SOCES Engineering Middle School and High School Teams Take First Place in Aerospace Competition!


SOCES MS and HS Engineering Teams celebrate their victory at the 40th Annual Aerospace Robert H. Herndon Science and Engineering Competition.


Engineering students SOCES in both middle and high school placed first in the experimental portion of Aerospace Corp.’s 40th Annual Robert H. Herndon Science Competition.

The contest, held May 26th in El Segundo on the Aerospace campus, drew schools from across Los Angeles County, with students competing in the essay and experimental categories.

Middle School Engineering Students at their research booth. From left to right: Ms. Yamagata, Sofie Arancibia, Kayla Kossoff, Zoe Ramirez, Vaidehi Zala and Gracie Arancibia.

The middle school team’s research was titled, “The Hanging Alarm Clock” They identified a problem in which their peers have difficulties in waking up in the morning. The team engineered a solution by building a hanging alarm clock with an ultrasonic sensor that triggers a motor that raises the clock away from the sleeper when they try and reach for it. This forces the sleeper to get up out of bed to try to turn it off.

The SOCES Middle School Engineering Team Receiving their 1st Place Award. From left to right: Oliver Ambrosia (Aerospace mentor), Ms. Yamagata, Sofie Arancibia, Kayla Kossoff, Gracie Arancibia, Zoe Ramirez , Vaidehi Zala.

Ava Basilio presenting the High School Engineering Project.

The high school team’s project was “The Future of Automation – Object Detection Algorithms”. They developed a computer program that utilizes a camera to recognize object shapes that can then be picked up by a robotic arm. They also wrote computer code in which the camera will recognize the skin tone of a worker and pause the automation process thereby making it safer for humans to work collaboratively with robotic systems.

SOCES High School Engineering team receiving their 1st place award. From left to right: Oliver Ambrosia (Aerospace mentor) Dave Hicks (teacher), Ariful Rigan, Smit Rajasunguru, Ava Baselio, Shannon Lamb and Ray Sakanoue.

The students worked many hours after school on these projects with the help of other mentors from industry.

SOCES students who are interested and willing to make a commitment to working on projects such as these should see Ms. Yamagata (Room 104) or Mr. Hicks (Room 106).