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Staples Senior Adds Up His Passions With Work For Robotics Team

Staples High senior Peter Sauer is the student of the month for the Westport Sunrise Rotary. He shows off Kratos, star of his robotics team.
Staples High senior Peter Sauer is the student of the month for the Westport Sunrise Rotary. He shows off Kratos, star of his robotics team. Photo Credit: Contributed

WESTPORT, Conn. —  Staples senior Peter Sauer was named the Student of the Month for creating, leading and giving back through i2robotics, a team he and classmate Alex Davis started as freshmen, the Westport Sunrise Rotary recently announced.

Sauer is a co-captain and builder, CAD designer, and head of fundraising and of outreach for i2robotics. And he leads the team's strategy development.

The team designed and built the robot, Kratos. With the robot, they “scrimmage” against other teams, all racing to complete an assigned task.

Kratos is compacted for travel to competitions, shrinking down to a cube a bit larger than 2 feet on each side.

In the competitions, an operator using a radio control first raises a clear plastic vertical tube and a collector tube up about 3 feet. He then maneuvers the robot so it can mechanically gather balls up off the floor and feed them into Kratos, where air pressure propels them up one of the tubes, bounces them off an overhanging arm and drops into the vertical collection tube.

Sauer is fundraiser-in-chief for i2robotics. For the team to meet its design, build and outreach/mentoring goals, it must raise $25,000 annually.

They have been successful in obtaining funds from friends and family as well as from a number of local people and businesses.

Sauer is also advocates for a STEM curriculum, pushing for more schooling in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math.

“The most effective way of solving income inequality is through education,” he told the Sunrise Rotary Club.

His team gives back by mentoring students at Bassick High School in Bridgeport. They designed and built a simulation of the Mars Rover for Bridgeport’s Discovery Museum. The team also raised over $2,000 and traveled to Haiti to help restore high school robotics programs that flourished before the 2012 earthquake.

Sauer hopes to enroll next fall in a combined mechanical engineering/entrepreneurship program at a competitive university. He is awaiting news on his acceptance.

His father, Terry, a technology executive, is the team’s coach.

Rotary International is committed to Service Above Self. If you’re interested in giving back to your community, getting your Fridays off to a jump start and hearing interesting speakers, email Ron Holtz at ronaldholtz@gmail.com or visit Westport Sunrise Rotary at Bertuccci’s, 833 Post Road East, at 7:30 a.m. every Friday.

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