Subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter and stay ahead with the latest news in independent education
Brentwood's Robot Wars team with Dara O'Brien

Brentwood School sets sights on Queen of Bots

The only UK all-girl student robotics team has been invited to compete in Chinese tv show, King of Bots

Posted by Charley Rogers | October 19, 2017 | Technology

An all-girl robotics team from Brentwood School in Essex is the only all-female and UK school team to be invited to compete in a brand new Chinese robot fighting television show King of Bots, which will be hosted by international martial arts celebrity, Jet Li.  

Thomas Walland, STEM Coordinator at Brentwood School, said: “In the UK, only 9% of engineers are female so to have an all-girl team representing the school at King of Bots is truly exciting. We hope that our school’s team will further inspire students around the world to get into robotics – especially girls. We suspect that the captain of our team travelling to China will be one of – if not the only – female captain.” 

The team of four girls (aged 15 - 18) is one team out of 100 that will be taking part in the television show battling with their robot called SUSPENSION against teams of professional robotic engineers and experts. Members of the team Brentwood School Roboteers, including the team captain (Upper Sixth Form student Sabrina Skilling), a robot designer (Upper Sixth Form student Rebecca Ashcroft), a chief engineer (Juliette Skilling, a Year 11 student) and a design engineer (Mary Hirst, Head of School and Upper Sixth Form student) will be travelling to China this week to take part in the filming and represent the larger team back at the school. 

Team Captain Sabrina working on the robot

Dubbed the “world cup” of robot fighting shows, King of Bots is the first televised programme of its kind in China and will be broadcast at the end of this year on the Chinese version of Netflix: Zhejiang Satellite Television Network.  

Sabrina Skilling, said: “Our dream is to win King of Bots so that we can show the world that we can be Queen of Bots! Across the world there is a shortage of women in the engineering industry and, by competing in King of Bots, we hope to encourage more girls take an interest in engineering. We want to show that anyone can build robots.”  

All of the team members travelling to China are members of the Robot Club at the school and have previously featured on the BBC’s Robot Wars with their robot, EXPULSION. Following a defeat in the previous series of the UK television show, a separate team from the school has been invited back to compete in the current series airing on Sunday 22nd October. The new and improved robot that will feature on the new series of Robot Wars has a pushing power (30 horsepower) that is 30 times stronger than anything the team has built before. 

Brentwood School's original Robot Wars team

Walland said: “I am so proud of our students – the team only built their first robot less than a year ago! Before this, they knew nothing about robotics and had to research the subject before they were able to start building a fighting robot. The students in both teams have shown enormous dedication to the Robot Club – spending as much time as they can at the weekend and during their holidays designing and building robots. Not only have they been invited back to feature on another series of Robot Wars but they have also received this invitation to go to China to compete on an international platform.

“The Robot Wars team has put in huge efforts to improve the overall structure of the robot EXPLUSION; they now have an active weapon that they didn’t have before, and it has a much wider base which means it has more leverage against opponents to force them into corners.”

Subscribe to our free fortnightly newsletter and stay ahead with the latest news in independent education

Related stories

Remembrance Day: UK independent schools remember

Karting champ gives 9-year-old experience of a lifetime

Independent school pupils shine on A-level results day 2017

Gender bias in STEM: an analysis

VR and robotics most popular choices in edtech for schools

Karters keep Regional Champions crown for third year running

General Election candidates visit Brentwood School

When Virtual supports Reality

Take the VEX IQ Challenge

Women in tech say some were discouraged in career choice

Market place - view all

Tech Data

As one of the world's largest wholesale distributors of technology,...

Panopto AT

Panopto is a software company that provides lecture recording, scr...

Saville

We are Saville Audio Visual - AV with a Difference
Saville is...

Taplanes

Located in the village of Nidd, Taplanes began life as a subsidiar...

Squad kit

doOur sportswear products have been developed in close cooperation...

Led hut

LED lights for home & business. SAVE money with energy efficie...