Carmel High School robotics team captures World Championship award


Carmel High School senior Robert Nies regards his robotic team’s performance in the World Championship as a reward for its hard work.

“Winning the Excellence in Engineering Award in the Galileo Division at the World Championship was an amazing reflection of the innovation and dedication of the team this year,” said Nies, the robot ops lead for the CHS TechHOUNDS. “After over 5,000 hours of work building and programming this year’s robot and four demanding competitions, it was inspiring to see our work recognized on the world stage.”

The TechHOUNDS also placed second in the Galileo Division of the FIRST World Championship April 17 to 20 in Houston. FIRST stands for For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology.

“The judges were impressed by our advanced software, particularly our use of cameras and other sensors during the autonomous portion of each match and driver assist features to make controlling the robot smoother,” Nies said. “From a mechanical standpoint, the judges recognized the work we did to modify our design between each competition to improve robustness and keep up with evolving strategies.”

The Excellence in Engineering award celebrates the team that demonstrates a professional approach to the design process.

“At Worlds, we won this award for similar reasons as our Indiana competitions, specifically for the innovative automation on the robot and software control,” said Larry Griggs, who serves as the coach. “The Excellence in Engineering award is overall regarded as a more prestigious version of the other technical awards.”

The team won the Innovation in Control Award and Dean’s List Finalist Award at the Indiana State Championship.

It was a satisfying season for the team, especially the seniors.

“The years of rebuilding the team after the pandemic culminated in our first competition win and trip to the World Championship since 2019,” Nies said. “It was a strong year in terms of rookie member engagement, with the momentum from our preseason intra-team competition carrying over into excellent design, prototyping and manufacturing work during the competition season.”

Griggs said the team is starting a fundraising drive for the 2024-25 school year.

“This program is not just about robotics. It’s about nurturing the skills and talents that our community values and needs,” Griggs said. “By supporting TechHOUNDS, companies aren’t just investing in a robotics team; they’re investing in the future workforce, helping to develop the skills and expertise that are essential for success in today’s rapidly evolving tech-driven world.”