Questions must be directed toward the rules. We cannot pre-judge your device by answering questions on whether it complies.
- Earth & Space Science
- 2014-12-01 21:38 In the specific stars/planets section is Fomalhaut talking about the star or the planet Fomalhaut B?
The rules refer to the entire Fomalhaut system (including both the star and planet).
- 2014-12-01 21:41 Are TW Hya and TW Hydrae the same thing? If so, which one should be used as an answer during competition?
Yes, they are the same object. Hence, it does not matter which response is given, as both are correct.
- 2015-02-13 19:28 When using formulas to obtain answers for questions, will the formula constants come from the formula sheet on the Science Olympiad website or will they come from elsewhere?
There is no official "formula sheet" for the Astronomy C event. I believe you are referring to the sheet on the Scioly.org website (http://scioly.org/wiki/images/c/c6/Formula_Sheet.pdf), which was made by competitors, not event supervisors. However, there are helpful formulae and examples on the Coaches Manual CD. When grading numerical answers, supervisors always should accept a range of answers, usually plus or minus 10% of the value on the key. This guideline is shown on the sample tests at http://soinc.org/sites/default/files/uploaded_files/Astronomy_ES_GUIDE_C15.pdf and http://soinc.org/sites/default/files/uploaded_files/AnnotatedRegionalAstronomyTest15.pdf. A nominal range can be explicitly due to competitors having slightly different physical constants or tabulated values depending on their resource.
- Dynamic Planet - Div C
- Fossils - Div C
- 2015-02-13 21:30 Teams are allowed "one 3-ring binder.....The materials must be punched and inserted into the rings." During the competition, can materials be removed from the rings and the binder for easier access?
No- The last sentence states 'The materials must be punched and inserted (emphasis) into the rings (sheet protectors are allowed).
- 2015-02-13 21:34 Can students be asked to identify a species that is on the official list using a fossil that only represents a portion of the body of the species?
Yes, students could be asked to identify incomplete specimens. Samples requiring identification should show specific features making identification reasonable. A bone fragment would usually not be enough to make a solid identification, but a tooth or claw might be.
- GeoLogic Mapping
- 2015-02-20 16:35 Does "compass" mean a directional compass or a mathematical compass?
"Compass" refers to the magnetic, directional compass.
- Inquiry & Nature of Science
- Experimental Design - Div C
- Bungee Drop
- 2014-10-21 21:08 The phrasing for the sentence beginning "An attachment mechanism... " has very confusing wording. What exactly is it saying about attachment mechanisms (could you reword it for us?)
Rule 2.b.line 3 The phrase should be a complete sentence starting with the wording "Supervisors will supply an attachment mechanism......."
- 2014-11-25 20:52 What is the definition of "drop height?"is it the bottom of the plastic bottle? The top? the top including all attached pieces by the event supervisors?The height of the anchoring system's top of ledge?
The drop height is measured from the bottom of the bottle.
- 2014-11-25 20:58 Would folding the cord in half or other fractions/multiples to adjust for drop heights considered a physical alteration?
Folding the cord would not be considered a physical alteration. However, when folded, the cord would need to meet the elasticity test. Rule 3.c states "The cord may consist of more than one material...and more than one strand as long as it meets the elasticity test." Rule 3.c also defines the elasticity test "...while being suspended vertically, the bottom meter of the cord must stretch to at least 1.25 meters when a single mass is attached to this section and return to within 5 cm of its original length after the mass is removed."
- 2014-11-25 20:59 Does the bottom one meter length include the key ring for the elasticity test? i.e. the one meter length measured from the bottom of the key ring.
The key ring is included in the meter for the elasticity test.
- 2015-02-13 19:51 The rules state that the bungee must terminate with "a closed metal ring approximately 1/2 to 1 inch in diameter." What constitutes approximately? Some key rings labeled as 1" are slightly over 1". Is that still acceptable?
Approximately would be 3/8" to 1 1/8".
- 2015-02-13 19:53 Does the 500-591 mL bottle have to be specific weight/height? Or can it be any bottle, even one that is tall and thin or short and fat?
The 500 - 591 ml. bottle may be any shape. The total mass of the bottle, attachments & drop mass placed inside the bottle should be within the stated 50 - 300 gram limits.
- 2015-02-13 19:54 Are dampening mechanisms such as parachutes permitted?
No, dampening mechanisms violate the spirit of the problem.
- 2015-02-13 19:56 The cord is referred to as an "elastic cord" several times, though in this section, it refers to an elasticity test involving only the bottom 1m of the cord. Can the rest of the cord actually be non-elastic, and therefore no...
