Community Stewardship

Eagan High School STEM Students

Gopher Resource Visits Local ‘Electrobotics’ Team for Tech Talk and Demos

Using innovation to advance sustainable lead battery recycling is a top priority for Gopher Resource. We collaborate with STEM research partners around the world. Recently, we had an opportunity to talk tech with some very bright students close to home.

Employees of Gopher Resource in Eagan stopped by Eagan High School to meet with the ‘Electrobotics’ team for a robust exchange of high-tech tools and methods. The students participate in FTC (FIRST®  Tech Challenge), a global robotics program for middle- and high-schoolers. FTC’s goal is to encourage teams to design, build and code robots to compete in tournaments

Students Show-and-Tell Their Smarts

While visiting with Gopher Resource, the students presented the rules and strategy for the FTC robotics competition. Then they demonstrated how to drive and control this year’s robot. They took turns explaining the role each member plays in competition.

James Dahlstrom, the Director of Process Engineering at Gopher Resource, was at the gathering. He was impressed with how knowledgeable the students were.

“They did a fantastic job fielding questions about their robot and the competition, from reliability to spare parts to challenges faced on the field,” Dahlstrom said.

Gopher Resource Shares Some of Its Innovation and Engineering

The visit included Gopher Resource sharing about their advanced lead battery recycling process. Gopher Resource Research and Development Engineering Manager Tim Schott talked about the company’s innovative robotics and automation. He explained how the skills the students are developing can be applied to industry.

“Many of the motors, sensors and programming logic in their robot are simply smaller versions of what Gopher Resource uses,” Schott added. The students were also given a live demonstration on PLC programming.

“We learned about 3D scanning for robot projects and where robots are used in recycling car batteries,” the group wrote on its website. “We also learned about CAD, programmable logic controllers for the control of sequencing and robotic arms, thermal imaging, and detecting wear and tear on equipment.”

About FTC

Each year, FTC announces a new theme that includes different challenges, obstacles and goals. Using a small budget, student teams create a robot to navigate an obstacle course and earn points in tournaments. In each theme, there are many challenges where teams can gain or lose points. Watch this fun FTC video for details.

We Love STEM Students

Gopher Resource takes its community responsibilities seriously. We truly enjoyed speaking with this inspiring group of students and watching them work their robot. It’s a delight being one of the team’s sponsors and fans.

Learn more about FIRST Tech Challenge

Visit Their Website