Protocase is proud to be a major sponsor of the University Rover Challenge (also known as URC). Since 2015, we have provided all teams with a $2,000 manufacturing credit for custom parts, enclosures, and components, all built in our signature 2-3 day turnaround.

Throughout the years, we have certainly noticed key strategies for designing a strong rover, and are always keen to pass on that advice to students (such as in our yearly webinar and URC Design Tips guide).

Last year, we decided to take it one step further by bringing members of robotics industry to attend the competition as industry representatives. These reps could both talk to students about their experience in the working world, while also providing feedback and advice on their Mars rovers.

Advice from a URC Alumnus

One of the people we invited to attend last year was Cody Hyman, Senior Electrical Engineer with Honeybee Robotics, and a customer of Protocase. It was a perfect fit, since Cody himself participated in URC as a student at Oregon State back in 2010/2011. Attending URC as an industry representative, Cody provided feedback to student teams at the event on their design, processes, and project management, based on his experience as an engineer in the field and gave design advice for future robotics development.

We caught up with Cody to hear about his experience returning to URC 2017 and see if he had any advice for URC 2018 teams. When he said yes – we were all ears.

According to Cody, there are four key pieces of advice for successfully competing at URC:

  1. Start your rover early, finish early and give yourself plenty of time for testing.
  2. Keep yourself and your team organized.
  3. Always focus on the main objectives on hand.
  4. Keep communication up with your team and know what other parts of the system do.

Watch the entire interview below with Cody to find out about his work at Honeybee Robotics, and his full advice for teams competing in the 2018 University Rover Challenge.


To learn more about the University Rover Challenge, visit:

About The Author

Christa Carey

Christa Carey has been with Protocase since the very beginning. In fact, she was the first employee the company hired back in 2002, after working for Protocase co-founders previously. She graduated in 2000 from Cape Breton University in Nova Scotia, Canada. As the Engineering and Design Services Manager, Christa manages a team of 18+ engineers and technologists who work with Protocase customers daily to provide quotes, assess the manufacturability of their designs, suggest design changes where required and finalize files for approval.

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