Ranatra Fusca Awards

Laboratorium Pryzmat Gdansk
Triathlon Travels, Div II
Gdansk, Poland
This team combined drama and engineering in its Broadway-worthy performance full of contrast: black and white, good and evil, minimalism and sophistication. To elaborate on the theme, the team used a sophisticated quilling technique to illustrate racial tensions displayed via the vehicle’s license plate. Aside from its creative performance and style, the vehicle combined 66 wheels, 10 motors, & over 100 meters of electrical wiring to create a machine that moved in every direction with automated grace and precision.

Princeton H S A
Triathlon Travels, Div III
Princeton, NJ
This team showed exceptional creativity and risk-taking in the creation of their vehicle’s propulsion system and design.  The vehicle used a system of handmade wooden gears that was powered by a riveted rowing-machine style of propulsion.  The driver of the vehicle used his feet and legs to engage the propulsion system.  The gears could be easily changed to switch from forward to reverse motion, similar to a motorcycle clutch.  The vertical sawing motion had to engage three different sized saw tooth gears.  When one of the straps broke, the driver kept the vehicle going using only one leg in spite of how difficult it was to propel the vehicle in this way.  The judging team believes this team is worthy of a Ranatra Fusca award due to the extreme risk-taking nature and exceptional creativity of the team’s propulsion system and vehicle design.

Laboratorium Pryzmat Gdansk
Mockumentary! Seriously?, Division II
Gdansk, Poland
Humor was requested, but in a risky measure, the team departed from the overtly humorous intent of the problem in an avant-garde performance worthy of a professional modern theater troupe. With a larger than life abstract mask, the team members appeared as the eyes of the mask and used the eyes as a portal between aging and youth. Pictures in the eyes of the mask brought back memories of youthfulness. The team had the mask experience many emotions as one would as they gain wisdom with age. The design and engineering of the mask was a puzzle that showed the different elements that shape you throughout life. Hanging in suspense, Peter Pan literally flew through his interview via an engineering feat.

South Mecklenburg High School
A Stellar Hangout, Division III
Charlotte, NC
A versatile masterpiece, Desyre radiated unique artistic quality and original, risk-taking engineering. This large device conveyed the illusion of a live exotic bird to the audience. The team meticulously synchronized the multiple mechanisms, which allowed the puppet to perform coordinated and fluid movements just as if she were a real bird. Wings from the structure of an umbrella connected with a sinuous neck of dryer ducting, allowing every motion to convey her flirtatious and sassy personality.  The feathers from hand-painted seashells created a natural iridescence.  The artistry involved in the design of both the mechanics and the appearance of Desyre the Bird exemplified the creative spirit involved in repurposing ordinary, discarded items to create something absolutely extraordinary.