driver station post is mounted in the middle of the platform, different than in the field specification, which increases the chance teams' robot/scoring objects robots carry could contact the driver station post.

Answered by committee

Field Specifications shows where the driver station posts can be mounted, is this position considered the "correct" mounting location and should be followed by all events?

Yes, just as all other field setup attributes shown in Appendix A. The specific placement of the Driver Station Posts is intentional, to limit the risk of interference with Platforms.

If so, and if the driver station posts is mounted at a "incorrect" location, would robot/scoring objects in contact with the driver post still counts as contact and thus making the platform unbalanced?

Technically, yes. However, this could also be considered a Match Affecting "field fault", as described in G20, at the discretion of the Event Partner and the Head Referee. In this case, the incorrectly assembled field should be rectified, and the Match replayed.

If the above is true, does the driver station post need to be mounted at the location specified in field specifications if the field is raised? This could affect robot design as some teams may design to carry mobile goals on the side of the robot which would be above the field perimeter and breaking the plane of the field but still be balanced, and seeing an "unexpected location" of driver station post at the event may not give enough times for teams to adapt design. Also it could cause some "would be balanced if the driver station post is elsewhere" matches.

This concern is addressed by the following passage from Appendix A:

Field components may vary slightly from event to event. This is to be expected; teams will need to adapt accordingly. It is good design practice to create mechanisms capable of accommodating variances in the field and game pieces.

To answer your specific question: the decision whether or not to use the Driver Station Posts is considered an acceptable possible variance from event to event. Teams should be prepared to adapt accordingly.

Field Specifications doesn't show a place to mount field monitors. Some events choose to put monitors outside the field, not utilizing the bracket VEX sells and is NOT attached to the field. Does the use of mounting hardware affect whether the monitor counts as part of the field, or does any monitor displaying tournament manager treated as part of the field?

A display monitor is only considered a Field Element if it is attached to the field, either utilizing the official bracket or something similar. If it is not attached to the field, then it should just be considered something "outside of the field", like a wall. The following related Q&A would then apply:

https://www.robotevents.com/VRC/2021-2022/QA/888

If it is mounted at an unexpected location around the platform and robot/scoring objects are in contact with the field monitor, would that be considered contact and thus making platform unbalanced?

Yes. Unlike the Driver Station Posts, there is no defined location for any field monitors to be attached to the field, as they can vary from event to event. We would strongly advise against placing any field monitors directly near the Platforms.