Mission Possible

Q:  In reference to unguided balloons, may a string be used to empty the contents of a balloon into a bottle so long as the string does not guide or pull the balloon towards a specific direction? (Section: 4 / Paragraph: b / Sub-Paragraph: i / Line: 1)

A: This may be possible. It depends upon the decision of the judges who see it operate. It must not be guided and no other rules may be broken. As an example, the string's movement must not directly cause the balloon to move towards the direction it needs to go to cause the next action.

Q: What do you mean by launch? Does it have to go airborne above the top boundary? (Section: 4 / Paragraph: b / Sub-Paragraph: x / Line: 1)

A: Yes, the quarter must be launched into the air so that it goes above the top boundary of the Device before it lands back into the Device.

Q: Do competitors need to ask permission before touching their device if they believe it has stopped, jammed, or failed? (Section: 4 / Paragraph: h / Line: 1)

A: No, they do not need to ask. However, if the team reaches into a device that is still running, the judges may penalize the team for taking advantage of time. If they are figuring the time and basing the touch on that, it could lead to a disqualification.

Q: Does the inclined plane have to be a flat surface or can it be a curved surface/half-pipe (such as a PVC tube) or a set of parallel rails? (Section: 4 / Paragraph: b / Sub-Paragraph: vi / Line: 1)

A: It should be a plane. The plane could be curved, however, it is up to the student to prove that the IMA >= 2. Rails do not make an inclined plane.

Q: If during operation, part of a device exceeds its initial dimensions, should the measured dimensions be expanded (and therefore subject to 6.b.i. if >60.0cm) to include this extension, or be penalized under 6.c. for exceeding its initial dimension? (Section: 6 / Paragraph: c / Line: 1)

A: If a part of the device moves out of the original dimensions, it should be included in the measurement of the device. If an object leaves the device or detaches from the device, the 50 point penalty will be assessed. It is suggested that the team notify the judges about this expansion before running the device so this can be measured.

Q: Is ice considered water? For example, could water be mixed with ice? (Section: 4 / Paragraph: b / Sub-Paragraph: iv / Line: 1)

A: Water in action 4.b.iv must be in the liquid phase. The container can initially contain ice, but only liquid water can be added to the container during device operation.