Yes, it may include non-elastic sections. All cords will stretch. Some more than others. The rules define elasticity and as long as the cord meets the elasticity test and does not violate the spirit of the problem (allowing the drop mass to free fall) it is acceptable. Please note the last sentence in the definition of the elasticity test (3.c. ..."Self-limiting-brake" mechanisms such as a separate, parallel, non-elastic strand that "brakes" the fall of the mass with little to no rebound are not permitted.)
- 2015-03-01 20:35 It says I can bring measuring devices and on videos I've seen calculators. Can I use a laptop for the bungee drop?
General rule #1 allows electronic items, while general rule #2 prohibits electronic devices capable of external communications. Hence, many calculators are allowed, but laptops are prohibited.
- 2015-03-01 20:55 What type of calculators are allowed during the 5 minute preparation time for the event?
Any type of calculators are allowed as long as they are not capable of external communication per general rule #2.
- 2015-04-23 18:35 The rules state that the bottom meter of the bungee cord must pass elasticity. If both the top and bottom meter of a cord passed elasticity, could I drop weights using either end?
Competitors will determine which end of the cord they wish to have tested for elasticity and attaching to the weight. Please note that the same end must be used for both activities.
- Technical Problem Solving
- Write It Do It - Div C
- 2015-02-10 21:46 Are underlines allowed to put emphasis on a word or phrase?
No, underlining is not something that can be done on a PC standard 101 key keyboard by pressing a single key or a single key in combination with the shift key.
- 2015-05-08 12:07 Does use of a cartesian coordinate expression (x,y) or polar coordinate expression (distance from a point & angle reference) count as "code" if explained and defined properly according to normal mathematical context/use?
Use of cartesian coordinate expressions as you described would be acceptable.
- 2014-11-25 21:05 While writing can words be crossed off or erased if a mistake is made?
Yes, strikethroughs may be used to identify text that is not part of the completed instructions. Even though technically not acceptable since it cannot be made on a standard typewriter, students are not expected to perfectly write instructions and if mistakes are made, strikethroughs would identify that the text is NOT part of the written instructions ...therefore wouldn't be docked in scoring.
- Life, Personal & Social Science
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Cell Biology - Div C
- 2015-02-13 20:08 Would the cell cycle include both mitosis and meiosis?
The "Cell cycle and mitosis” bullet should not include meiosis. Meiosis is outside the scope of the event this year.
- Disease Detectives - Div C
- 2014-10-26 19:43 The Official Insect List has a glaring error. The family listed for "scale insects-twig or leaf" is wrong. It should be Coccidae, not Dactylopiidae which is cochineal insects.
From the rules... "The taxonomic scheme is based upon the Audubon Insect and Spider Field Guide. Any arbitrations questions will defer to this resource as the correct answer. " and on p 512 cochineal bugs are labeled as Family Dactylopiidae. its not a perfect system, and no book I am aware of will resolve every issue that can arise with the fluidity of insect taxonomy.
- 2015-02-13 21:24 Can annotations include pictures; as in, can I tape pictures to the inside of the field guide?
No. Pictures cannot be taped into the field guide but they can be included in the allowable notes. Written notes would be considered annotations in the field guide.
- 2015-02-13 21:26 Are students allowed to use tabs in their Audubon books this year? Last year they were not allowed. Thank you.
Yes, students are allowed to bring one commercially published resource that may be annotated and tabbed (limit 3 words on tab).
- 2015-03-18 12:17 Can students highlight notes in the book that they are bringing in for competition - just clearing the definition of annotated.
Yes, highlighting notes in the book is allowed.
- 2015-04-22 19:36 Are annotations in the book allowed to be drawings done directly in the book and not taped in?
Yes, annotations my be drawings in the book. Nothing may be taped in the book.
- Green Generation - Div C
- 2014-10-27 20:49 Does the limitation to Div C apply to both Legislation and Economic Opportunity or just Economic Opportunity?
Both topics of Legislation and Economic Opportunity in Solving Problems will apply to only Division C. Division B will not have any questions related to Legislation and Economic Opportunity in Solving Problems.
- 2014-11-25 21:42 3.a.i. lists "....... nutrient cycling, community interactions, population dynamics, species diversity and indicator species (2015 and 2016.)" Is population DYNAMICS in 2015 but NOT population GROWTH?
The basic ecological principle of how populations grow/dynamics will be covered in 2015 and 2016. (For eg- J curve, S curve, predator-prey interactions). Population growth human caused issues will be covered in 2016 ( For example- habitat loss, deforestation, desertification).
