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Research


2nd Place award at the world competition
 

     “Nanotechnology is a new scientific frontier that will impact many facets of society, such as medicine, computers, and the environment. Explore a current or potential application of nanotechnology, either from the Nano Quest robot missions or from another source. Learn what scientists are facing in improving upon the existing application or making the potential application a reality. Design an improvement for the existing nanotechnology, or choose a potential application that faces a challenge and solve it. Share your findings with your community.”
     There are 3 parts of a presentation project that allow it to qualify such as selecting a current or potential application of nanotechnology, designing a solution or improvement, and share the project with others; also should be no longer than 5 minutes. Teams may share their project in any form they desire and may be rewarded for creativity.

-Robot Masters Research Project-

     

As part of the FLL Robotics Competition, the Robot Masters also had to create a research project like every other team. The Robot Masters focused their thoughts on how Nanotechnology could improve techniques in Modern Medicine. After brainstorming, the team had decided on a technique to cure cancer. This process would include nano particles that would be able to “find” its way to the cancer with special marker proteins that look for specific receptors that are only on the cancer. These nano particles would be composed of an iron dioxide material, chosen for its low price, low toxicity level, and ability to heat up at a rapid rate. Once the nano particles are attached the affected area a low power microwave laser would heat up the metals that are attached to the cancer to 108oF. The metal would heat up faster than the surrounding tissues and burn the cancer without harming the body. Afterwards the leftover metals would be extracted by a dialysis machine coated with magnets; any metals remaining in the body would either be absorbed or harmlessly exit the body through natural functions.

Article

     Local Robotics Team Finds a Creative Way to Cure Cancer The local Lego Robotics team, based out of Oak Ridge High School in El Dorado Hills, has engineered a creative new way to solve terminal and regular cancer. The team consists of seven members: Brian, Daniel, Shefali, Kristyn, Kevin, Michael, and Katie.
     The members take part in First Lego League Robotics (FLL) competitions by building, programming and running a robot to complete different tasks based on the theme for the year. This year’s theme is nanotechnology and, along with their robot, teams must also research and present a solution to a problem.
     This year’s prompt is, from the official FFL site, “Explore a current or potential application of nanotechnology, either from the Nano Quest robot missions or from another source. Learn what scientists are facing in improving upon the existing application or making the potential application a reality. Design an improvement for the existing nanotechnology, or choose a potential application that faces a challenge and solve it. Share your findings with your community.”
     To complete this task, the Robotics team, the Robot Masters, has come up with a creative way to cure cancer using revolutionizing nanotechnology. Their project consists of using nano scale packages to latch onto cancer cells. The “packages” would have specific enzymes on them that would give them the capability to attach to the cancer cell. This is possible because the cancer cells have different receptor proteins on their surface that that enzyme-incrusted packages can find and attach to. The other cells in the body do not have these specific receptors.
     The packages would have iron-dioxide particles in them and, once attached to the cancer, microwave beams would heat up the metal, effectively cooking the cancer. The microwaves would not harm any other cells in the body because the energy absorbed by the metals is many times greater then the other cell in the body. Therefore, the cancer cells would die quicker then the other cells.
     Once the cancer is dead, the body would be able to recycle the cancer, and the enzyme coating around the iron would have disintegrated during the microwave treatment allowing the metal to be absorbed back into the bloodstream or be removed by magnets and/or a dialysis machine.
     The team came up with this idea by noticing that metal heats up when exposed to microwaves and by doing research on the effective use of delivering medicine by nano-particles and the use of lasers in the treatment of Port wine stain, a disease that causes the enlargement of blood vessels in the face.

Other Years

2007 Power Puzzle:  Team came up with ways of combining evaporative cooling with traditional air conditioning for dry regions.  The team went on the build and market the product.  They sold 7 units, installed 2 before the season ran out.

2005 Ocean Odyssey: Team came up with ways to avoid ghostnets using RFID technology.