At the Diocesan Boys’ School in Hong Kong, a group of school students embarked on an ambitious project that would eventually etch their names into the annals of the Guinness World Records. This team, comprising Aaron Ho Yat Fung, Isaac Zachary To, Justin Wang Tou Duong, and Ngo Hei Leung, set out to design and construct what would become the world’s smallest humanoid robot. Their creation, standing at a diminutive height of 141 mm (5.55 inches), not only shattered a previous record held by Zain Ahmad Qureshi of Pakistan but also pushed the boundaries of what’s possible in robotics at the educational level.
The journey to achieving this milestone was marked by innovation, precision, and a deep commitment to advancing STEAM education. The robot itself, a marvel of engineering, features acrylic panels and 3D-printed parts, all of which were produced in the school’s advanced robotics lab. What makes this robot stand out, aside from its size, is its ability to perform a wide range of movements. Thanks to meticulously designed servo motors and a 16-channel servo control board, the robot can mimic human actions, such as walking, dancing, and even playing soccer, showcasing its bipedal and articulated capabilities.
The process of bringing this robot to life involved a series of complex steps, beginning with computer-aided design (CAD) to blueprint the innovative concept. Following this, the team worked closely with a factory to develop custom servo motors essential for the robot’s movement. The assembly phase saw the students piecing together the robot’s components, starting with the legs and moving on to the arms, all while ensuring the electronic components like the battery and control board were adequately sized and placed.
Beyond the technical achievements, the project was imbued with a larger purpose. The team envisioned their robot as a tool for democratizing technology education. By making the robot compact, affordable, rechargeable, and programmable, it is perfectly suited for use in STEAM workshops, particularly aimed at reaching ethnic minorities and economically disadvantaged families. This initiative underscores a commitment to inclusivity and the belief that access to technology education should be universal.
The Diocesan Boys’ School team has also expressed intentions to open-source the design and programming code of the robot. This move aligns with their goal to further STEAM education by allowing others to learn from, modify, and improve upon their design.
Robotics in schools has become a significant avenue for engaging students with STEAM subjects, blending the intellectual challenge of engineering with the excitement of competition. Across the globe, robotics competitions draw thousands of students who dedicate countless hours to designing and building robots capable of performing complex tasks. These competitions not only foster technical skills but also promote teamwork, problem-solving, and creativity.
The record set by the Diocesan Boys’ School’s robotics team not only represents a technical achievement but also embodies the spirit of innovation and education. Their work demonstrates how students can contribute to the advancement of technology while also using their skills to make education more accessible and inclusive. As robotics and technology continue to evolve, initiatives like this play a crucial role in inspiring the next generation of engineers, inventors, and problem solvers.