- Physical Science & Chemistry
- Air Trajectory
- 2014-10-25 21:32 Its stated that the launch area is "1.00 m x 1.50 m (parallel to the launch direction)," does this mean that launch area is 1.50 m in length along the launch access and 1 m wide?
Yes, the 1.5 m side of the launch area is the side that is parallel to the launch direction and the front of the launch area is 1 m wide.
- 2014-10-25 21:38 Please define "plastic practice golf balls". Are high density polyurethane foam practice golf balls allowed?
The most common type of plastic golf balls are plastic dimpled and plastic with holes and HDPE foam types are legal. As long as they are commercially marketed as "plastic practice golf balls", they may be used. It is recommended that students bring the packaging if there is a question.
- 2014-10-25 21:45 The height of the target is not specified in the rules. What are the limits on how high or how low the targets can be compared to the launching area?
Rule 4.d. explicitly says that the target is either tape on the floor or panels lying on the floor. There should not be any significant difference between the floor height in the launch area and the targets.
- 2014-10-25 21:59 Can a team take one shot each for both targets and then decide which target it takes a second shot and/or take a bucket shot (if allowed by 4.i)?
Competitors may choose either target for their first shot. They may then choose to take their second shot at the same target or their first shot at the other target. If they qualify to take a bucket shot after their first shot at a particular target, they must ask for the bucket when they wish to take the second shot at that target.
- 2014-10-25 22:05 How can the competitors make measurements after the launch without touching the target?
Competitors will be told the distance of the targets from the launch area and can measure their impact locations from the launch area if outside of the target.
- 2014-10-25 22:11 If the projectile bounces off the bottom of the bucket and then out of the bucket would the bonus count?
Rule 4.i states that "making contact with the inside bottom surface is worth an additional 100 points." It does not state that after making contact the projectile must remain in the bucket, so the bonus is given even if the projectile subsequently bounces out of the bucket.
- 2014-10-30 17:49 Is a Foose ball legal to use as a projectile?
No, only the listed items in rule 3.f. are allowed as projectiles.
- 2014-11-25 19:58 Does the gravitational potential energy need to convert directly into air pressure or can it go through multiple conversions to get to the air pressure force.
It can go through multiple conversions, but 100% of the energy must initially be gravitational potential energy.
- 2014-11-25 20:03 Does the air pressure/movement generated by by the falling mass have to be immediatley applied (either directly or indirectly) to the projectile or can it be stored and then released?
It can be stored and released, but 100% of the initial energy must come from the falling mass and event supervisors must be able to verify this. Also, all chambers must automatically return to ambient air pressure.
- 2014-11-25 20:12 During competition, can a team use a different air chamber for each launch?
Yes, as long as the device remains safe and within other specs.
- 2014-11-25 20:28 Polyurethane foam practice golf balls almost never use the word "plastic" in their advertising, although polyurethane is clearly a plastic. If the package says "PU foam practice golf balls" is it OK?
All the words "plastic", "practice", "golf", and "ball" must appear somewhere on the packaging or advertising description of the product, but not necessarily all in the same spot.
- 2015-01-05 22:09 The kids want to know if they are restricted to only these balls, or can they used other soft commercially-produced balls?
Teams must use only the type of balls listed with in rule 3.f.
- 2015-01-27 20:15 Does creating a vacuum from the energy provided by the mass obey the rule, as long as the air in the chamber is displaced, such that a moving piston powered by the energy from the mass creates a vacuum, and another piston follows due to the vacuum...
Yes, as long as the mechanism is safe (up to the determination of the local event supervisor.)
- 2015-01-27 20:20 Will these bucket distances be subject to the interval limitations stated in section 4e (e.g. 1.00 m increments for regionals)? Or could the bucket distance be at arbitrary distances (e.g. “4.6 m from the launch line and 1.35 m to the right.”)...
Bucket distances can be arbitrary intervals.
- 2015-01-27 20:24 Does creating a vacuum from the energy provided by the mass obey the rule, as long as the air in the chamber is displaced, such that a moving piston powered by the energy from the mass creates a vacuum, and another piston follows due to the vacuum...
Yes, as long as the mechanism is safe (up to the determination of the local event supervisor.)
- 2015-02-11 20:07 Can teams impound multiple masses and use different masses for each launch given the masses are less than the maximum mass allowed?
Per 3.a. more than one mass may be impounded, but the total sum of all masses must be less than 3.5kg (Div C), 5.0kg (Div B)
- 2015-02-11 20:12 Can multiple triggers be used (ie one to release the falling mass and then one to release stored pressure)?
