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Summer School Report #4: Let’s go see technology in action! Field trips to the Central Main Line Two and Yaskawa Innovation Center

Our fourth report covers two of our social studies field trips. Taking the theme “let’s go out and see technology in action,” we visited some amazing places you normally dont't?get the chance to see. Since it was summer vacation, we even got to spend entire days on our field trips!

 

Today, I’d like to share some places we visited and the things we learned.

On July 26th, we visited the Central Main Line Two (an underground tunnel) to learn about civil engineering and sewer drainage work.

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Upon arriving at the site, we first heard from Fukuoka City Office workers and water systems engineers about how the Central Main Line Two helps prevent flooding. They explained that the English term “civil engineering” means, “working to create the city and environment for people.” Of course, being kids, our group had lots of questions!

Once question time finally died down, we each borrowed a helmet, gloves, and headed down to the main site.

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“With the Central Main Line Two, we’re safe from flooding even if it rains this much!”

Here the kids are learning about where rainwater goes by watching water flow onto a model of the city.
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Everyone gazing down the shaft that connects to the tunnel.?It’s a lot deeper than we expected... You can hardly see the bottom...

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Time to head underground aboard the construction elevator!

At an impressive 30 meters deep, it felt like entering into a secret base.

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We walked our way through the tunnel, which is still being excavated. Even though it was a hot summer day outside, it was quite cool down in the tunnel.

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In total, we walked about 1 km round trip inside the tunnel.

A quick group photo to finish the day, and a big thank you to all of the workers for giving us such an amazing experience!

Next, we took a trip on August 2nd to the Yaskawa Innovation Center.

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Normally, the Yaskawa Innovation Center is only open to fifth graders and up, so having it made available to all ages this day made it a very special opportunity for us.

The kids were all excited to see the latest in robot tech right in front of their eyes.

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Biomedical arms robot

We were surprised at the precise arm movements of this robot that makes medicine all by itself.
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7-axis multiple joint robot

This is a robot arm that moves like a person’s arm. The smooth movement of the joints allows for even greater mobility than human arms.

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Taking notes on the robot’s parts and the number of joints. Great work!

Mechatronics-wall

This wall features projection mapping and cubes built into the surface that are controlled by 256 motors. The synchronized lights, sounds, and movements of the cubes were truly impressive. The kids’ reactions were also a lot of fun, so definitely check out our short video!

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Robotics experience

Can you find the animal silhouette faster than a robot??We managed to beat the machines this time!

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But this robot was a bit too?good at whack-a-mole...

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The six robots and turntables at this “Minicar builder” could put together a car every nine seconds.

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We were able to check out lots of industrial robots that you wouldn’t be able to see in everyday life. Many of the kids said they want to visit the Yaskawa Innovation Center again. All of us on the staff also learned a lot during this trip.

 

Many thanks to everyone involved in these great experiences!

 

Rainbow Plan Tenjin
http://www.city.fukuoka.lg.jp/doro-gesuido/c-kensetsu/hp/reinbowplan.html

 

Yaskawa Innovation Center
https://www.yaskawa.co.jp/robot-vil/en/miraikan/index.html

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Check out earlier Summer School reports here:
Report #1: Making Commercials (with the Sony Store Tenjin Branch)
Report #2: Building and Programming Robots!
Report #3: Programming 2D and 3D games in Unity