(March 22, 2021) --

Cottonwood High School's Ursa Apex team competes in the 2018 Northern Gulf Coast Regional MATE ROV Competition. (DISL) 

The underwater robots will fly again at the Northern Gulf Coast Regional MATE ROV Competition in late April. The Dauphin Island Sea Lab’s Discovery Hall Programs will host the event from April 23 through the 25. 
The theme for this year’s competition is “Excite, Educate, Empower: Students engineering solutions to global problems.” The ROV missions will revolve around plastic pollution in our oceans, climate change on coral reefs, and maintaining healthy waterways. 
This year’s competition will look a little different with a hybrid format of in-person and virtual events. This format will keep our participants, staff, and volunteers as safe as possible while also allowing the students to showcase their innovative ROVs. The only in-person events will take place on Saturday, April 24, and include, but are not limited, to safety inspections and pool ROV demonstrations. These demonstrations will be pre-scheduled for each team. 
The engineering presentations and poster displays are scheduled to be virtual. The presentations give the students the chance to share how they came up with their ROV design, any troubleshooting in the testing process, and any changes they had to make to their ROV. 
Team registration is open through April 2, 2021. The competition is open to middle and high school students in all three competition classes: Scout, Navigator, and Ranger.