Yes, if the system is designed in such a way that were the second trigger not activated, other relevant rules are still met, such as rule 3.c regarding automatically returning to ambient air pressure and 4.c automatically returning to the launch area.
- 2015-02-11 20:15 Is a laser permitted for use as solely as an aiming device?
Yes, as long as it is a removable tool that is not part of the device and removed prior to launch. The official SO laser policy must also be followed: http://soinc.org/lasers
- 2015-03-15 14:08 Does the gravitational potential energy need to convert directly into air pressure or can it go through multiple conversions to get to the air pressure force.
It can go through multiple conversions, but 100% of the energy must initially be gravitational potential energy.
- 2015-03-17 10:49 Can I use a level app on my phone do determine the pitch of the barrel if it is removed after use? It will also only be used for aiming.
No. General Rule #2 prohibits devices such as cell phone during the competition.
- 2015-03-24 08:20 if the bottle is crushed after the launch, is the team can touch the bottle to make it reform to normal?
- Compound Machines
- 2014-10-27 20:39 For the first class lever component, does the total length of the bar have to be less than 40 cm or the individual sides from the fulcrum?
For the class 1 lever the load point to effort point measurements must be less than or equal to 40.0 cm. The size of the the fulcrum is irrelevant to this measurement.
- 2014-11-25 21:14 For class II lever would 40 cm be measured from the center of the fulcrum to the center of the load?
The 40 cm maximum length will be from the fulcrum connection to the effort point.
- 2015-02-13 20:13 How many significant figures or decimal spots should the ratios be rounded to?
Mass ratio answers should be entered to the number of significant digits allowed by the Event Supervisor.
- 2015-02-13 20:26 Does the ratio have to be simplified to a decimal value or are you allowed to leave it as a fractional value?
The ratio should be presented as a decimal value, unless otherwise authorized by the Event Supervisor.
- 2015-05-07 10:55 Must each mass fit inside the 15 x 15 x 20 cm box independently, or do all three masses have to fit within this box simultaneously? Will the dimensions of the masses for nationals be announced prior to the tournament?
Each mass must fit within the box individually. The dimensions are not required to be announced prior to the competition.
- It's About Time
- 2014-10-26 19:52 If we build a clock from parts made from a 3D printer, is that legal? The clock will be powered by an non-electric oscillator.
Per General Rule 1, yes it is allowed. As long as it complies to all other event rules, general rules, and the official Science Olympiad Building and Tools policy found at http://soinc.org/building_tools_policy. A 3D printer is no different from any other workshop tool such as a table saw or drill press.
- 2015-02-15 15:31 Would a buret (as used in titrations) be considered a "commercial counter?" Or would using a buret violate the rules for It's About Time in any way?
No, a buret is not a commercial counter and is legal for competition.
- 2014-10-27 20:11 May students bring one or two individual resource pages (not in a binder), as in past years? Are students allowed to remove resource pages from the binder to use while working during the competition?
Most event supervisors are going to go by the book, which means the two pages would need to be in a binder. There are no rules on the removal of the pages, but it might be best to ask the event supervisor if removal of the pages would be allowed.
- Protein Modeling
- 2015-03-25 08:44 Is there limit or penalty on # of add ons?
No, there are no limits. However, a limited number of points are allocated to the additions and only "functionally relevant features" will earn points. All additions must be explained on a 3"x5" note card. Penalties might be assessed if the rules are not followed.
- 2015-03-25 08:47 Does the notecard need to be attached in any specific manner or can it just be given with the pre-build model?
The note card should be attached to the pre-build so that it does not separate from the model. Everything should be labeled with the team identification information.
- Chem Lab
- 2015-02-13 20:10 Will this event incorporate topics from organic and inorganic chemistry?
Stoichiometry could easily incorporate simple organic reactions such as burning, or weak acid/buffer solutions. Kinematics could again involve simple organic molecules in the kinetic reactions being studied.
- Technology & Engineering
- Bridge Building - Div C
- 2014-10-27 19:44 Must the outside width of the Bridge be at least 5.0 cm for the entire span? What does "at any height along its span" mean?
Yes, the outside width of the Bridge must be at least 5.0 cm for the entire span (Div. B - 35 cm and Div. C - 45 cm). "At any height along its span" means that the 5.0 cm width for the entire span can be at any height on the bridge as long as it is not below the top surface of the Test Supports.
