Robotics challenge aims to inspire next generation of engineering talent

Selex Galileo has launched its 10th annual UK schools robotics challenge 'Rampaging Chariots' to promote technology and engineering among young people. This year the competition forms part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills' See Inside Manufacturing initiative.

More than 30 schools will compete in the tournament, which sees children test their own lightweight robots in a series of challenges including robot football and assault courses. Selex Galileo's Mike Gilbert said: "Our high tech business relies on talented young engineers bringing their ideas and enthusiasm into the company year on year. By helping young people engage with the exciting possibilities of technology, we're hoping to spark their interest in science, maths and engineering and eventually go on to pursue a career in technology at a company like ours." Every year Selex Galileo sends out 100 kits to schools for teams of five children to create and customise their own robots. With entrants from the previous year helping to build on the designs, it is estimated that the competition engages more than 2000 young people annually. "See Inside Manufacturing is about changing perceptions of modern manufacturing and showing young people, teachers and careers advisers that the industry offers interesting and rewarding job opportunities," said Business Minister Mark Prisk. "I encourage people to come along and see for themselves what exciting opportunities exist." The finals are due to take place this month in Basildon, Edinburgh and Luton.