Finalists of National Technology Olympiad are impressed by Primorsky Aquarium

Finalists of National Technology Olympiad are impressed by Primorsky Aquarium

On March 4, participants in the final round of the National Technology Olympiad hosted by Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU) attended the Primorsky Aquarium. Over seventy most brilliant students from seventeen regions across the country gained an insight into the unique construction design for the facility and visited its exhibits to understand how virtual technologies and robotics would facilitate scientific research and educational attainment.

Seventy-six high schoolers were given a lecture about the Primorsky Aquarium and resources of the world's oceans.

“The lecture covered such topics as the physical structure of the Primorsky Aquarium and its role as a scientific and educational hub," said Inna Kaufman, Principal Specialist at the Environmental Education Division. “Since some of the children saw the sea for the first time in their lives here, in Vladivostok, I inserted information regarding the great significance of the world’s oceans to our planet into the lecture. The fact that the oceans are vital to the global economy was a revelation for many of the students. We discussed biodiversity and the vertical distribution of marine life. The majority of the presented information was related to ocean exploration using artificial intelligence and robotics.”

The Olympiad contestants were told not only about robotics application areas, in particular, uncrewed underwater vehicles but also about the expeditions, in which staff members of the A. V. Zhirmunsky National Scientific Center of Marine Biology had used these tools.

In addition, the students learned about the global challenges faced by ocean explorers, for instance, human inability to stay underwater for a long time, and the ways developed by international researchers for dealing with this and some other problems. The teens were impressed with underwater vehicle designs, allowing passengers to spend a night and have meals aboard, and stay submerged over long periods without surfacing. And all the children were greatly delighted when they heard of undersea farms of leafy greens and strawberries set up to create the technology that may be applied for future missions to Mars.

After the lecture, the young guests explored Aquarium exhibits.

It should be noted that the students came to Vladivostok to fight for a win in Virtual reality technologies and Autonomous underwater vehicles categories. Apart from competitive advantages in admission to national universities, each Olympiad winner will receive a 100-point certificate of the Unified State Exam completion in the subject of choice.

Immersion into the aquatic world generated plenty of creative ideas in the IT and robotics specialists to be. These included the use of modern technical equipment, telecommunication and IT technologies under the water, the monitoring of life support systems and marine environment, ROV (remotely operated vehicle) underwater tours, repairing and cleaning of life support systems, and the application of augmented reality and virtual reality technologies in exhibits and educational programs. There is a good chance that some of these talented youths will make their valuable contribution to the Aquarium development in the future.