- 2014-10-27 19:49 If the outside width of the bridge at the bottom chord is 5cm out to out, can the top chords be less than 5cm out to out in order to better support the loading block?
Yes, as long as the width of the Bridge is at least 5.0 cm for the entire span it doesn't matter at what height the 5.0 cm minimum width is located.
- 2014-10-27 19:52 May the loading block be placed at any height of the Bridge as long as it is in the center of the span?
Yes, the loading block may be placed at any height of the Bridge as long as it is in the center of the span and not below the top surface of the Test Supports prior to testing.
- 2014-11-25 20:31 Can the bridge be say 1cm wide with a thin outrigger along it's length to meet the 5 cm wide requirement?
Yes, that is one way to meet the requirements of rule 3.e.
- 2015-02-13 19:46 It states, "Two identical test supports at least 3cm x 3cm x 15 cm. Can you clarify which dimensions are the height, width, and length?
The Test Supports are at least 3.0 cm high, 3.0 cm wide and 15.0 cm long
- 2015-02-13 19:48 Are the Test Supports screwed into the Test Base so that it does not move, or can the students move the Test Supports, as is stated in section e, "Test Supports that are set by the students."
No, the Test Supports are not attached to the Test Base. Students may move them anywhere within the Bearing Zones on the Test Base.
- Mission Possible
- 2014-10-22 08:57 Does each golf ball need to end up in its own container?
- 2014-10-22 09:02 What is the difference between the Action Sequence List transfers and the Bonus Energy Transfer Sequences? When is which used, etc?
All actions/transfers must be included on the submitted Action Sequence List. The Bonus Energy Transfer Sequences must be included in the submitted Action Sequence List.
- 2014-10-22 09:07 Can objects, other than scoring golf balls, be placed inside of the scoring jugs, provided that they do not alter the inside surface of the jug?
No, objects other than the
scoringgolf balls may not be inside the scoring jugs. The inside of the scoring jug may not contain any objects, excluding scoringgolf balls, throughout the duration of the run. Only allowed golf balls may be in the jug whether they receive 2 points or do not receive 2 points.
- 2014-10-22 09:11 For two consecutive ETS will the golf ball at the end of first ETS be the same as the golf ball of the second ETS?
Yes, the ending ball from one ETS may be the starting ball for the next ETS. There does not need to be an intermediate step between two consecutive Bonus Energy Transfer Sequences. Keep in mind that there must be a golf ball triggering each ETS.
- 2014-10-22 09:13 Does an ETS have to be initiated by a golf ball specifically falling into a scoring jug (4.b, line 2) or simply initiated by a golf ball "Prior to entering a scoring jug (4.a, line 8)"?
The Bonus ETS must be initiated by the process of a golf ball moving into a scoring jug.
- 2014-10-22 09:24 What is the specific definition of "immediately," as in "The last ball will count for points if it immediately drops into a jug"?
Immediate is not specifically defined in a tenth of a second or seconds so as not to put a burden on the Event Supervisor for timing. It is up to the Event Supervisor to determine the definition of "immediate". A team should not take chances of the ball taking more than 1-2 seconds.
- 2014-10-22 09:30 Only 6 Energy Task Sequences score points. Can any number of golf balls be given 2 points, though after the first 6, they use non-scoreable Actions?
Yes, any number of golf balls may receive 2 points with non-scoreable actions.
- 2014-10-26 20:30 What constitutes an action/how are they different from a transfer?
A transfer is referring to an ETS (Energy Transfer Sequence), which is described in 4.b.
- 2014-10-26 20:42 If more than one golf ball is being sorted, do you just drop one in to start the device and the others are already placed in the device, or must all of them be dropped in?
The Start Task golf ball is the only one that is not in the device at the Start. All other golf balls must begin in the device.
at a point below the bottom of the lowest scoring plastic beverage jug.
- 2014-10-26 20:52 It states that the ETS must be initiated by the PROCESS of a golf ball moving into a scoring jug, does this mean that as long as the starting golf ball starts the next ETS and falls in before the next golfball falls in, the ETS is scored?
- 2014-10-26 20:58 Do the initiating and final golf balls have to be eligible for scoring in order for an ETS to be eligible for scoring? Initiating and final referring to the golf ball starting the ETS and the golf ball released at the end of the transfer.
Yes, both the initiating and final golf balls must be eligible for scoring in order for an ETS to be eligible for scoring.
No. Neither the initiating nor the final golf balls need to be scoreable balls in order for an ETS to be eligible for scoring.
- 2014-11-03 19:51 Does the starting golf ball have to end up in a scoring jug?
No, the starting golf ball does not have to end up in a scoring jug.
- 2014-11-03 19:54 Are parallel steps allowed this year?
No. By definition the actions and ETS are listed in the Action Sequence List in order, with one triggering the next. See rule 4.d.
- 2014-11-03 20:03 Would an ETS of “X to Y to X” be different and unique when compared to a sequence of “X to Y to X to Y to X”? What is the working definition of a unique ETS?
Yes, these would be different unique energy transfer sequences. A unique Energy Transfer Sequence is when the sequence of transfers are different from those of another sequence. This could include the addition or deletion of a transfer from another type of sequence already used.
- 2014-11-03 20:14 Does the ENTIRE golf ball need to be completely below the jug, or does only part of the golf ball need to be below the jug?
Yes, all golf balls must start completely below any of the scoring jugs except for the first golf ball.
Yes, the ENTIRE scoring golf ball must at some point be completely below the lowest scoring jug before being lifted and dropped into a scoring jug.
- 2014-11-03 20:57 Does the golf ball that starts the first action have to fall below the lowest container, then be lifted up and be dropped into a jug for the 2 points, or can it start the action and fall right into a jug?
The starting golf ball may start an action and fall into a scoring jug without going below the lowest container but it will not receive 2 points. To score 2 points, the starting golf ball must go completely below the lowest container and be lifted up by the device before dropping into a scoring jug.
- 2014-11-03 21:00 Under the rules for mission possible it states, "hazardous liquids...and unsafe chemical handling will not be permitted. What designates a liquid as hazardous or a chemical as unsafe?
That is up to the individual event supervisor to determine. It will be based upon common standards and processes, such as those found in a typical chemistry lab. In general, when in doubt, err on the side of caution.
- 2014-11-03 21:05 Can the first starting golf ball initiate an ETS?
Yes, the starting golf ball may initiate an ETS. Please see the posted FAQ regarding scoring 2 points for the starting golf ball.
- 2014-11-05 14:23 What is the difference between the Action Sequences and the Bonus Energy Transfers?
Everything that happens in the device is an Action. Actions on their own don’t earn points. Transfers are when one form of energy is transferred into another form of energy. Transfers on their own don’t earn points. The only way a Transfer can receive points is if it is part of an Energy Transfer Sequence (ETS) as per the rules. Regardless of the points intended to earn, all Actions and Energy Transfers must be documented in the Action Sequence List (ASL).
- 2014-11-13 21:45 Can microcontrollers, which are not computers nor integrated circuits, be used in the device?
No, microcontrollers contain integrated circuits and thus are prohibited.
- 2014-11-30 22:45 "A single Action or component must contribute to only one scoreable Transfer." Can the same component be re-used to lift multiple golf balls, or does each golf ball need to be lifted by an individual component?
Yes, the same component may be re-used to lift or move multiple golf balls unless the component is part of a Bonus Energy Transfer Sequence which would then be a "scoreable Transfer".
- 2014-12-01 20:54 What is your definition of jug?
We will be using the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of a jug: "A large, deep container with a narrow opening and a handle."Per the posted Official Clarification on 3/3/5: A jug is defined as any plastic beverage container that has sides that are at least 10cm high. There is no requirement that the jug/container has or had a handle on it.
Per the rules, the jug must be made of plastic and also have been used for a beverage. Specific size of the jug is not defined.
- 2014-12-01 21:02 What defines a "buzzer"?
It is an audio signaling device producing a buzzing sound by vibration.
- 2015-02-16 13:52 May the handle of a legal jug (plastic, used for beverage, has handle, >10cm tall) have the top cut off to enlarge the opening, such that the entire handle is removed, but such that it is more than 10cm tall?
Yes, the handle may be cut off the jug along with any portion of the jug more than 10cm above the bottom of the jug. The rules do not require the handle be intact above 10cm from the bottom of the jug.
- 2015-02-16 14:11 Does the jug have to have a handle or can it be a bottle that has been cut?
No, a jug does not have to have a handle. Please see the posted Clarification.
The scoring container must be a plastic beverage jug per the rules and which had a handle per the definition of a jug posted as an FAQ on 12/1/14. The handle may be cut off at a point above 10 cm from the bottom of the jug. A bottle is not a jug and would not be legal to use as a scoring jug.
- 2015-02-16 14:30 Are plastic beverage containers with molded indentations to grasp the bottle considered jugs?
No. A plastic beverage container with molded indentations instead of a handle is not considered a jug.
Yes, this would be allowed.
- 2015-02-28 14:15 What is your definition of a fuse?
The type of fuse that is not allowed due to safety concerns is a chemically treated string that burns at a controlled rate (typically used in fireworks and explosives.) Teams are permitted to use electric fuses to limit current in a circuit.
- 2015-02-28 14:35 Can the same battery be used in two different circuits (each circuit included in a different scorable ETS) without violating the rule of using a single complonent in only one scoreable transfer, or must different batteries be used in each circuit?
You may use the same battery in multiple transfers, provided it is energizing different components.
- 2015-02-28 15:05 Does the starting golf ball (the one that is dropped into the device) have to end up in a scoring jug if the team is NOT trying to get the two points for the golf ball?
- 2015-03-01 16:51 Parallel steps are not allowed. How is scoring affected when a device has a parallel step?
It is a competition violation since rule 4.a. says each golf ball must cause the next action.
- 2015-03-01 16:55 What type of reaction is a rocket igniter? Would this be a E to C to T reaction?
No, rule 4. explicitly says a single component can contribute to only 1 transfer. Depending on how it's used, a rocket igniter could be listed as either E to C or E to T.
- 2015-03-10 20:30 The device task explicitly says that the device has to "lift one or more golf balls into scoring jugs." What is the penalty for not lifting any golf balls in the device?
You would receive no points for golf balls. You are still eligible to receive points for time, ETS completion, etc.
- 2015-03-10 21:42 The rules state "A single Action or component must contribute to only one scoreable Transfer." May an Action occur multiple times in different energy transfer sequences so long that it uses a different component each time, and still receive points?
Yes. The same type or similar actions may be repeated for scoring Energy Transfer Sequences, but the physical item can only be used once for scoring an Energy Transfer Sequence. Keep in mind that each scoreable ETS must be unique in the sequence of the transfers.
- 2015-03-10 21:51 What is your definition of a component?
A component is a physical part of the Mission Possible device. A commercial piece (component) with various transfers within this commercial piece (component) can not be claimed as individual transfers for an Energy Transfer Sequence.
- 2015-03-10 22:01 Can the golf balls be lifted above the jug all at once as part of the Start Task, and then triggered to drop into the jug one at a time, or does each one have to be lifted individually?
The golf balls can be lifted above the jug all at once as part of the Start Task, and then triggered to drop into the jug one at a time.
- 2015-03-10 22:13 When the golf balls are moved to the container, do they have to be fully inside of the container, or can they be sitting above the top of the container with the other golf balls under them?
They must be at least partially inside the container.
- 2015-03-10 22:25 The rules state, concerning scoring containers, "the sides must be at least 10 cm higher than the bottom of the scoring jug." Does this account for altering the orientation of the jug? Or must the sides simply be 10 cm tall when standing upright?
The height of the wall from the lowest point of the scoring jug in the orientation in the Mission Possible must be 10 cm or higher.
- 2015-03-11 11:15 Can the scoring jug with 10cm high sides be in any orientation or must it be vertical?
It can be in any orientation as long as the lowest point of the opening is always at least 10 cm above the lowest point of the jug.
- 2015-03-11 11:18 In regards to golf balls that are placed inside the device prior to the start task, can they placed above the bottom of the lowest scoring jug?
Yes, but they must be below the bottom of the lowest scoring jug at some point during device operation in order to count for points.
- 2015-03-11 12:04 4.b says "An ETS can receive points only if....the ETS is successful in its entirety as listed in the ASL....". If a "touch" is required for an ETS to perform, can it still be considered "successful". Meaning can you receive the 50 points if you m...
No, teams only receive points for actions completed by the device. Anything the competitors complete themselves through a "touch" does not receive points.
- 2015-03-13 12:45 "...a golf ball moving into a scoring jug (cannot be counted as an Energy Form)." If say the golf ball hits a mechanical lever while moving into a scoring jug, does this count as an Energy Form (Specifically mechanical)?
The golf ball hitting the lever would not be considered a transfer, but the lever could count as a mechanical energy form in the next action/transfer.
- 2015-03-13 12:45 Would a golf ball hitting a switch be counted as mechanical energy (both the golfball and the switch move) for a mechanical to electrical transfer?
- 2015-03-13 12:47 4b states an ETS must be initiated by the PROCESS of a golf ball moving into a scoring jug. Does the golf ball itself have to initiate the ETS? For example, a golf ball lifted by a lever could activate a switch, or the lever lifting the golf ball ...
The lever moving the golf ball activating a switch would be an acceptable initiation of the ETS.
- 2015-03-13 12:49 Does a small, factory made device count for an ETS (assuming all the transfers involved are visible)? For example, does a small relay that is turned on a quickly trigger a switch to close a circuit count as E-M-E when the transfers are almost imme...
No. Rule 4 explicitly states a single component can only count for 1 transfer.
- 2015-03-13 12:51 FAQ 2014 11-03 19:03 says a transfer of X-Y-X is unique compared to X-Y-X-Y-X. The Sample ASL says that one repetition of M-E-M is okay, but more than one repetition is not. Is FAQ 2014 11-03 19:03 in need of revision to state a limitation on repe...
That is not what the ASL states. It is simply saying that if you have X:Y:Z once, you can't have another purely X:Y:Z ETS. Repetitions are okay as long as they are inside unique ETS; the addition of -X to X-Y-X to make X-Y-X-X makes another unique ETS. Another X-Y-X by itself is not okay, because it is not a unique ETS.
- 2015-03-13 12:52 A previous answer stated that a sequence of "X to Y to X" and "X to Y to X to Y" are unique ETS, does it matter if the transfer is the same? To clarify: does mechanical energy NOT have to transfer to a different energy form each time?
No, the transfer may be the same type.
- 2015-03-13 13:08 Does the golf ball that triggers the buzzer need to be scoreable? If not, does it need to start below the jug?
No, the golf ball that triggers the buzzer does not need to be scoreable. To earn the bonus 2 points, the golf ball must at some point be completely under the jug before being lifted up.
- 2015-03-13 19:49 Can you turn on a motor and leave it on throughout the mission and have it lift golf balls? (A M-M transfer) And will it be allowed to lift golf balls part of ETSs, as long as they are still triggered in the appropriate manner?
This question has two parts. You may use a single, common motor to lift multiple golf balls but the golf balls must enter the jug individually. The motor must not be used in multiple ETS's.
- 2015-03-13 19:50 Can more than one golf ball be moved at the same time if the movement is caused by only one action?
Yes, but they must enter the jug one by one and trigger ETS's individually.
- 2015-03-17 10:46 Must you use a different lifting motor for each ball that counts for an ETS?
A Team may share a single motor in their device to lift multiple golf balls, but a single motor must not contribute to the internal transfers on more than one ETS.
- 2014-12-16 14:51 When the 2kg weight of the scrambler gets dropped during the activation of the launcher and falls to the floor, is it allowed to stretch a spring, which would later propel the car?
Yes, you can use springs as described but they MUST be completely in a relaxed position (NO potential energy!) prior to the dropping of the mass and that all of it's PE is only due to the mass dropping.
- 2014-12-16 14:52 Are we allowed to use rubber bands in our Scrambler?
Yes, you can use rubber bands but they MUST be completely in a relaxed position (NO potential energy!) prior to the dropping of the mass.
- 2015-02-15 16:39 The backstop is described as "flat (no holes)". My understanding is that holes may be drilled for the purpose of inserting or screwing the horizontal dowels and vertical dowel, but no other holes must exist. Am I correct, i.e., may holes be drille...
Yes, you can drill holes for the dowels, but there should be no "unfilled" holes in the backstop when you are done.
- 2014-10-27 20:15 Would a ramp be allowed?
No. 2.c. states "The vehicle must not contribute to the falling mass." 2.h. states "The only parts of the Scrambler that are allowed to contact the floor are those that are already in contact with the floor in the ready-to-run position. All ETV wheels must be in contact with the floor at all times."
- Wright Stuff
- 2014-10-26 21:05 Please clarify "non-transparent" as even Esaki tissue is transparent enough to read through: Is Dying, spray painting, or coloring with a marker over clear plastic covering material allowed?
Yes, for the Science Olympiad National Competition, the techniques and materials as described but not limited to: dying, spray painting, coloring with a marker over clear plastic, are each acceptable and will be allowed as a covering so that aircraft may be identified at its maximum altitude.
- 2014-10-26 20:48 In the case of a tip-dihedral model, would a colored wing tip (which is non-horizontal) meet the requirements of both rule 5.a and 3.g.?
(section: 2 / paragraph: b / line: 6)
(section: 2b / paragraph: 1 / line: 10, 20)
(section: Compet / paragraph: 1 / sub-paragraph: b / line: 1)
(section: 2 / paragraph: C / line: 1)
(section: 2 / paragraph: c / line: 1)
(section: 2 / paragraph: e / line: 2)
(section: 2 / paragraph: h / line: 2)
(section: 3 / paragraph: g / line: 1)
(section: 5 / paragraph: a / line: 1)